ESTABLISHING EMPATHY:-

Establishing Empathy: –

One can attempt to increase compassion by trying to empathize with another’s feeling or experience. That empathy is important not only as a means of enhancing compassion, but in dealing with others at any level, if you are having any difficulties, it’s extremely helpful to be able to try to put yourself in the other person’s place and see how you would react to the situation. Even if you have no common experience with the other person or have a very different life style, you can try to do this through imagination. You may need to be slightly creative. This technique involves the capacity to temporarily suspend insisting on your own viewpoint but rather to look from the other person’s perspective, to imagine what would be the situation if you were in his shoes, how you would deal with this. This helps you develop an awareness and respect for another’s feelings, which is an important factor in reducing conflicts and problems with other people.

There are some other factors that can help one deal with others more skillfully. First, it is helpful to understand and appreciate the background of the people you are dealing with. Second, be more open-minded and honest. These are useful qualities when dealing with others.

Basis of relationship: –

When we are dealing with trying to understand relationship problems, the first stage in this process involves deliberately reflecting on the underlying nature and basis of that relationship.

If one is seeking to build a truly satisfying relationship, the best way of bringing this about is to get to know the deeper nature of the person and relate to her or him on that level, instead of merely on the basis of superficial characteristics.

Compassion leads to Happiness:

Compassion can be roughly defined in terms of state of mind that is nonviolent, non-harming and non-aggressive. It is a mental attitude best on the wish for others to be free of their suffering and is associated with a sense of commitment, responsibility, and respect towards others.

For instance, in marriage there is generally a component of emotional attachment. But if there is a component of genuine compassion as well, based on mutual respect as two human beings, the marriage tends to last a long time. In the case of emotional attachment without compassion, the marriage is unstable and tends to end more quickly.

In addition to the beneficial effects on one’s physical health, there is evidence that compassion and caring behavior contribute to good emotional health. Studies have shown that reaching out to help others can induce the feeling of happiness, a calmer mind, and less depression.

SECRET OF HAPPINESS

  1. Positive Mental State leads to Happiness: –

The systematic training of mind – the cultivation of happiness, the genuine inner transformation by deliberately selecting and focusing on positive mental states and challenging negative mental states – is possible because of the very structure and function of the brain. We are born with brains that are geneti- cally hard wired with certain instinctual behavior patterns; we are predisposed mentally, emotionally, and physically to respond to our environment in ways that enable us to survive. These basic sets of instructions are encoded in countless innate nerve cell activation patterns, specific combination of brain cells that fire in response to any given event, experience, or thought. But the wiring in our brains is not static, not irrevocably fixed. Our brains are also adaptable. Neuro- scientists have documented the fact that the brain can design new patterns, new combination of nerve cells and neurotransmitters (chemicals that transmit messages between nerve cells) in response to new input. In fact our brains are malleable, ever changing, reconfiguring their wiring according to new thoughts and experiences. And as a result of learning, the function of individual neurons themselves changes, allowing electrical signals to travel along them more readily. Scientists call the brain’s inherent capacity to change “Plasticity”.

By mobilizing our thoughts and practicing new ways of thinking, we can reshape our nerve cells and change the way our brains work. It is also the basis of the idea that inner transformation begins with learning (new input) and involves the discipline of gradually replacing our “negative conditioning” with “positive conditioning”. Thus the idea of training the mind for happiness becomes a very real possibility.

2. Self Disciplined mind leads to Happiness : –

It is felt that self disciplined mind leads to happiness and an undisciplined mind leads to suffering. The definition of negative or unwholesome behaviors is those behaviors, which lead to suffering, and a wholesome behavior as one that leads to happiness. Traditionally, it has been considered the responsibility of religion to prescribe what behaviors are wholesome and what are not. However in today’s society religion has lost its prestige and influence to some degree. And at the same time, no alternative, such as secular ethics has come up to replace it. So there seems to be less attention paid to the need to lead a wholesome way of life. It is because of this that we need to make some special effort and consciously work towards gaining that kind of knowledge. We must also develop an appreciation and awareness of that fact. And changing how we perceive ourselves, through learning and understanding, can have very real impact on how we interact with others and how we conduct our daily lives. The proper utilization of our intelligence and knowledge is to effect changes from within to develop a good heart.

“Buddha Nature” leads to Happiness: –

“Buddha Nature” refers to an underlying, basic, and most subtle nature of mind. This state of mind present in all human beings is completely untainted by negative emotions or thoughts. Over the past two or three decades, there have been literally hundreds of scientific studies indicating that aggression is not essentially innate and that violent behavior is influenced by a variety of biological, social, situational and environmental factors. It is scientifically incorrect to say that we have an inherited tendency to make war or act violently. That behavior is not genetically programmed in human nature.

Reaching out to help others may be a fundamental to our nature as communication. One could draw an analogy with the development of language, which, like the capacity for compassion and altruism, is one of the magnificent features of the human race. Particular areas of the brain are specially devoted to the potential for language. If we are exposed to the correct environmental conditions, that is, a society that speaks, then those discreet areas of the brain begin to develop and mature and our capacity for language grows. In the same way all humans may be endowed with the ‘seed of compassion’. When exposed to the right conditions at home, in society at large, and later perhaps through our own pointed efforts that “seed” will flourish. With this idea in mind researchers are now seeking to discover the optimal environmental conditions that will allow the seed of caring and compassion to ripen in children. They have identified several factors: having parents who are able to regulate their own emotions, who model caring behavior, who set appropriate limits on the children’s behavior, who communicate that a child is responsible for her or his own behavior, or who use reasoning to help direct the child’s attention to effective or emotional states and the consequences of her or his behavior on others.

