I said in mine heart, Go to now, I will prove thee with mirth, therefore enjoy pleasure: and, behold, this also is vanity. (Ecclesiastes 2:1 KJV).
Everyone wants to be happy. Even if we can’t get it on a continuous basis, we seek to create the opportunities for ourselves to experience some happiness if just for a short time once so often. We will even go as far as paying a high price for it. Subjecting our health, our reputation and our resources just for 30 minutes of pleasure.
The daily routine of life can be so wearisome that for some the only way to keep going is to have a regular injection of some happiness into that routine.
Happiness has therefore been packaged and advertised and sold to us on a daily basis in the form of food, sex, money, laughter. We pay for these so that in the time we are enjoying them we can forget our problems, responsibilities and disappointments. We even attempt to use them to forget the disillusionment of life itself. We over use / misuse these gifts of life and we become slaves to them and totally hooked and dependent on them.
We become addicted to them and will sell our very souls, our reputations and even our dignity just for another taste.
So you hate your job. That’s not surprising, so do most people you know. However, since it earns a decent income and you need the Money, you endure it and look forward to the one week holiday away that the money can help you afford. That will inject some happiness into the whole situation as it will be filled with food, sex, laughter, drinks etc.
So you are driven to achieve, you have no balance in your life. There are no breaks for you and you have developed a reputation that does not allow you to let down your guard and relax. The only relief from it is when you indulge in illicit behaviour which you know if discovered will ruin your reputation. You get your kicks from courting with danger. That describes the situation of the high flying politician, preacher, Jet setter etc. We get surprised to hear that they have been caught with a prostitute, or are hiding an immoral behaviour. This is all related to the quest for happiness which puts their lives so out of balance.
You hear of the beauty queen or royalty or famous person who is addicted to food, drugs, drink etc. They suffer with Bulimia, anorexia and other illnesses due to an addiction with a behaviour pattern aimed at getting some happiness.
For the average person, there is an addiction to information, to seeking knowledge about what we think will make us happy or give us that success or edge that we can see in the people we idolise whether on TV or through other forms of media. Hence the current celebrity culture. We raise the profile of people so much so that they themselves have to continue to pretend to be what they are not just to keep us satisfied.
I recently heard of people who attend all sorts of conferences organised by millionaires, giving them suggestions of how they can become millionaires. They use up all their megre salaries to travel and to pay for these conferences. There was one such conference that gave them some exercises to do daily including pulling their ears, jumping on one feet and shouting ‘ I am millionaire’. They looked very silly indeed but the hunger for knowledge and for money so they can buy some happiness made them not question what they were being told. It was very sad also to realise that most of them were in debt due to the amount of money they spent on these ‘get rich quick’ conferences. All this in the pursuit of happiness.
People pay good money to be entertained by comedy. Just to laugh and while they are there, for a few minutes they can forget about their problems.
But as you well know, doing drugs, drinking, over eating or not eating, sex, comedy etc all do not hold the key to lasting happiness. They actually costs us a lot if we do not have balance in our lives.
Where does true happiness come from? The lasting one? The one that does not need regular top ups and hasn’t got the tendency to take over our lives, our health and sanity? Where can we find such happiness?
I will be interested to know what your response is.
In my opinion, It is only found in the place of inner peace, equilibrium where that hole in us is filled. It is the same emptiness in all of us and it has the same solution.
Believe me this is not a cliche – only God can satisfy that deep need. And the way to know that you are satisfied is when you are no longer striving to maintain what you have by relying on outside influences.
This is what the Holy Bible says;
‘For my people have committed two evils; they have forsaken me the fountain of living waters, and hewed them out cisterns, broken cisterns, that can hold no water’. (Jeremiah 2:13 KJV).
‘Jesus answered and said unto her, Whosoever drinketh of this water shall thirst again: But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life. The woman saith unto him, Sir, give me this water, that I thirst not, neither come hither to draw’.(John 4:13-15 KJV).