Trick your brain for Happiness.
All of us wish to be happy and we should be happy. We fix our attributes for being happy. We attach our joy to the circumstances, like an evening with friends, weekend romantic moments with our partner, time spent jogging or playing our favourite game, etc…
Indeed, we indulge ourselves in these activities and remain happy.
Let us analyse it further because we find a person who was happy yesterday is unhappy today or says he has become unhappy for some time. Why?
In Sanskrit, there are four words for happiness.
Sukha (Fleeting pleasure)
Mudita (Spiritual Happiness)
Ananda (The Bliss)
These are the four different levels of happiness. Together, they make up a path that leads us to happiness that really cannot be shaken.
Trick your brain for happiness= Fleeting Pleasure (Sukha)
Happiness that comes from pleasant experiences is Sukha. Sukh (Pleasure) is inseparably enjoyment, or comfort in a simple word. Sukha is the happiness we feel when we are firmly inside our comfort zone. We never think about the state that is a must for our happiness. We never think that a few of our comfort zone can disappear in the blink of an eye.
Sukha remains always linked with its opposite- Dukh (suffering)
This pain-pleasure dichotomy is one of the basic Conflicts. These pairs of opposites plague our lives. We live in the feeling of being separate from others and the world. Like hot and cold, birth and death, praise and blame, Sukh (Pleasure) and Dukh (Suffering) inevitably follow each other because our well-being depends on external conditions. It will always come and go. This problem Buddha noticed, which led him to formulate the first noble truth.
“All life involves suffering.”
Trick your brain for happiness- Contentment (Santosha)
The simple antidote to this problem of the endless chase after the mirage of fleeting pleasure is to cultivate Santosha (contentment) Santosha is essential because it is the easiest way to decrease the agitation which comes from frustration, discomfort, and unsatisfied desire.
Santosha is nothing but being satisfied with what we have. Accepting what we are, without feeling the need for anything extra to make us happy. Santosha is not having the desire for anything other than what we need. Thus, we achieve contentment. When we give up striving for what is out of our reach. We stop expecting more from life than it can give and let go of the mental patterns that destroy our satisfaction like comparing our skills, character, possessions, and inner attainments with the surrounding people.
Trick your brain for happiness- Spiritual Happiness (Mudita)
Practicing Santosha calms the mind. If we wish, we may step into the next level of happiness Mudita (Spiritual Happiness).
Mudita in its purest form is the joy that comes from out of nowhere. It is like a message from our deeper self, which has the power to change our state in an instant. It gives rise to feelings, such as gratitude, exaltation, equanimity, and the capacity to see beauty even in things we rarely find beautiful.
Mudita can be cultivated by practice.
When Mudita becomes our entire field of experience, we find ourselves in touch with the most profound level of joy: Ananda (Bliss). (In reality, bliss is too ordinary a word to convey what Ananda is.)
Ananda is ecstasy, the rapture, a joy that comes up on its own from the very depths of the universe and connects us instantly to the vastness of pure being. Ananda is the divine power in the form of happiness. When someone touches it, he knows, he has touched the deepest level of reality.
Ananda is nothing but unison with God. The same association of joy with divine experience can be found in Sufi poetry, in the Kabbalah, and writings of Christian mystics.
To end, I would like to mention Joy is like a butterfly that comes and sits on our hands but can never grasp or hold it.
Loving-kindness practice, being grateful to self and others, consciously letting go of grudges removes the sludge that builds up around the heart and keeps joy away.