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Customer Discussions > Self-help forum

Is there a Key to Happiness?

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Showing 776-800 of 1000 posts in this discussion
Posted on Feb 10, 2012 12:24:16 PM PST
John Paul: Thanks for your post and your willingness to discuss happiness. I plan to respond paragraph by paragraph, noting our agreements briefly and explaining, almost as briefly, I hope, my reasons for disagreeing.

Aurelius says nothing specific enough for me (or anyone else, I suspect) to know what to do to apply his advice.

I don't know what Murphy means by "subconscious mind." I do know what he means by "habitual thinking." Fot me that's the massive amount of words I produce and locate somewhere in my head. His advice seems to boil down to think positive, happy thoughts and you'll be happy. That is advice that's been around for years. It may work for some. Until they run into a bit of reality. Then it seems to stop working for almost everybody.

"How can we possibly control what seeps into our brains?" Good question, John Paul. Do you have an answer? Your 3600 thoughts per hour is interesting. Is there some research demonstrating that? I'd appreciate a reference. How did they define a thought, what did they count? Words? Sentences? Paragraphs? English 1 may have told me that each paragraph should contain a complete thought.

Now your list of things to put into practice.

1. Put it all in perspective. I'm unsure what "it" refers to. Each thought I might have? Some vague global idea I have about what's happening in the world? Something a bit larger than each thought but smaller than my vague global idea

And "in perspective." I just said, "OK, Rusty, try to do it!" The "it" I hit on was the view out my front window. Perspective is already there, distant, nearer, in between. I'm sure that's not what you mean by perspective. My guess is you mean some additional thought, an additional set of words. Is my guess correct, John Paul? I'd like to put your advice into practice, John Paul, but I don't know how. How do you put it into practice? I know clear communication is difficult, but let's try.

2. "Take one day at a time." Very old, standard and useless advice. Basic meaning, I think, is not to think about tomorrow. But how do I, you John Paul, or any other individual do that? Are you successful in not thinking about tomorrow? I'm not. I'm looking forward to my date wth Veronica at 9 tomorrow. I anticipate much enjoyment then. That makes me happy now. Futuring very much or very distantly in time is a key to unhappiness. I seldom think about anything past tomorrow, but I do keep a calendar and its entries remind me of things I want to do today, perhaps even tomorrow.

3. "Use self suggestion statements." I assume these would be about how you want yourself to be at some future point. Am I right, John Paul? Is it suggesting to myself that I am different than I am at the moment? That makes no sense. "I yam, what I yam, and that's all I yam." as Popeye used to say in the funny papers. My bet is Popeye, along with me, is much happier not suggesting to ourselves we'll be different in the future.

That's more than enough questions for you, John Paul. We can discuss the rest of your post later. I look forward to your answer and to any questions you might want to ask me.

Now, Wm.: I like the idea that a key to happiness can fit into one paragraph. I'm unsure what you mean by a formula for happiness. When I say there is no formula for happiness, I mean that no abstraction or set of abstractions is helpful to anyone in making themselves happy.

Keys, say short paragraphs using very concrete words as to what to do, I find very helpful.

Words are quite tricky. Many of them have emotional loadings. You say I take a "cynical" position. Very negatively loaded word. I prefer realistic to describe the same thing. I really don't think I'm a bad person when I point out bad or unclear advice that is not useful to me, and, in my opinion to anyone else. Do you think being realistic is a key to happiness, Wm.?

We agree, Wm. Communicating effective means to make one's self happy is a real challenge. I don't know any "secret" means. All of the effective ones have been around for centuries. They may be "secret" in that so many people obviously don't know how to make themselves happy. Do you really think there are secrets to happiness?

We make two happy people, Wm. I run across many in talking with strangers, which is one of my keys to happiness. Of some 1-200 strangers, or perhaps more, I have talked with over the past 7-8 years, my best guess is more than half, up to 70% are below the midpoint of a happiness/unhappiness rating scale. That guess is based on both what they say and as complete an observation of facial expression, posture, gestures, visible tension, etc. What's your best guess?

