The Happiness of Every Person Is Precious
Happiness is natural for humans. Happiness is the natural goal of each human life. We evolved to use our talents and abilities to fulfill our potential for full life. We evolved to survive and flourish. To flourish means to be happy. We evolved to be fulfilled as a whole person in our relationships with self, other people, all of existence and the Divine Harmony. We evolved with all our unique, personal talents and abilities to live our personal, unique natural fulfillment as a whole person – our happiness.
We humans have tried heroic materialism, chasing after more and more things, and found that this life was empty, raising up a deep spiritual longing for something more meaningful and fulfilling to life. That something is happiness; to be what you evolved to be.
Happiness is unique to each individual. What makes one person happy will not make another person happy. You must each seek, find and live your unique personal happiness. That is your ultimate individual responsibility. No one knows how to do it for you. You must seek the answers inside your self and with the guidance of inner friendship. Only then will you find your personal Golden Path to your fulfillment as a whole person, your happiness. You are responsible for your happiness. Go find it, live it and enjoy it. That is the continuing joy of life.
Some people filled with emptiness and boredom say, “Is that all there is to life?” They have not discovered the fountain of full life that continues to flow throughout life from pursuing and achieving your personal happiness. They continually look outside for excitement and meaning in life, and fail. Every religion and way of life knows how to look inside yourself to find the path to your personal fulfillment as a whole person in your circumstances. It is said that 90% of what happens to you depends on your responses to life. Some researchers say that you have control over 40% of your life to make you happy. Whether you are happy of not is up to you. Happiness is there for you, if you will learn how and live it. Your religion or way of life has the teachings to show you how to receive continual personal guidance toward your personal happiness throughout your life at any age. Find those principles and live them.
Who will decide what you will do and if you will be happy? Freedom is the power to respond to be happy. Power means the ability to decide how you are going to respond to life. What are you going to do with your life, and who is going to decide that, you or someone else?
There is only so much power to respond to life to go around. If most of the people give their power to respond to life to someone else, such as the government or the king, or a dominant personality, they have lost their freedom to decide how to respond to life to be happy. This was how the great human projects were built in he past, with mass human labor, either slave labor, or peasant or serf labor.
Today mass human labor is not needed so much, because of the machines. Today an individual can produce and market his or her creativity to the global marketplace with the aid of machines, and eat and live without intervention by others. Such a free entrepreneur is able to purse his or her happiness by responding to the environment righteously, however, he or she chooses. That individual has kept the power of his or her own freedom to respond to be happy.
This new circumstance places a new responsibility on the individual to become an entrepreneur, defend his or her freedom to decide how to respond to life, and pursue his or her happiness. Earning ones’s own way in the world and avoiding crushing debt to others, or oppressive government or groups of people, becomes the path to happiness through individual responsibility. Those who rise to this responsibility will have a better chance at happiness. Those, whether male or female, who let others be responsible for them, will not.
As long as you are living above the poverty line, you can be about as happy as anyone else. People all over the world, who are living above the poverty line, report about the same level of happiness, no matter how much money they have. Everyone above the poverty line can be happy, and many below the poverty line, if they will concentrate their lives on achieving their natural happiness.
We live our happiness in service to self, other people, all of existence and especially the Divine Harmony. We are part of the natural goodness of the universe. When we each are happy, when we live a fulfilled life as a whole person, we are living as we evolved to live, as we were created to live, and we do our part of the human cosmic duty to create new existence, nurture others to do the same, and nurture E V E, the global knowledge civilization to blossoming in full bloom and reproduction many times.
It is therefore important to the individual, the knowledge civilization, the universe and the
Divine Harmony that every person be happy and be all he or she can be. Therefore the happiness of every person is precious.
You pursue your happiness by living righteously, by responding rightly in your circumstances. How do you know how to respond righteously? You have unique, personal guidance to your personal happiness available to you from inner friendship. Your pursuit of your unique, personal happiness is guided by loving intimate inner friendship, and your loving, faith community. It takes them both.
Inner friendship is profoundly important in this age of individualism growing all around the Earth. The reason is that each individual’s happiness is unique, because each individual is unique, with a different set of talents, abilities and circumstances in life. Now the machines allow each individual to produce and market his or her creativity, and gain the individual’s fulfillment as a whole person: to be happy.
