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Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Home, A Place of Happiness

I can’t hide the fact that when I wrote the last entry Longing for a Place to Call Home, I was gripped by fear. Fear of change as I was embarking into the unknown. Today, I realise that I was too attached to an ideal state of happiness. As if there’s a particular location which guarantees one’s happiness. I was also afraid of change and a transition that appeared to threaten the very core of who I am.

Even if I still feel a strong need to be in silence and for contemplation, the fact is that it was a mistake to think that a particular place can guarantee my peace and happiness. I realise that I can be in that place of peace in the present, wherever I am. Happiness, I am reminded, isn’t something that can be bought or attained by external objects. While objects we desire might give us momentary happiness, the feeling quickly fades away. And we find ourselves longing, wanting and craving for another object which appears to hold the promise of happiness.

Now that eight days have passed since I moved in to my new house, I am hopeful that it’ll become my home as well. I have learned a lot from my own self and in relating to the others who are sharing in this experience. I know that I may still be scared of change. I learned that when it feels I’m isolated, instead of reaching out to people, I tend to distance myself more. And, most importantly, I have realised that the more we hide from what seems to be an oppressive reality, the more problems and challenges appear insurmountable - until the only reaction is for us to escape or deny ourselves the chance to explore other possibilities or solutions.

This post appears to be a happy ending to a tale that appeared to end on a tragic note. However, these last hours have opened my mind to the possibility that, maybe, if I wasn’t so resistant to change, I could make things work. I can always find a place of peace and refuge in my heart. I recognise that there can be no lasting happiness in a material world that remains impermanent, prone to a cycle of entropy. I can’t even be sure of a reality beyond this life. However, what I am sure of is that as long as I remain aware of the present moment and appreciate its preciousness and uniqueness, I can be truly happy.

Life may be hard or draw us in moments of sadness and melancholy. We may be robbed of all our possessions and denied our friends. And, still, we can be happy. Yes, this is a tall order and I’m still far off from achieving such kind of happiness. For one can be rich or have all the things one desires and still be unhappy. Indeed, happiness isn’t simply an emotion or a feeling. 

Happiness is a state of being...

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