I like that your book is only 70 pages. Happiness needing "deep reflection"tends to turn me off. I don't think happiness is found in the depths. Finding it is more like noticing what's already right in front of your nose.

I'll look again in the libe for your book, Wm. You're right about my reading, except I do read library books. There are plenty there. I no longer waste my money buying books. I'll look for yours too, John Paul.

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 11, 2012 1:25:51 PM PST
Justin Dew. Is it OK to address you as Justin? Your post was addressed to all readers, not to me. Before I respond to it, are you interested in discussing it? I seem to have a different idea of what a discussion is than many who post here. For me, a discussion involves statement, question, answer and further statement, question, etc. etc. addressed to a specific individual or very small group. Announcements to the world or whoever happens to read it may start a discussion, but refusal to answer questions is a refusal to discuss. It may also be refusal to change one's mind along with an inability to admit being wrong or having made a mistake.

Way back on 1/18/12 I posted here the first of 5 lessons in a happiness workbook I may or may not try to finish. There has been no discussion of it. I would welcome discussion of just the first of those lessons. Is it OK as it stands? Will it convince anyone to try it? Has anyone tried it? With what results? I intend each of those lessons as a key to happiness. I am quite willing to defend them (or change them) as a result of discussion. I would love having someone "shoot them down." Someone doing so can only be useful to me.

Posted on Feb 11, 2012 2:22:45 PM PST
I am encouraged by the sharing of thoughts on this forum. If a person will merely read, with an open mind and heart, the ideas shared, they will be motivated to begin to help themselves. It is Very Important to write down what you believe could be helpful to you. Writing out and rereading often will reinforce, to your subconscious mind, and lead to long term improvement. REMEMBER to avoid Doom And Gloom Prophets, as they have no use in improving people, but rather make a game out of debating. Reread the older posts here and practice the positive advise shared by many. Don't just purchase books, but rather download Kindle to your computer, then download free previews of books that may be of interest. You Can Improve Your Life Forever, but you will have to work at it. BEST NEWS IS: search out, preview, download, practice, eliminate all negativity. Don't let it stick to you. WORKED FOR ME.

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 12, 2012 2:10:11 PM PST
John Paul. Something new. I agree 100% with your post. No arguments at all.

Now to one of my specifics: counting breaths as a way of maintaining happiness and becoming more happy. It has worked magnificently for me and if I can believe many things I have read, for hundreds of thousands of people over many, many years. I'd like to sell someone posting here on giving it a good try. I'd also like to read arguments against it as a key to happiness. One of its great advantages over reading books is it only takes a paragraph to tell someone how to do it. A decent writer can make it understandable well below the 6th grade reading level of U.S. citizens. Most books are written so only those well above the 6th grade level can understand them.

Lesson 1: The first assignment can and for me has been a life long project. For at least a week or longer, count as many of your breaths as you can, all day long. When you notice you've lost count, say at 291, go back and start over at 1. Some daily activities, many fewer than you think, are incompatible with maintaining an accurate breath count. When you come up to one of them, stop counting deliberately and intentionally. Note and perhaps remember the number at which you stopped. When you have finished the incompatible activity, resume counting at 1 or at the number where you deliberately stopped.

Careless me, that's well above the 6th grade level, but I'm sure everyone posting and reading here can understand and do it. The lesson suggests 1 week of practice, as a first week`s lesson in a course. Practicing until you can maintain an accurate count into the thousands during a day would say you can concentrate well enough, keep your attention on something, control your mind well enough to go on to further lessons. Being satisfied with a particular number is dealer's choice. Being able to control your own mind is a very important key to happiness.

Posted on Feb 12, 2012 3:28:56 PM PST
Albert: Very interesting post. I'd like to look into this concept further. Is there a source I can review. I know that breathing excercises work to lower blood pressure, calm stresses, etc. But counting all day seems a little extreme. Maybe you can enlighten us further...