If you believe in the natural, your inner friend is a personality deep in your unconscious, who knows better than you do how you should respond to achieve your fulfillment as a whole person in your circumstances. This inner friend loves you, cares for you and wants you to succeed in life, to be all you can be and to be happy. There are many techniques for communicating with your natural inner friend: meditation, projections with art, Neuro Linguistic Programming and dream analysis, to name a few of the more prominent and successful ones. Begin to listen. Find your own inner friend. Develop your techniques of communication, and receive the precious intimate, personal guidance for successful life in your circumstances from your inner friend.
If you believe in the supernatural, your inner friend is the Divine Harmony, as you understand the Divine Harmony, or an angel, spirit, saint, ancestor or other supernatural presence, with whom you can comfortably communicate. You begin your inner friendship with prayer. Then you listen, not expecting to hear anything. Eventually you will hear voices, hunches or thoughts moving through your mind. Let them flow. One particular thought may be noticeable or come back several times. This may be a message. Hear it. Put it into words, remember it. Now you have a message to consider. Once you have a message to consider from your inner friendship, it does not matter whether it was from a natural or supernatural source. You now have a duty to discern where it came from. It may be from your inner friend, the Divine Harmony, in which case it is called “fire” as from the Holy Spirit in Christian terms. If so, you should act on it, follow it and do it.
However, it may be from some selfish or evil source, in which case it is called “wildfire” and you should not act on it. You should not follow it and you should not do it.
How do you discern messages from you inner voices as fire or wildfire? The answer is to compare the message with the accumulated wisdom of your faith community. Does your scripture support such an action. If one is living in a faith community with people who are living the lifestyle of the religion or way of life, does this message fit that lifestyle; does it seem reasonable to you; does it seem to be what the Divine Harmony would want you to do, or does it seem selfish, self centered, mean or destructive? Would you want someone else to do that to you?
It is your duty to discern whether this message is fire or wild fire, before you act on it or discard it. Only you can decide. You will live with the consequences. You cannot escape this responsibility to discern. However, if you will listen for your inner guidance and responsibly discern before acting, you will achieve your unique, personal fulfillment as a whole person, in your relationships with self, other people, all of existence and the Divine Harmony -the goal of your life: happiness.
The Buddha said that a person needed right association before he tried to live righteously on the Eight-Fold Path. It matters what your environment is when you seek to be happy. In theory, you can be happy anywhere, but it is far more difficult in a destructive environment.
The human personality responds to an environment by forming an identity that typically makes responses that are adaptive for the individual in that environment.
If the environment is hostile and violent, the personality will develop an identity that will be adaptive in that environment, with response patterns and attitudes that foster intimidation and control, or fear and avoidance. If the environment contains drug users and dealers who are constantly pushing drugs on the individual, it will be very difficult to give up drug addiction in order to live a full life. Even a polite social environment, filled with alcohol and drugs as a way of life, will make avoiding addiction and a full life difficult. The answer is to find a community that nurtures a heathy, safe lifestyle, and develop an identity that adapts successfully to that environment, which is likely tom produce a fulfilled life as a whole person and happiness.
One way to find a positive environment for the pursuit of happiness as a whole person is in a supportive faith community. Find a community in your faith that focuses on the Principles of Harmony in the scripture and tradition of your faith, and lives by those principles. Then it will be easier for you to live by these Principles of Harmony too, in the new global knowledge civilization, and achieve your natural fulfilled life as a whole person-your goal in life, your happiness. Find a community of your faith who believe in global peace, genuine tolerance of other religions, respecting them as right for their faithful for now, until the Divine Harmony changes people’s hearts. Live, love and be fulfilled as a whole person in all your relationships in this peaceful, supportive faith community.
Now put your inner friendship and your faith community together to serve your wholeness well. From your inner friendship, get your personal guidance for how to respond to life toward your fulfillment as a whole person in your circumstances . Then use your peaceful faith community and it’s teachings, wisdom and experience to discern whether the messages you are getting from your inner friend are fire or wild fire. It is the balanced partnership of inner friendship, tempered and assisted by your peaceful, supportive faith community that leads to successful guidance toward your unique, personal fulfillment as a whole person. This is how you relate day to day and moment to moment to the Divine Harmony.
You can be happy. Your inner friendship and your peaceful faith community will lead you to it. Nurture them.
The following is Chapter 2 from The Principles of Harmony for Global Peace. It is the Chapter that describes the Principle of Harmony that the Happiness of Every Person Is Precious. Then it gives quotations, which express that Principles of Harmony, in eight different religions and ways of life.
