What I’ve Learnt About Happiness In My Years Searching For It

Published in Scribble on Jul 10, 2018

True happiness is not to be had in this world. It is an illusion. A figment of our imagination. Nature has planted in man a desire for which on earth she has provided no adequate satisfaction. The search for happiness is not only futile but, also, an endeavour hungry for wasted efforts.

For man to be truly happy, all his desires must be satisfied. A quest that is impossible in itself. For as long as there is life, there will be change. As long as there is change, man will develop new desires as the old ones die. It is a circle, an endless loop. Life is a means to and end — True Happiness. A truly happy man is a dead man.

With that being said, I, still, am of the belief that the day you stop chasing after happiness is the day you stop living. This life is an engine, and the fuel is the pursuit of happiness. It is what keeps us going. How unmeaning life would be without this GREAT YEARN. Nature demands it. She put you on this earth and commanded, “be happy”.

"Man is not the measure of his happiness any more than of his health"

The food that one eats for nourishment and to be healthy, may turn out to be his poison; Where he looks for happiness, he may find misery, sorrow and distress. Often times, people search for happiness in the wrong places.

It was new year, 2015. I was, still, in University. I decided, that, that year was the year I would be happy. Friends posted very beautiful selfies on Instagram — “looking peng and shit”. They snapchat’ed themselves having fun with friends and family. They always seemed very happy in all of the posts. They still do. So I thought, maybe thats IT. My depression and anxiety was as a result of me staying away from everyone. Locking myself away for weeks. Sometimes, even, months. So, I made a resolution that I would attend all the birthday parties, all the casual parties and would join my friends whenever they were going out which was usually on the weekends.

First few weeks, I did just that. I attended. I went along. I even posted some selfies on Instagram like they do — Making a point to my followers that I was also having fun. I snapchat’ed. Though, I was terrible at it. Simply put, I did all that they did. I experimented. Nothing changed. I was the same sad and depressed fool. In fact, It got worse because I forced myself to do what was really not my thing.

I often times feel alone in a room full of people. I spend a lot of time by myself creating, doing. I’ve had people say to me that I try too hard. That I need to relax, socialize and enjoy life more. They don’t know — Not a single clue in the world that, this is me enjoying life. I am happy because I create. I feel miserable not creating. I wake up each morning eager to create. I find happiness in creating.

Be settled with the idea that you are a very unique being. Your form of happiness is a very unique one. Be a student of your own existence. Honesty is key.

“Happiness is an act, not a state”

“To be up and doing”, that is happiness. Happiness of a man is not in him having something done to him. It is not in his ability to do something, but in his actually doing something. You are not happy because you are loved. You are not happy because you have someone to love. You are happy because you love someone. If that makes any sense.

You are not happy for having received a gift. You may be excited — a fleeting form that masquerades as happiness. You are not happy for having something or someone to give. True happiness is in giving. People who tend to take a lot more than they give find themselves outside the gates of happiness.

It is an ever-going process. It is not ‘true happiness’ if it comes and goes. It should be absolute.

“Contentment is not happiness”

“One maybe content with little but, it takes an immensity of good to satisfy all his desires”, thereby, making him absolutely happy. When we say we are content, we are admitting to ourselves that we should naturally desire more but, realizing that more is not to be had, acquiesce in our present reality.

Contentment is an island of ‘satisfiables’ in a sea of endless desires. It guarantees peace of mind. It could be one of those factors that must be present for one to be even considered on his way to true happiness. Moderating one’s desires and aspirations to guarantee inner peace is contentment; Something that is far away from the concept that is True Happiness. For happiness to be true, it must be absolute.

People that are content, also, happen to be the ones who stop growing. They have cut the journey short because they can not withstand the discomfort that comes with it. They are not happy people. They are people who have settled for less; People who have given up the fight for true happiness. They parade themselves as ‘realists’. They sit on piles of misery and distress which in time will swallow them up. They are nothing short of pretenders; Very poor actors and too arrogant to realize it.

"Civilization is not happiness"

You can have all the technological advancements at your disposal and still be unhappy. There are people who live in the most remote and impoverished parts of the world who are arguably one of the most happiest people on this Earth.

Your worldly possession is not directly proportional to your happiness. “How else do you explain a bunch of billionaires that killed themselves?”. They only fuel your ambition for worldly success; And of course, there is nothing wrong with worldly success.

The ‘pursuit of happiness’ is a very lonely journey, a very egoistic one. The earlier you realize this, the better off you are. Due to its absolute nature, you can’t have your happiness dependent, entirely or partially, on another entity or being. We are very fragile by design. It is in our nature to disappoint.

On this earth We may attain to contentment, and to some happiness, but never to ‘true happiness’. That doesn’t mean we should sit back and give up on the pursuit. When we do that, we stop living. The ‘pursuit’ is ‘living’.

Nature does nothing in vain.