Posted on Feb 13, 2012 12:41:47 PM PST
Thanks for your interest John Paul. An old source is THE THREE PILLARS OF ZEN by Philip Kapleau. It may be hard to find. Amazon lists it at $35!! And libraries may not have it. Breath counting is the first of Kapleau's Zen master Yasutani Roshi's practices in his lectures near the start of the book. Many Buddhist books, as well as many gurus, start students or monks with one of the many different versions of breath counting

All day while living an everyday life and going about one's usual activities is mentioned in one of Evans Wentz's books on Tibetan Buddhism as an introductory practice for new and young monks. He says the older monks insist on an accurate count from waking to going to sleep before they give the newbie the next lesson. Evans Wentz is even older than Kapleau's and perhaps harder to find.

On its being extreme, the person doing it can stop counting deliberately and return to it later. An extreme of that would be counting 5 breaths before rising and calling that it for the day. As much as the individual can fit in is what I mean by all day.

Speaking of "enlightenment," that's what many Buddhist sources set up as a goal. Of course, anyone who is "enlightened" is bound to be happy as well. I don't believe anyone gets finally and permanently enlightened, but I'm a cynical, crabby, very happy old crock...

Let's hope other authors will join us for as rip roaring good old discussion as this site allows...

Posted on Feb 13, 2012 2:10:54 PM PST
Here is something that has worked for me:
Instructions for Using the **Creative Visualization Method
of Relaxation**
1. Choose a very quiet room, preferably your bedroom at sleep
time. Lie down or sit comfortably.
2. Close your eyes. Eliminate all worry and outside thoughts and
concerns of work, school, family.
3. Next, breathe in deeply through your nose while counting
five full seconds. Now breathe out through your nose for five
full seconds. Feel your lungs empty. Repeat this sequence for
five sets.
4 Next, do a body scan. With your eyes still closed, visualize your
body parts going limp one by one. Start with your toes; feel
them go limp. Next, feel your legs; think deeply and feel them
totally relaxed, almost asleep. Don't move on to the next body
part until you feel the heavy weight of each body part. Continue
the breathing method.
5. Next, visualize your back, then your fingers, arms, shoulders,
neck, mouth, eyes, all slowly going limp and totally relaxed.
Feel your scalp; visualize it totally relaxed. Your body now feels
heavier and more relaxed than ever before.
6. Visualize the following series of colors one at a time, not moving
on to the next until you visualize each one: yellow, green, blue,
purple, and red. If you need to, visualize the colors in clothes,
M&Ms, shoes, stop signs, etc.-anything that helps you see the
color. Keep breathing with the same method.
7. Visualize being at the top of a concrete staircase that is very
high, overlooking a beach and ocean, with beautiful blue skies
and white puffs of clouds.
8. Slowly descend the staircase one step at a time. Notice the bluest
sky, whitest clouds, the sand and waves.
9. You are now at the base of the staircase, standing on the sand.
Feel the warmth of the sand, the heat of the sun on your body.
Now you can hear the ocean waves. Visualize the waves slowly
coming to the shore.
10. You are totally relaxed. You are now very receptive to any
suggestions into your subconscious mind. You feel almost
euphoric. Stay awake and think of the following statements one
by one:
* "I feel healthy, I feel happy, I feel terrific!"
* "I will be successful; it's inevitable because my aggressiveness
will lead to opportunities for my success!"
* "Every day and in every way I am getting better and better!"
* "Nothing at all can stop me if I truly believe!"
You will now fall off to a sound sleep, and you will rise in the
morning refreshed and invigorated with tremendous energy to tackle
whatever the world throws at you. Because now you have built up
the mental shields that will defend against all the negativity that we
are normally bombarded with on a daily basis, nothing negative can
possibly penetrate this new optimism, belief, and inspiration.

Posted on Feb 14, 2012 6:06:40 AM PST
What a great question.
I looked it up in youtube and found my faivorite speaker.

