HT Ludhiana Live - - In&around - Col DS Cheema (retd) dscheema@fash­ion­tech­nol­o­gy­

Though ev­ery­one knows that worry and hap­pi­ness arein­versely re­lated, yet there are mil­lions who worry with­out rea­son and de­stroy their health and kill op­por­tu­ni­ties of be­ing happy. Since hap­pi­ness is the goal of ev­ery in­di­vid­ual, ev­ery­one is seek­ing hap­pi­ness in his/ her own way. The best part is that hap­pi­ness is in abun­dance all around and only needs to be re­alised. One wants more pay or higher earn­ing ca­pac­ity, a big­ger house, a big­ger car, good com­pat­i­bil­ity with wife/ hus­band, loy­alty from a close friend, and recog­ni­tion by oth­ers etc, all for be­com­ing happy.

What is hap­pi­ness? Hap­pi­ness is a state of mind, and hence very sub­jec­tive. Some things may make one per­son happy and an­other not so happy or even un­happy. For ex­am­ple, I may be happy with my thou­sands, but an­other per­son may not be happy even with hun­dreds of crores, yet some­one else may con­sider greed of money as the source of all evil and may shun it to­tally.

Some­one who loves sports keeps look­ing for­ward to a cricket or a ten­nis match be­cause that makes him happy; but an­other per­son may not be happy by watch­ing a cricket or ten­nis match but may look for­ward to the re­lease of a movie star­ring his/her favourite ac­tor. French writer Rochefou­cauld gives this def­i­ni­tion of hap­pi­ness: ‘Hap­pi­ness lies in the taste and not in the things, and it is from hav­ing what we de­sire that we are happy, not from hav­ing what oth­ers think de­sir­able.’ It is not pos­si­ble to chase hap­pi­ness and catch hold of it like any tan­gi­ble prod­uct since it is ab­stract, in­tan­gi­ble and can only be ex­pe­ri­enced.

There is a story of a puppy and the old wise dog. A pup was go­ing round and round, try­ing to catch his tail. An old wise dog asked him what he was do­ing, only to get the re­ply from the pup that he had learnt that hap­pi­ness was in the tail of a dog and that he was try­ing to catch his hap­pi­ness. The wise old dog told the pup that he did not have to catch his tail to at­tain hap­pi­ness; if he could just keep go­ing his way, hap­pi­ness would fol­low him.

While ev­ery­one seeks hap­pi­ness, the fact is that not be­ing happy may also lead to more sta­ble and bet­ter man­aged life as hap­pi­ness could well be a source of all mis­eries. The logic is that hap­pi­ness and sad­ness are the two sides of the same coin; one can’t ex­ist with­out the other. So, if hap­pi­ness is there, sor­row is sure to fol­low. Life is such that ev­ery one is bound to have a taste of both. In any case, how would you know what hap­pi­ness is, if you have not ex­pe­ri­enced sor­row. This is ex­plained by David Basili: ‘The per­fect jour­ney is cir­cu­lar – the sor­row of de­par­ture and the joy of re­turn.’ There can­not be a hu­man be­ing who didn’t have his share of hap­pi­ness and sor­row.

It is well-known that we can­not con­trol all the sit­u­a­tions, cir­cum­stances and peo­ple, who cre­ate them. But we can def­i­nitely try and con­trol the kind of im­pact they have on our lives or how they ef­fect us. The bet­ter we are able to con­trol, hap­pier we shall be.

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