Principle of Harmony:
The Happiness of Every Person
(Fulfillment As A Whole Person)
Happiness is the goal of human life. Happiness is becoming all one can be, all one evolved to be, in harmonious fulfillment of all one’s talents and abilities as a whole person throughout one’s lifetime in one’s circumstances. A person becomes fulfilled as a whole person in relationships with self, other people, all of existence and the Divine Harmony, by using, in a balanced, harmonious way in such relationships, all of one’s talents and abilities, mentally, physically, emotionally and spiritually. A person who is fulfilled as a whole person is a balanced, harmonious person, free to responsibly develop new creativity, to organize his or her world, to be an entrepreneur, a provider, protector, procreator and nurturer of others to lead them to full life as a whole person. This is experiencing life as it was meant to be. In so doing and so being, one is a servant of the Divine Harmony, advancing the Divine Harmony’s plan for the universe. This is the reward of maturity, being all you can be, living as you evolved to live, living fully as you were created to live, living in the center of your natural harmony as a whole being. This is the goal of every human life. Therefore it is precious, and every person should nurture one’s self and nurture every other person to achieve this goal. The happiness of every person is precious.
Buddhism: The Happiness Of Every Person Is Precious
The Buddha’s Eightfold Path “intends nothing less than to pick one up where one is and set one down as a different human being, one who has been cured of crippling disabilities.” “Happiness he who seeks may win,” Buddha said, “if he practice.” Smith, p. 104.
The Eightfold Path:
1. Right Views
2. Right Intent
3. Right Speech
4. Right Conduct
Do not kill
Do not steal
Do not lie
Do not be unchaste
Do not drink intoxicants
5. Right Livelihood
6. Right Effort
7. Right Mindfulness
8. Right Concentration
Christianity: The Happiness Of Every Person Is Precious
Jesus said, “I have come that they may have life and have it to the full.” John10:10 (NIV)
Jesus said, “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”
Matthew 11: 28-29 (NIV).
Jesus said, “As the father has loved me, so I have loved you. Now remain in my love. If you obey my commands, you will remain in my love, just as I have obeyed my Father’s commands and remain in his love. I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and your joy may be complete.” John 15: 9-11 (NIV).
Jesus said, “I tell you the truth, my Father will give you what ever you ask in my name. Until now you have not asked for anything in my name. Ask and you will receive and your joy will be complete.” John16: 23-24 (NIV).
Confucianism: The Happiness Of Every Person Is Precious
Chaun-sun Shih asked what he should practice.
“Let your speech be loyal and reliable; your actions sincere and respectful. Even among the barbarians you can do this. On the other hand, if your speech is not loyal and reliable, and your actions are not sincere and respectful, you will not be able to carry on either over a wide area or in a town. When you are standing, imagine that you can see these principles present in your companions. When you are in your carriage, imagine that you see them leaning against the cross-pole. In this way you will come to practice them.”
Chaun-sun Shih wrote this down on his sash. Sayings of Confucius XV: 6
“Great Man, out of a sense of pride, does not engage in strife; out of consideration for the group as a whole he does not join cliques.” Sayings of Confucius XV: 22
“Great Man does not accept a man for his words alone; he does not reject a suggestion because of the man alone.” Sayings of Confucius XV: 23
Tuan-mu Tz’u inquired, “Is there one word that will keep us on the path to the end of our days?”
“Yes. Reciprocity! What you do not wish yourself, do not do unto others.”
Sayings of Confucius XV: 24
Hinduism: The Happiness Of Every Person Is Precious
Hindus speak of the depth at which the Eternal is buried under the almost impenetrable mass of distractions, false assumptions, and self-regarding instincts that comprise our surface selves. A lamp can be covered with dust and dirt to the point of obscuring its light completely. The problem life poses for the human self is to cleanse the dross of its being to the point where it infinite center can shine forth in full display. Smith, p. 22
It is better to strive in one’s own dharma than to succeed in the dharma of another. Nothing is ever lost in following one’s own dharma, but competition in another’s dharma breeds fear and insecurity. Gita 3: 35
Just as fire is covered by smoke and a mirror is obscured by dust, just as the embryo rests deep within the womb, knowledge is hidden by selfish desire-hidden, Arjuna, by this unquenchable fire for self-satisfaction, the inveterate enemy of the wise.