Prem Rawat Maharaji - Burt Wolf : Inner Journey

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 14, 2012 2:21:21 PM PST
John Paul and Michal: I hope you join our discussion Michal, but am afraid you may never find your way back to my, John Paul's and your own post. This site's making it difficult rather than easy to view the latest post keeps a lot of people out of the discussion. Having the latest post be the first one a newcomer sees would keep more people on the site and in the discussion.

I liked your detailed description of the 1-10 steps of your bedtime meditation/relaxation/fall asleep procedure, John Paul. I'm sure many people would find it helpful. I may even do it myself tonight. I am poor at visualization, and appreciated the suggestions for visualizing colors. I off and on work on trying to improve my ability to visualize but don't improve much.

I won't try to memorize the series of self-suggestion statements (mantras in eastern terminology). Eastern mantras are much shorter and simpler, usually just 4 or 5 words in Sanskrit. They are thought to have magical properties that are beneficial to the person repeating them. Aloud at high volume is thought to be more effective than just thinking them.

An example is Shin Buddhism in Japan. They go around intoning "Namu Amida Butsu" which means something like "In the name of the holy Buddha." It does work. Reading a web site where people described their practices for living the good life, being happy, etc., to my surprise I viewed the posts of 2 or 3 Shin Buddhists as demonstrating clearly that they were happier than the other 40 or 50 posters.

Many Christians would be much happier I suspect if they continuously chanted to themselves and others, "Bless us Lord Jesus." I do appreciate it when Christians tell me "God bless you" as we say goodbye. But here if they chanted "God bless us" loudly and continuously as they went about their daily tasks, they'd probably be arrested, thought crazy, and locked up for a while. In Japan where Shin is one of the largest sects people hardly notice. It is hard to miss the similarity to counting breaths and the dozens of other very simple breathing practices.

Why mantra works may be part of my next post. One reason may be the belief in its magical properties. Another may be its simplicity---simpler is better? But there are better and unfortunately more complicated reasons why it works. So, next time theory, but now back to the real, brighter and more interesting world of my senses.

Posted on Feb 14, 2012 4:45:00 PM PST
Albert: I think this book will blow your mind: I am rereading it, very slowly.
Look at it on Amazon. Download a free preview on kndle and let me know your take on it. I know of the author and believe the writing to be valid. "Messages from Jesus: A Dialogue of Love: Mary Ann Johnston

