Yoga: Finding purpose in happiness
From as early as I can remember, having fun was equivalent to being naughty, even if we were behaving acceptably. From day dreaming in the class room, to making a mess in the living room, to giggling loudly when parents were trying to watch the telly, behaviour which brought joy into my life was frequently reprimanded and as a result, a feeling of guilt would often ensue when indulging in such activities.
As a result, I often find myself feeling guilty for pursuing a career that I love, which doesn’t feel like a job when I’m doing it simply because it is so enjoyable. It doesn’t feel like work so how can it be? Is it fair that I get to pursue something I love when so many find themselves sitting behind desks working jobs that they hate? And then I remember that it is. Why? Because we have freedom of choice.
There have been times in my life when freedom has seemed elusive. Illusive if you will. Something that doesn’t actually exist. What I didn’t realise at the time however, was that I was allowing the chase for money and stability to guide me instead of my heart strings. The thing is, we are on this Earth to bring love, joy and happiness to ourselves and those around us but we can’t bring it to others if we don’t have it ourselves.
So how about looking at things this way. If our purpose is to be happy, it’s our duty to find joy in each and every day, especially when all we have is the present. How yoga and Buddhism can help is in teaching us how to cultivate this in our every day lives so that it goes beyond the sensory joyful fleeting moments we experience to a deeper sense of contentment within. Here the Dalai Lama discusses beautifully, the concept of happiness…