There is only one thing that every living being desires: happiness. There is variation and variety everywhere in the world. There are 8.4 million forms that a soul could enter and they are all unique. Some of these reside in water, some in the air and some on the earth. All living beings are born from one of four ways. Some are born from a womb, some from eggs, some from moisture and some from the earth. If we take humans, out of 7 billion people on the Earth, not even two have the same features or fingerprints. What variation there is in this world!
Regardless of this, all embodied beings desire only one thing: happiness. Why? Have we never experienced happiness? We have indeed. We experienced this from our mother, father, husband, wife and other relations. We experienced this from sense objects. We saw from our eyes and felt happy. We heard with our ears and felt happy. We ate something and felt happy. Daily we are experiencing happiness. This is a fact. No one can deny this. But this happiness has two defects. First, it is limited. There is always a greater happiness beyond your current experience of happiness. When you become aware of the greater happiness your current happiness ends.
A poor person gets a motorcycle and while riding he feels happy. He sees a car approaching and when its tire hits a puddle of water it throws mud all over him. He thinks, “What is the use of this motorcycle! Now, if I had a car . . .” The joy of owning a motorcycle has come to an end. This happens in every area of happiness. When you see a form of happiness you consider better than your own, your current happiness ends. A person studies hard at university for four years to earn a degree to get a good job, and finally he finds one. His boss scolds him harshly on the very first day of work. He thinks, “What is this? Is this what I studied for?” His happiness comes to an end. He thinks, “One day I will take over his position.” Even if he does do this, he will still have another boss above him. Thus, what we actually desire is unlimited happiness, a happiness beyond which there is no greater happiness.
Secondly, the happiness we desire should always remain. Worldly happiness steadily decreases and comes to an end. A mother’s son has disappeared. She is in a state of great distress. All night long her anxiety causes her to wake up every hour. Her son was found and returned to her. She embraces her child with great joy. She hugs him a second time, but now her happiness was reduced. A third hug produced less happiness and by the fourth hug she says, “Go outside and play.” Why does this happiness reduce? We receive happiness from our other loved ones which also reduces the same way until we say, “How did I get such a mother? Does anyone have such a father as mine? I have wasted my life on this kind of spouse!” and so on. The very thing that was once a source of happiness becomes a source of sorrow.
What we actually desire is a happiness which is unlimited and remains forever. But what is the cause of this desire? There must be a few who desire unhappiness. Absolutely not! Every living being, from an ant to the creator Brahma, all desire happiness. But why is this? Because each and every living being is a part of God, who is the form of unlimited happiness.
To be continued . . .
An English translation of a discourse delivered in Hindi by:
Jagadguru Shri Kripalu Ji Maharaj
15 November 2009
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