Posted on Feb 14, 2012 5:08:49 PM PST
*My Success Affirmations* (OG MANDINO STYLE)
"Today I am born anew. Today is the most important day of my life
because it represents the glorious and first day of my new life.
I now understand that I alone control my destiny, my success or my
failure in this wondrous world of opportunity. Am I now capable, too,
of greatness and fortune like those highly successful individuals I have
learned about? For now I truly understand that I can accomplish anything
I carefully program into my mind. Does not the immigrant cherish fully the
American opportunity, knowing they must succeed and that failure is not
an option in their newfound world? I will adopt a similar burning desire,
and I will excel.
I am born anew. For now I realize that I am the greatest miracle in the
world, unique to anyone ever born. No longer will I count the obstacles and
drawbacks in my life. I now realize that, like the inventor who welcomes
each new failure on the road to victory, so, too, shall I. For now I understand
that each failure only brings me closer to the success I know will be mine.
Never again will I allow self-pity, doubt, or negativity to penetrate my
new power-mind, protected by a new negativity-shield, for now I realize
that 80 percent of all talk and actions around me will be negative. I now
realize that negativity has been around since the caveman, and yet successful
people always prevailed. I, too, shall prevail. I, too, will stand out from the
crowd. I am a king and the world is my new kingdom, for now I realize
that the knowledge I possess is worth more than all the riches of the world.
Today I possess an immense knowledge of how to change my life forever.
It is a true celebration indeed because now I realize that the best is yet to be.
Just like the wind that graces the earth, never will I look back. Never will
I revisit yesterday's problems and heartaches. They are dead. I will always
look forward with a newfound, childlike excitement and energy.
Never again will I allow my life to be likened to a casino game of chance
because I now understand that I alone take full responsibility for my results
along the long road to success, and I vow to apply the principles I have
learned along the way. It is a joy to travel the long road to success. I will savor
every step, enjoying the rough as well as the easy road I encounter.
Today and everyday forward I will welcome each new day as a blessing
from above, and I vow never again to squander such a precious gift, knowing
that the richest king can never buy one more day of life. It is truly a gift from
the Creator and shall never again be wasted.
Enthusiasm, I have learned, is contagious. And I know that if I project
an enthusiastic, positive attitude to all whom I encounter each day, they, too,
will be enthused and will spread it to others. And like all wealth shared with
love, it no doubt will inspire me all the more.
I realize that I have choices in life:
I can feel happy, or I can feel sad.
I can act positive, or I can act in a negative manner.
I can succeed greatly, or I can settle for failure as an end result.
I can love all others I encounter, or carry around baggage of doom and
gloom and aversion.
I choose to be different, to stand out and set an example that others will
admire and want to emulate.
This is my new life. I am like a newborn, pure in heart and mind from
prejudice, hatred, failure, or fear. And like a newborn, full of life and hope,
I now understand that I, too, am unspoiled now in my mind. I now possess
the great knowledge of the ages. For now I know that the mind controls
the body, and the subconscious controls the conscious. As long as I feed the
subconscious mind good, pure, and positive thoughts, the subconscious will
radiate like the rays of the sun, thus renewing, invigorating, and warming
me each day like the powerful rays of the sun. For this little-known secret of
my subconscious is now part of my life, part of my daily routine. And with
each new day that I take a breath of air, I, too, will begin it with positive
self-suggestion statements.
My newfound positive-attitude shield will protect me from the arrows
of negativity that kill off the spirit and drive off so many other people. I am
different; I am new. I will apply the newfound knowledge I possess.
No longer will that negativity seep into my mind. I will not allow
negativity to affect the computer-mind God gave me. I was born to be great.
Greatness is my destiny.
From this day forward I will never again worry, for now I know that 92
percent of all worry is useless, self-defeating, and draining.
Like the seasons that change, I now understand that my emotions, too,
change, and though I may not feel as happy one day, I know that in a day or
two I could possibly be ecstatic. Like the cycles of the world, emotions change,
and now my newfound knowledge is power I will be able to use.
With love in my eyes and heart, I will greet everyone I meet with sincere
kindness. For now I understand that love alone will soften the coldest hearts
of enemies and friends alike. And if I am to help others along the road to
success, I must set an example of pure love and inspiration for all to follow.
My new attitude will be my shield that will protect me from the dreaded
arrows of negativity that kill off the spirit and drive off so many others. I am
now different; I am new; I am driven.
And as someone who loves himself, I now vow to allow only good things
to enter my mind and body, and to eliminate anything harmful from
affecting me. I will ignore the surrounding negativity and indulgences that
can harm this masterpiece-body that I have been born with. I now know
240 An All-Consuming Desire to Succeed
that I am the greatest work of art in the world, a masterpiece that no money
can ever duplicate.
I now vow that each new day will be carefully unwrapped and savored
for the precious gift it represents. And in the end, I will know that I have
made my Creator proud of what I have accomplished, and I will be able to
look back, knowing that I have set a truly inspiring example and have made
a lasting, positive difference in this great world of ours."

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 14, 2012 11:33:06 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Feb 15, 2012 1:36:16 AM PST
danky says:
You have to figure out a logical path for your brain to follow:

in dealing with anger:
making conscious decisions that you believe are right and TRULEY and completely understanding every-single new and old relationship in your life will ensure the absence of ill will every moment. Anger does not arise through understanding. With this any direction you take will be your content direction weather I like it or not. All of a sudden your life is going just the way you want it, And seeing it that way will make it that way.

on human relations:
Information in the form of energy is "dumb" and "weightless" direct it with out quantum boundaries to others through your OWN program of consciousnesses. Cultivate good feelings and live in them, others will follow suit.

food for thought :)

"This might be a truth about me or the world. It might be a story about familiarities or timeless thoughts you can fathom. It might be about a reality to be joyous to, or a reality be joyous to. What might you be?"

