Thursday, November 21, 2013

Are you really, truly happy?

When I was in my early 30’s I joined a book club.  One meeting, I made the remark to the girls that it seemed like all the books we had been reading were filled with  angst.  “Where are the happy people and the happy stories?” I wondered. 

I was surprised that my book club friends all looked at me blankly.  “Sue, the world is not about happiness”, they said.  I was shocked.  “Is that true?  Aren’t all of you happy?”  Now, this was a group that included successful career women.  Many had corporate husbands with good paychecks, lovely houses, and small children with nannies to care for them.  On the surface, every one of us looked like the epitome of happiness. 

Not so, however!  As we went around the room, one by one each woman confessed that she did not actually feel happy much of the time.  Rather, they spent most of their lives fighting to navigate their monstrous “to- do” lists, to keep their refrigerators stocked with food, to get ahead and make something of themselves at work, to keep organized households, to provide for their children and their husbands needs. 

Every one of them was secretly bitterly disappointed that their husbands did not love them in the way that they had once hoped they would be cherished and loved, that their bosses and co-workers did not see them as shining saviors for the companies they worked for, that they struggled with feeling unconnected and distant from their closest friends, and were heart-broken to find themselves physically separated from parents and families who often lived significant distances away.

Their lives were a constant state of worry, inadequacy and disappointment.  Each one battled daily with fears of rejection and abandonment.  Each one lived a surface life of success and happiness but underneath resided a deep-seated terror that the gig was about to be up.  Each lived with a terrible and secret fear that their real truth would somehow rise to the surface, and the whole structure they had worked tirelessly to create would shatter to the ground.

The truth is that when the lights go out in the middle of the night and we’re alone with our thoughts, every one of us feels achingly lonely, remorseful and terrified.

What Most of us Feel is Really Guilt.   However our denial of guilt causes us to run out into the world chasing accomplishments, laurels, activities, possessions and all the symbols of happiness. In reality, on the deep level of truth, most of us are simply not happy.  We feel guilty because we are living separately from God.  And clinging to these trappings, activities, and illusions only moves us further and further from living with God.  It’s the pride of self our egos cling to that separates us from knowing our true relationship with God. 

It’s by our own choice that we live in unhappiness.   This is because the “world” is actually structured so that we can be happy.  There is only one thing that we need to do to attain it.  And this one thing is forgiveness. 
In my book, Forgiveness is the Key to Happiness, there are many easy to use processes that will help you to forgive anybody and any event in your life, current or past.   Develop a daily habit of forgiveness and watch your life change from fear to love.
Forgiveness is the Key to Happiness is available at:

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