Gita 3: 38-39
Islam: The Happiness Of Every Person Is Precious
If you will use My bounties beneficently, I will surely multiply them unto you. Qur’an 14: 8
Have We not made the earth a bed and driven in the mountains as stakes? We have created you in pairs, and made your sleep a source of rest and made night a covering, and made day for the activities of life. We have built above you seven heavens and made the sun a brightly burning lamp. We send down from the dripping clouds water pouring forth abundantly, that We may bring forth thereby grain and vegetation, and luxuriant gardens. Qur’an 78: 7-17
Verily, for the righteous there is felicity: walled gardens and grape-vines, and young maidens of equal age, and overflowing cups. Therein will they hear no idle talk, nor any untruth: a recompense in proportion to their works from thy Lord, the Lord of the heavens and the earth and all that is between them, the Gracious one. Qur’an 78: 32-40
Allah has promised those among you who believe and act righteously that He will surely make them Successors in the earth… Qur’an 24: 56
Allah guides whomever He pleases to the right path. Qur’an 2: 214
Judaism: The Happiness Of Every Person Is Precious
I know there is nothing better for men than to be happy and do good while they live. That everyone may eat and drink, and find satisfaction in all his toil – this is the gift of God. Ecclesiastes 3:12-13. (NIV)
Blessed is the man
who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked
or stand in the way of sinners
or sit in the seat of mockers.
But his delight is in the law of the Lord,
and on his law he meditates day and night.
He is like a tree planted by streams of water,
which yields its fruit in season
and whose leaf does not wither
what ever he prospers.
Not so the wicked!
They are like chaff that blows away.
Therefore the wicked shall not stand in the judgement,
nor sinners in the assembly of the righteous.
For the Lord watches over the way of the righteous,
but the wicked will perish. Psalm 1: 1-6(NIV)
Naturalism: The Happiness Of Every Person Is Precious
Bill Moyers interviewed Joseph Campbell about mythology and life in a television series entitled The Power of Myth. In the introduction to the book from the series he said:
He taught, as great teachers teach by example. It was not his manner to try to talk anyone into anything (except once, when he persuaded Jean to marry him). Preachers err, he told me, by trying “to talk people into belief; better they reveal the radiance of their own discovery.” How he did reveal a joy for learning and living!
He agreed that the “guiding idea” of his work was to find “the commonality of themes in world myths. Pointing to a constant requirement in the human psyche for a centering in terms of deep principles.”
“Your talking about a search for the meaning of life?” I asked.
“No, no, no,” he said. “For the experience of being alive.”
Bill Moyers Introduction in The Power of Myth, Flowers, Ed, p. xiv
Arnold Toynbee in A Study of History analyzed all known civilizations to understand their growth, breakdown and disintegration. He stated at the end of his chapter on The Nature of Growths of Civilizations:
“We conclude that a given series of successful responses to successive challenges is to be interpreted as a manifestation of growth if, as the series proceeds, the action tends to shift from the field of an external environment, physical or human, to the for interieur of the growing personality or civilization. In so far as this grows and continues to grow, it has to reckon less and less with challenges delivered by external forces and demanding responses on an outer battlefield, and more and more with challenges that are presented by itself to itself in an inner arena. Growth means that the growing personality or civilization tends to become its own environment and its own challenger and its own field of action. In other words, the criterion of growth is progress towards self-determination; and progress towards self-determination is a prosaic formula for describing the miracle by which Life enters into its Kingdom.” A Study of History, Toynbee, p. 208.
The whole inner psychic reality of each individual is ultimately oriented toward this archetypal symbol of the Self.
In practical terms this means that the existence of human beings will never be satisfactorily explained in terms of isolated instincts or purposive mechanisms such as hunger, power, sex, survival, perpetuation of the species, and so on. That is, man’s main purpose is not to eat, drink, etc., but to be human. Von Franz in Man and His Symbols,: Jung, Ed., p. 202.
Taoism: The Happiness Of Every Person Is Precious
Fame or integrity: which is more important?
Money or happiness: which is more valuable?
Success or failure: which is more destructive?
If you look to others for fulfillment,
you will never be truly fulfilled.
If your happiness depends on money,
you will never be happy with yourself.
Be content with what you have;
rejoice in the way things are.
When you realize there is nothing lacking,
the whole world belongs to you.
Tao Te Ching No. 44
If you want to become whole,
let yourself become partial.
If you want to become straight,
let yourself become crooked.
If you want to become full,
let yourself become empty.
If you want to be reborn,
let yourself die.
If you want to be given everything,
give everything up.
The Master, by residing in the Tao,
sets an example for all beings.
Because he doesn’t display himself,
people can see his light.
Because he has nothing to prove,
people can trust his words.
Because he doesn’t know who he is,
people recognize themselves in him.
Because he has no goal in mind,
everything he does succeeds.
When the ancient Masters said,
“If you want to be given everything,
give everything up,”
they weren’t using empty phrases.
Only in being lived by the Tao
can you be truly yourself.
Tao Te Ching No. 22