Posted on Feb 15, 2012 7:54:13 AM PST
2/15/12: No, John Paul, I won't read Mary Ann's book. I am on such a different path to happiness, it would only interfere. As would the very long affirmation or set of affirmations you posted. My path is very hard for most US citizens to even understand. I do understand the path you are taking. It is a very traditional path in which something called success is beckoning in the future, to be worked toward, and hopefully the working is enjoyable along the way. I read all of both your posts and believe I understand what you're saying very well. Did I? Did you understand my last post? Was I written clearly?

Dinky, your post is poorly written, ungrammatical, hard to understand. A couple good ideas managed to show thru the verbal haze, but barely. Write more carefully and clearly if you want to communicate. I hope your next post will be well written.

Now, to present more theory, to try to communicate my key or path to happiness. Language itself makes it difficult to communicate. Many eastern gurus, in trying to teach their students, give up entirely on verbal communication, and say things like, "the true way cannot be put into words." Then they give koans to solve, or rely almost entirely on non-verbal communication---punching, hugging their students, repeatedly hitting the ground with their fist, etc. Then they write long books to make a batch of money for personal or charitable purposes. I am trying the verbal communication route since it is our best means of communication and the only one I use on the internet.

I posted what follows after Lesson 1 (see above) on another website several days ago:

I feel reluctant to include much theory in a workbook since we do happiness. Theorizing about it contributes little. Yet many people, including me, like and enjoy theory. My theory of how I function and how I create my happiness will regularly follow the rather sparse lessons. Many, but not all, of my theory comes from eastern rather than western psychological theory.

I start with my senses. Vision is the most important sense I use in creating my world. Vision is like attention and awareness in that it can be very narrowly focused or can be widely focused, which could also be called less focused and more open.

Next in importance are my bodily senses, proprioception, my muscle sense, sense of pressure pain, the whole very complex world of how I know my body. I place it second because all the harm and good I do in the world, I do with my body. That includes producing words that others might or might not take in and understand.

Also very important is hearing. It helps orients me in the world, but far less than vision. A lot of my happiness comes through hearing, especially hearing what others try to communicate with me as they talk. I enjoy the sounds of nature, and to some extent, music, but even with hearing aids, my appreciation and enjoyment of sound is much less than I imagine that of younger people could be.

Taste comes next in importance. It contributes a substantial chunk of my enjoyment and happiness.

The last of the conventional five senses contributes least to my orientation, enjoyment, and happiness. The world I create through smell is a pale, weak, unsophisticated, version of that of a master chef. They can make smell differentiations I miss completely.

Last comes the conventional 6th sense of eastern psychology: the mind. I place it last because western psychology, which I took in with my mother's milk, doesn't consider it a sense.

Now to get out of the pale, thin, colorless, smell-less, tasteless world of mind and words and into what I call the real world.

John Paul, and any other readers: Is the above written clearly? Do you have any questions about it?

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 15, 2012 12:25:16 PM PST
I think happiness is based on relationships. Many people get and go to work and are very unhappy with their workplace and the people in their workplace. And most stems from a bad attitude. Job Skills is a book that can help you to increase your happiness at work and at home.Job Skills (Career Success with Self Help and Interpersnal Job Skills)

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 15, 2012 1:02:36 PM PST
Wm Fowler says:
Hi Rusty and all, it is true that slowing down and focusing on your senses can bring about a desirable frame of mind. I encourage this as I do affirmations, because affirmations can help create a desired 'direction' in life. There are lots of great ideas in this forum. My concern is that all of them only scratch the surface...

Rusty, you asked me if being realistic is part of happiness, and I can say with confidence that it is.

