A few minutes later, I reappeared dressed and ready for my morning cup of tea. Dharma had set the table with two cereal bowls and the tea was nearly ready. Dharma, why are you so full of energy this morning, if I may ask?" "Irwin, today is a very special day, a day I didn't want to let just slip away from me. You see, Son, in the human world today is Happiness Happens Day. I don't "get" a lot of what your human friends do, but this is one celebration I can put my stamp of approval on! It will serve as the basis for our lesson this week. A frog's happiness is like a butterfly, Little One. The more he chases after it, the more it will elude him. But if he turns his attention to other things, it will come and sit on his shoulder."
I wasn't sure I completely understood his message, but I do like butterflies so I asked him to tell me more. What he said wasn't exactly shocking, or some big, deep spiritual revelation, it was simply that happiness is always right there in front of us. It isn't elusive at all. Happiness comes from knowing that the small things in life are what make us joy. Little things aren't really so little, Dharma reminded me. Celebrate your small everyday victories. Take please in your healthy meal, no matter how simple it might be. Find joy in looking at a bug or examining the petals on a flower. Finding our childlike sense of wonder and awe at the simple miracle in our lives can make life seem so much more satisfying. When we stop searching for those BIG impressive moments and live our daily lives, being open to the small daily pleasurable experiences we have, we will soon find that "butterfly" sitting on our shoulder.
I was reminded that doing everything with love not only makes the recipient feel better but ourselves, as well. Happiness does happen...more or less by itself. We need only pay attention to it. Take friendship, for instance. Friendship isn't a big thing, it's a million little things. That same principle can be used to describe pretty much all of life.
Before Dharma left this morning, she gave me a list of a few ways in which humans and frogs can improve their happiness.
1. Thinking supportive thoughts - Anything that has ever been made manifest in this world began with a thought or idea.
2. Cultivating strong relationships - Connecting with others in a meaningful way can transform everything in our lives.
3. Getting clear - have a clear image of what it is you want and how you want to do it.
4. Following your heart - This means following not only your heart, but your dreams, and learning to trust your inner wisdom.
5. Expressing yourself - Being who you are, being your authentic self. We cannot, any of us, be happy if we are trying to be somebody else.
6. Letting go - Learn to let go of all those things that no longer serve your life and your true purpose.
7. Truly caring - This means caring about yourself and others, as well as the world around you. How do you want to show up in the world each day? make the commitment to live as many pleasant moments each day as you can. Let yourself be filled with wonder and awe. Become more grateful for the little things and those little things will become more abundant.
Hey? Is that a butterfly I see sitting on your shoulder?
National Happiness Happens Day is a day we could all benefit from celebrating.
Looking for the joy in our own lives and doing what we can to bring joy to others is one of our worthiest goals.
I invite you back here tomorrow but until then, I need to go for my morning dip. And I wish you all, as always, much happiness and