Happy as can be? Truly? There’ve been millions of people in every age who’ve sought the elusive goal of happiness. Happiness, of course, is linked inextricably with peace. Peace could be defined as a healthy acceptance of the reality and demands of life, on life’s terms; not our own.
It helps if we peel this down. What are these realities and demands? And, what do we need to do about them?
People – our relationships. This is the single-most trying area. How often are we in irresolvable conflict with others? Are we getting our relationships right? Can we accept people’s views on things that we don’t understand? Are we seeking to understand? We must bring a ‘lightness’ to our world of interaction.
Time – our tasks. Are we trying to get too much from life by doing too many things at once? Are we too busy? This is self-defeating if we’re trying to achieve happiness through peace. At times we find it hard to say ‘no’ but to achieve all the contentment we can, we have to say ‘no’ occasionally--exercising discretion.
Money – our things and what we do. Be honest. Where does money come for you? Are you, in a sense, driven by working so hard to provide a ‘lifestyle to which you’ve become accustomed’? This is not the way to peace. Peace and money are antithetical.
Health – our respect for body, mind and soul. This is physical, mental, emotional and spiritual health, not simply physical. This is about balance and ensuring time for health, and the right behaviours to support health.
The law – our place in the world in accepting and obeying the rules of life. Having an acceptance of the law and obeying the prevailing laws is essentially a key test of our peace, presently and to come. Aligned closely with politics, law issues must be resolved in the mind with an allowance that others have different views.
Work – our vocation. Whether it’s paid or not, we gain the best sense of peace when we’re diligent. In our workplaces, we need to be both relational and also task-focused.
Family – our most important relationships; the loop back to our foundation. Peace and happiness within the familial context is surely the highest goal. If this cannot be attained, can happiness?
Does anything hold you but life itself? If something or someone does hold us, or many things, we, like a washing machine on a ‘spin-dry’ cycle, will be thrown out of balance. Peace would be near-on impossible to achieve given this set of circumstances.
Peace in all aspects of life is the key to happiness.
Copyright © 2009, S. J. Wickham. All Rights Reserved Worldwide.