My concept of is to apply a strategy to life that brings about happiness as a natural side effect of living. Don't try to 'achieve' happiness, just let it happen...

At your suggestion I have provided a very high level understanding of this strategy in one paragraph. Below is the back cover of my book:


The Formula:

To achieve Self-Actualization, simply understand that....

A) You are an active player in your own future whether you believe it or not
B) Decisions direct behavior and behavior affects Reality

Your decisions directly alter your Future

Have you decided what you REALLY want out of Life?

If you have, then your decisions will be shielded from negative influences while expanding on the opportunities that are presented to you

Your behavior automatically synchronizes with behavior that is consistent with the achievement of what you really want to have HAPPEN...

You become the person that you want to be

Your entire Life reflects the harmony and happiness that you have DECIDED it to be


That's it in a nutshell, but there is much more. My book doesn't try to tell you WHY to change your life for the better, but HOW...

For those who do read new books on the subject:

The Lessons of Icarus and the Pursuit of Happiness

Posted on Feb 15, 2012 1:31:01 PM PST
danky says:
Excuse me gentlemen, when I left the previous comment I seemed to scale the answer, as far as time and thought spent, from the the weight of the conversation that was in the beginning of the thread.
Being 22, and the stage I had no idea so far down the line were such masters of consciousness and grammar. I apologize as a conscious being, it is my duty as a new thinker to be timid with my tongue and thought every moment. On your note Albert, I seem to think the English language as you love it, as being inadequate at describing my individual thoughts and only serves to limit or cap my knowledge and presence. So as you will have worry about my grammar, I will have ceased to worry. Who is content in this situation? I can not help but think of the words of Balthasar Gracian,
"Mix a little mystery with everything, and the very mystery arouses veneration. And when you explain, be not too explicit, just as you do not expose your inmost thoughts in ordinary intercourse. Cautious silence is the holy of holies of worldly wisdom. A resolution declared is never highly thought of; it only leaves room for criticism. And if it happens to fail, you are doubly unfortunate. Besides you imitate the Divine way when you cause men to wonder and watch."

Good day to you all!!!!!

Posted on Feb 15, 2012 1:35:53 PM PST
Great Quote, Danky!!!

Posted on Feb 15, 2012 5:35:53 PM PST
blueskies says:
Money. There was a study that showed a certain amount of money caused a measurable increase in happiness. I know it works for me.

Posted on Feb 15, 2012 7:35:01 PM PST
Happiness comes from having success.
"Success is the
progressive realization
of a worthy ideal." Earl Nightingale
Now think about it...............

Posted on Feb 16, 2012 2:00:54 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Feb 16, 2012 12:37:46 PM PST
Absolutely. I teach the precise, concrete steps necessary to achieve happiness.

Posted on Feb 16, 2012 6:53:20 AM PST
2/16/12---Ah, a batch of posts! Hurrah, but will I have/take the time to respond to them all. Here goes:

Dennis: I agree, relationships and many other things. I'm no longer in the job market. A different set of skills and attitudes makes for happiness after retirement. Some corporations give courses on it to employees about to retire, and there are many books on retirement, as well as many like the one you recommend.

Wm.: Glad to read you again. I'm glad we agree on focusing on the senses and slowing down. Do you agree that we are limited and can only focus, narrow our awareness, pay a fair amount of attention to a limited number of things over any selected time span? We really need to define what we mean by happiness. My guess is our definitions probably vary widely. One I believe is that happiness is a feeling, and that means it is sensory, comes from the 5 senses, and is not intellectual---words are not feelings. Definition is needed on being realistic or reality. For me, the whole of reality comes to us through the senses. There is no other reality. Words, concepts, thoughts are not reality, they are about reality. They can be termed realistic, but that means their description of reality doesn't get you or me in too much trouble. Are your and my definitions close enough, Wm. so we might understand each other when we write happiness, reality, or realistic?

