“There are two kinds of happiness – the temporary pleasure derived primarily from material comfort alone and another more enduring comfort that results from the thorough transformation and development of the mind. We can see in our own lives that the latter form of happiness is superior because when our mental state is calm and happy, we can easily put up with minor pains and physical discomforts. On the other hand, when our mind is restless and upset, the most comfortable physical facilities do not make us happy”.
The Dalai Lama
I think every one of us would have experienced these two kinds of happiness from time to time – the temporal happiness that is mainly derived from physical comfort and the deeper, more enduring happiness that comes from a peaceful and contented state of mind. I agree the latter kind of happiness is superior as it helps one develop an inner strength and fortitude. For example, I have read about cases of those who have come to terms with their terminal illness after a period of denial and depression and they become amazingly calm and peaceful about their imminent death, despite the discomfort they were going through.
In another scenario, I have also read about people who have mentally prepared to bear hardship, such as prisoners of war or ultra marathon runners, and they would come to a place of experiencing an inner sense of bliss in the midst of going through tough physical circumstances. I think we all can come to that place of a deeper happiness too as it is within the reach of each person.
- “I Feel Very Happy.” (baseballzen9.wordpress.com)
- The 9 Timeless Secrets of Being Happy (hlomies.wordpress.com)
- Worm Chow: The Spiritual Journey by The Dalai Lama (redonlinefotos.wordpress.com)
- On Human Compassion: Encountering The Dalai Lama’s Scientific Mind (npr.org)