My question may seem absurd, since we all want to be happy. But if you observe human behavior in general, and your own in particular, it’s amazing how irrational and self-sabotaging we humans can be. A simple example is wanting to feel good yet indulging in activities or foods that aren’t that great for your health or state of mind.
More often than not, your mind and your heart aren’t in alignment, so you’re pulled in different directions or confused about your own desires and impulses. And you’re not alone; you and everyone else operate from unconscious motivations the ego-mind uses to keep the control of your perception, which in turn creates your experience of reality.
In this sense, until you become increasingly self-aware, your ego is in control of your behavior, owning your impulses, desires, reactions, and experiences (see Without Self-Awareness All You Can See Is Ego). Its purpose is to make them individualized, but this comes at a price: that of feeling isolated and disconnected from the totality of life—or your true Self.
From a spiritual or yogic perspective, the ego is the principle of individuality, a modification of the Self or Divine Consciousness on a scavenger hunt to experience itself in a myriad forms. This illusion happens when the mind identifies with the sensory perception of the physical body that creates a sense of separation or otherness. As a result, the Self you truly are gets distorted by the ego-mind as subjective and objective reality (“me” vs. “others.”).
Then it produces a continuous flow of thoughts and desires, which in turn engender attachment, aversion, and fear, to keep you busy and focused outwards. Attachment arises from the desire for pleasurable experiences; aversion, which is a reverse form of attachment, from the fear of painful ones.
True Happiness Is Your Divine Nature
However, since nothing is ever permanent, chasing desires often leads to suffering. If an experience is painful, you suffer through it, and if it’s pleasurable, you suffer when it ends, which prompts you to continue chasing other desires. In this sense, when directed outwards, the ego-mind is your attachment to pain, which is the exact opposite of the happiness for which you yearn. Quite a conundrum, isn’t it?
Although the nature of desire is that of dissatisfaction, the issue is not the desire itself. Desires move you forward in the direction of your destiny, even if you don’t get to fulfill them (unless, of course, you get lost in them). The problem is your attachment to things and people triggered by desires, because it creates wrong ideas about yourself through an illusion of ownership that pinches you out of the flow of life.
When you attach to the object of your desire, you start investing emotional energy in it, thus producing expectations and self-images that prevent you from being present, connected to the flow of your life as it unfolds (see How To Live Your Life With Presence). Now, if you follow a desire without attachment, you relinquish the sense of ownership (and “doership”) of your ego, therefore renouncing the inevitable suffering associated with it.
Every single moment offers two possible experiences of reality. If there’s attachment, aversion, or fear, you’re letting the ego-mind have the control of your perception, which means you’re headed toward illusions or resistance ultimately leading to pain. This can take many forms, such as anger, jealousy, sadness, disappointment, grief, or despair.
But if you simply embrace the moment as it comes, and let it go as it ends, you remain anchored in the present, flowing with life, and open to new possibilities. This leads to inner peace and happiness, because you stay centered in the pure Awareness you really are that dissolves the distortions tainting your experience of reality. Remembering that every moment is bound to pass, you don’t resist or cling to anything, free from the fluctuations of ego.
Happiness is your true nature; this is why you yearn for it. Without the contrast of polarities created by the ego-mind, you’d never search for it in the only place it can really be found: within you. However, you need guidance and support to clear your mind and give yourself permission to be happy. So contact me today to embark on a soul-guided journey toward emotional and spiritual freedom, to uncover the truth of who you are!
© 2021 Yol Swan. All rights reserved.