Danky: I seem to have hit a sore spot. We agree 100% on the inadequacy of language, but it is our only tool of communication here. Don't be timid and hold your tongue here. I enjoyed your sarcasm, I have used it in some of my posts. I won't worry about your grammar, but I do make the assumption you post here wanting to communicate. I am willing to try to understand, but I would much rather you would worry a bit about your grammar and not make it quite as difficult for me and other readers to understand what you're trying to say. Neither os us can know who is more content or happy. Even discussing it is pointless. Your quote seems to me that of a quite defensive person, unwilling to reveal himself, probably not from lack of confidence, but from worldly wisdom which is overly concerned (from my viewpoint) about what others might think of him. My view is that self revelation is an excellent key to move toward happiness and intimacy with others. But there are many keys, what works for me might not be useful to you.

John Paul, our opinions of Danky's quote differ considerably. We go at happiness in very different ways.

Blueskies: A study, perhaps the same one you mention, showed that once there is money to live very slightly above the subsistence level, increasing amounts of money available do little to increase happiness. Another, of lottery winners, said they are happier for up to 6 months and then go back to their usual level of happiness.

Achim: Would you let us know your definition of the word happiness? I'm getting tired of words and thinking. Soon I hope to retreat to the world of my senses and vastly reduced thought and thinking.

Eric: Another happiness teacher. Do you make your living that way? Posts here (lessons on happiness) cost nothing.

Whew! Finished responding to all the new posts! And it took only about an hour. Now on to sensory stuff that contributes much more to my happiness than this writing and thinking. I will try to stay out of my writer's head for the rest of the day, 14 hours more or less...

Posted on Feb 16, 2012 7:15:56 AM PST
"The happiness of your life depends upon the quality of your thoughts
... take care that you entertain no notions unsuitable to virtue and
reasonable nature."
-Marcus Aurelius (121-180), Roman emperor
"In his book, Long Time No See, Dr. No-Yong Park
writes, "It is not difficult to find the way to happiness. If you
want to enjoy sunshine, first suffer some rain or snow. If you
want to enjoy a mild spring, first suffer a cold, bleak winter.
If you want to enjoy a good vacation, study and work hard...
and earn it. If you want to enjoy a hearty meal, first work
hard and burn up your energy and grow hungry...."
On the subject of happiness, Dr. Park writes, "Here's a
statement of what a Korean boy thought happiness meant
to him. It appeared in one of Abigail Van Buren's columns.
`Happiness is no longer having to roam the streets of Seoul,
begging for food, sleeping in doorways and under bridges
or being cold, hungry or dirty. Happiness is having an
American believe in me enough to take me in, give me
my first real meal in years, buy my first pair of socks, and
leather shoes, and underwear, and give me a bed where I
could sleep between sheets, let me see my first TV and give
me the first security I have ever known. Happiness means
being adopted and coming to the United States. Happiness
is the opportunity to attend school again for the first time
in three years. Happiness is becoming an American citizen
and making my new parents proud of me.'" C- J. Carinci 2005

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 16, 2012 7:25:45 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Feb 16, 2012 12:37:12 PM PST
Albert: I research and write for a living. You can read 75% of my book for nothing too, at that website, friend. :-)

Posted on Feb 16, 2012 9:54:28 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Feb 16, 2012 10:05:09 AM PST
danky says:
I embraced the quote as a reminder, not to uncontrollably spew everything I think is right when I get a chance, because even if it is right, saying it aloud in the wrong time and place can cause negative attitudes or emotions, as I have experienced. I want to protect my being from emanating negativity, by "boasting" knowledge. Here is a good place for that considering it's a discussion forum, but in the real world where people haven't helped then selves, no one want ls to hear about self help from a kid even if it does happen to work for me. good view about wordly wisdom, I understand it's defensive and timid at times but, it's about living your life ever so delicatly, playing the strings of the relationships around you to make a beautiful song :)

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 16, 2012 10:07:17 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Feb 16, 2012 12:36:59 PM PST
danky: You may be a kid, but we adults all too often forget the purity of insight that children have to offer! Don't be discouraged - everyone deserves a voice!
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