The Search for Happiness

Praising the Sun

“Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony.”    Mahatma Gandhi 

The Search For Happiness
by Beach T. Weston
“Just Beachie Column”
September 2015

Ahhh…the search for happiness. Most of us spend our entire lives pursuing happiness. To have our cups runneth over with jubilation.

Some succeed.

Some find moments of happiness.

And for some, happiness is always elusive.

The Buddhist call this state of perfect happiness and peace, Nirvana. Where one transcends into bliss. There is no suffering. No desire or ego. It is as if the Angels open the golden gates of Heaven and gift complete joy, and enlightenment.

I believe in Nirvana because I have personally experienced paradise in this dimension. For me, Nirvana is a transformation from the chaos of the world to a place so perfect that I am truly at peace with everything and everyone—if only for brief moments. All is good. All is right.

My first remembrance of pure bliss was on a gorgeous summer afternoon—late August—Nevada’s West Walker River. I had comfortably plunked my derrière in the center of an inner tube, delighting in the river’s cool water. My dog, Snoopy, an ever so gentle Cocker Spaniel was my companion, and being true to his name was skillfully investigating the landscape. Snoopy used his fantastic sense of smell as did Sherlock Holmes when he used his astute abilities to solve difficult cases. And again true to his nature, Snoopy was always cracking the case of the mysterious smell.

There was vacant land for miles surrounding my afternoon joy. Not a soul in site. Across the river was a grove of Oak trees, which gave shade and sanctuary to many a critter. This particular group of trees were residents long before I was born and never failed to offer me a sense of tranquility.

This would have been a normal afternoon had it not been for the deer that casually walked out of the grove. It was a buck in velvet, its horns covered in a fur-like coat. At first, I thought he would see me and run, but instead he sauntered down to the river’s bank and began to nibble on the wild grass.

I purposely moved about in my inner tube to make sure the deer knew I was watching. The movement did not disturb him. I called Snoopy to my side and this did not disturb him. Snoopy and I continued to watch the deer’s every move. Our presence made no difference to his calm, carefree demeanor.

Being the animal lover I am, I began to talk to him. I told him how beautiful he was and how honored I was to be in his presence. And I explained that like himself, I was also a vegetarian. Now, I know when I tell this story one might consider my deer conversation to be, well, let’s say…odd. But in truth it was a delightful exchange.

 Our harmonious interaction went on for about five minutes before a Monarch Butterfly fluttered from the grove of old Oaks and began to dance around the deer’s antlers. I couldn’t believe what I was seeing, it was like being part of a Disney animation. The only thing missing was Bambi, Thumb…Thumb…Thumber and sweet smelling Flower the Skunk.

Snoopy was an exceptional canine, but he was a dog and I expected him to bark or growl or make some notice, but it seemed as if even he was awed by our new friends.

This magical moment continued for quite some time until the deer raised his head as if to say goodbye, turned and walked in a leisurely pace back into the grove, all the while the Monarch kept on dancing around his velvet.

It has been over thirty years since I experience that moment of magical bliss, but the memory, the emotion is as if it happened yesterday. I have experienced exquisite moments of Nirvana since then, but they are fleeting and I quickly return to the challenges of life.

I wonder if it is possible to live in a state of Nirvana 24/7. To experience every day of life as if it were Heaven on Earth. I wish I could tell you I know for sure it is possible, and everyone who pursues happiness will eventually find it and become the enlighten beings as is believed in Buddhism.

 Perhaps (Is it possible?) is a question all of us should ask ourselves. Perhaps we should never stop asking, and never stop pursuing happiness no matter the end result. For happiness gives hope and hope gives happiness.

In Peace and Love
Beach

 © Beach T. Weston 2016

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