We were not born with the purpose of causing trouble, harming others. For our life to be of value, we must develop basic good human qualities – Warmth, Kindness, and Compassion. Then our life becomes meaningful and more peaceful and Happier.

STATE OF MIND IS KEY TO HAPPINESS:

State of mind is key to happiness: –

There are many levels of happiness. In Buddhism, for instance, there is a reference to four factors of fulfillment, or happiness: Wealth, Worldly Satisfaction, Spirituality, and Enlightenment. Together they embrace the totality of an individual’s quest for happiness. In a worldly sense, there are certain key elements that we conventionally acknowledge as contributing to joy and happiness. 1. Good Health is considered to be one of the necessary factors for as happy life. 2. Material facilities (Wealth) are another factor that we regard as a source of happiness. 3. An additional factor is to have friendship or compan- ions. We all recognize that in order to enjoy a fulfilled life, we need a circle of friends with whom we can relate emotionally and trust. In order for individual to be able to fully utilize them towards a goal of enjoying a happy and fulfilled life, your state of mind is the key and it’s crucial.

Without the right mental attitude, without attention to the mental factor, these things have very little impact on our long-term feelings of happiness. If one can maintain a calm, peaceful state of mind, then you can be a very happy person even if you have poor health.

So leaving a side the perspective of spiritual practice, even in worldly terms, in terms of our enjoying a happy day to day existence, the greatest the level of calmness of mind, the greater our peace of mind, the greater our ability to enjoy a happy and joyful life.

Secret of Happiness: –

As long as there is lack of inner discipline that brings calmness of mind, no matter what external facilities or conditions you have, they will never give you the feeling of joy and happiness that you are seeking. On the other hand, if you possess this inner quality, a calmness of mind, a degree of stability within, then even if you lack various external facilities that you would normally consider necessary for happiness, it is still possible to have a happy and joyful life.

PERCEPTION OF HAPPINESS

Perception of Happiness: –

Even if generic make up plays a role in happiness – and the verdict is still out on how large that role is – there is general agreement among psychologists that no matter what level of happiness we are endowed with by nature, there are steps we can take to work with the “mind factor’ to enhance our feelings of happiness. This is because our outlook largely determines our moment-to- moment happiness. In fact whether we are feeling happy or unhappy at any given moment often has very little to do with our absolute conditions but rather it is a function of how we perceive our situation, how satisfied we are with what we have.

What shapes our perception and level of satisfaction?

Our feelings of contentment are strongly influenced by our tendency to compare. When we compare our current situation to our past and find that we are better off, we feel happy. So we see how our feelings of life satisfaction often depends upon whom we compare ourselves to. Constant comparison with those who are smarter, more beautiful or successful than us also tends to breed envy, frustration and unhappiness. But we can use this same principle in a positive way, we can increase our feeling of life satisfaction by comparing ourselves to those who are less fortunate than us and by reflecting on all the things we have.

MODERN MEDICINE AND HEALTHY LIFE:

Modern medicine and Healthy Life: –

The skills of modern medicine are amazing. The miracles of healing performed by modern medicine are astounding. But the time has come when modern medicine must take a step forward. Doctors must find a way of treating the whole human being. Modern medicine takes care only of the body like a machine, which can be repaired when it goes out of order. Man is a composite being built of body, mind and soul. Each one of us is essentially a soul. If the soul is sick, do whatever you do to the body, it will keep on moving from one sickness to another. We need to treat the whole human being.

Doctors should teach the psychology of mind. Always be positive in your out- look upon life and expect the best. Plant beautiful thoughts in your mind. Control your anger, and animal appetites. Many doctors are drawing a correlation between an individual personality and the nature of his disease. Give and forgive and live a healthy life.

  1. The foundation of healthy body is a happy mind. Therefore let nothing agitate you or disturb your inner peace. Keep your upstairs (Brain) clean and your downstairs (Body) will be healthy.
  2. Eat a balanced diet.
  3. Drink sufficient water.
  4. Take plenty of fresh air and sunshine.
  5. Laugh heartily. Laughter is at once a physical, mental and spiritual tonic.
  6. You must have sufficient sleep.
  7. You must have adequate exercise.
  8. You must have proper elimination (via bowels, kidneys, lungs and skin)
  9. Everyday you must spend some time in silence, Pray, Meditate, do your spiritual thinking.
  10. You must adopt a cheerful and positive attitude.

How can we overcome stress?

To overcome stress you need to understand what stress stands for:

  1. S – Smile – keep smiling
  2. T – Tolerance – grow in tolerance
  3. R – Relax – never be tensed
  4. E – Easy – Take it easy but not be lazy
  5. S – Service – keep serving
  6. S – Silence – practice silence and thereby turn to God

Note: – Opposite of “STRESSED”(unhappiness) is “DESSERTS”(happiness)

How can success be measured?

Success must not be measured in terms of money, power, prestige, influence, education, or standing in society. For a man may have all of these and yet his life may be full of misery, unhappiness, moral corruption, and ineffectiveness. Success should be measured by the yardstick of happiness, the ability to be happy and make others happy, the ability to be loved and to love, the ability to remain peaceful harmony with those around you, with your own self and with God’s cosmic laws.

Success has three dimensions. – 1. The first is LENGTH, which is concerned with man’s material needs, his hopes and aspirations, his desires and dreams. – 2. The second dimension is BREADTH, for the truly successful man should go beyond himself and reach outward to others. – 3. The third dimension is HEIGHT; he must go high and tap the hidden source of supply and wisdom, which we call GOD.