06.22: Happiness: Three unworthy Us vs one worthy U
All of us instinctively long for happiness; most of us presume that becoming happy necessitates acquiring lots of wealth for purchasing the things that will make us happy. However, the pursuit of wealth as a source of happiness inevitably frustrates us due to one of the three Us:
1. Unattainable: We may crave and strive to acquire lots of wealth, but due to external difficulties or internal deficiencies, we may not attain it despite lifelong endeavor.
2. Unsustainable: Even if we do attain it, we cannot sustain it for long. It will definitely be ripped away from us at the time of death – and possibly even before that by forces beyond our control.
3. Unreliable: Even while wealth stays by our side, it cannot be relied upon to protect us from sources of misery like relationship ruptures, affliction with incurable diseases, and death of loved ones. Even when these calamities don’t befall us, wealth and the things it can buy rarely retain their charm for long. Their charm, which is almost irresistible as long as we don’t have them, soon fades off after we get them and leaves us pining for more.
Wealth is thus unworthy of the fanatical reverence that we shower on it. The only source of happiness that is truly worthy of our efforts is one that is unalienable; once we get it, it should stay with us forever. That unalienable source is love for God. Once we develop that divine love, nothing can stop us from connecting constantly with God, who is the treasurehouse of unlimited happiness.
No wonder then that the Gita (6.22) declares that those who have achieved love of God can no longer be seduced by the material lure of more.
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