Every now and then you get some random thought or idea from the world around you. You look at the way the people see the world, and that glimpse from a different set of eyes offers you something. You get to see the world with another set of senses. You can see it from a way another person sees it, and even if the view is close to yours, it will always be different. It is not right or wrong, it just simply is. So here I am working on school work, reviewing notes, and watching my thoughts shift. I would like to think I gathered a unique insight for myself. This view point added to mine gave that little nugget of knowledge. Knowledge of course is the great tool of life after all.
So trying to formulate my thoughts into coherent sentences in regards to my presentation on Wednesday, I have come up with the argument I will need to present. You see most people are incapable of being happy for more than a short period of time. It is not their fault either. They do what most good people do and they strive to hold to values that they are conditioned with. They seek what they are told will give them happiness. They fortify the beliefs that those items will make them happy because they perceive others as being happy. They hold to ideas that have worked for others, and ignore what could work for them.
We are taught early on to seek external validation. We chase that carrot on a stick. Instead of being pleased by our own efforts, we find a brief second of joy in the praise or attentions of other people. While this is not an unhealthy thing, we start to make it unhealthy with conditioning. Its starts with our parents, or parental figures offering us attention or affection for doing a good job. Over the course of our life it is evolved and altered to a point that it becomes unhealthy and limits our ability to hold and sustain a period of happiness longer then a few moments. Joy overcomes us in little steps. It is the applause of the audience after a performance, or the envious gaze our neighbor gives us when we step out of our new car. Our happiness is linked to the external validation of others.
Over time this seeps deep into our thought process, and even now with thought, it is hard for us to separate the conditioning from our own inner desires. It is when you can see those things and except your own inner process that you can truly attain freedom. In gaining that freedom you get two things, personal responsibility and the ability to sustain happiness. Look to your thoughts, and really tear into them. Ask yourself are they your own, or merely the reflection of conditioning you have received from society. Does that huge house on the hill make you happy? If it does, why? Is it because the house measures you against others? Is it because somebody else desires it? Is it because you saw somebody else appear to be happy in a similar house? Maybe it just makes you happy because it appeases a desire that is your own, and not the standards that others have imposed on you.
This process starts simply. Step one is you have to stop caring more about the needs, desires, or standards of others. This is not say that you have to abandon morality, but rather abandon yourself to your sense of self. We are all hardwired to tell something is good or bad, and while something may give off the perception of being good, our gut will tell us if this self destructive. Then and only then can you start the process of personal validation. Then you can truly be free, and free to pursue your own happiness. You are not happy, not because you have not achieved the standards and requirements established by others, but rather you will not allow it. You are not happy because you are in conflict with yourself. You have to much noise in your head to think. You have to let go of the noise, and listen to your voice. Conventions and norms are for the normal, and none of us are normal. That is a statistical improbability.
In this quest to be self validating you will also find you are better to those in your community. Through being selfish in some areas, you will find that being selfless is easier as well. I can now serve my community better, because I am not bringing bullshit or baggage to the table, but rather making a meaningful and valid contribution. I do not need their approval, and through that, I will receive it. Think of this in the basic terms of human desire. We associate happiness with that basic emotion called love. How can you give or receive love to another person if you can not love yourself? If you can not love yourself, then how can you even be aware of what it is in the first place? If you hate or despise yourself, and can not offer yourself unconditional love, all you have is codependency wrapped in social lusting.
It is not an easy thing to deal with with the bombardment of self debasing bullshit we are buried under every day. Art is valued by its dollar value. Movies are judged by how well they do in the box office. Appearance is part style, and style is typically what clothing did you spend your money on. These external consumer things offer us the praise of others, and that praise feels good. We push to be noticed and forgo the personal joys that we can and should allow ourselves. We stop ourselves from enjoying the things that make us happy or comfortable, simply because nobody noticed the event, commented on our clothing, or told us what we cooked tasted good. It is not enough to be happy with our own creation or expression. It is because of this that we are unhappy, and can only experience being happy in small doses, and even that fleeting happiness is hollow.
So for one day try to accept your own satisfaction. Try to do the things that make you happy regardless of the praise or condemnation of others. Dress how you wish to dress, and dance like no one is watching. Free yourself from that crushing pressure of standards you will never live up too, or those desires that belong to other people. Do what makes you happy, and do it with a smile, knowing that as the center of your own universe it is only your opinion that matters. It is only your love that you need. It is only your desires that you can fulfill. When this happens you will find that all of the rest will just fucking happen.
You never find love if you look for it. So when you stop looking outward, someone worth loving will come to you. Others will praise you, because you are not seeking their love. You community will enjoy your prosperity with you. That smile you offer will become contagious. You lack of external judgment will gain your the affection of others, and they won't even be sure or know why they are happy to be around you. Essentially the grass is only greener on the others side of the fence because you are not watering your own lawn. Friends like to visit friends that have a clean and interesting house. How clean is your own house? How much baggage do you have laying around that you are simple not willing to get rid of. It is your choice to be happy, and it does not lie in the hands of another living soul.