I would not say I'm happy, but I at least know what makes me happy. I often wonder if the problem with people today, their misery, their anger, even hate, stems from an inability to recognize what brings them joy.
Watch a child play and you realize it's the single item, the concentration, the connection to whatever the task is, that brings them joy. Add a television, background music or even a parent's interruption and they quickly lose interest, move on to the next thing and grow increasingly agitated, even upset. So why do we as adults, lose that ability? Why do we believe that stimulation, multiple stimulation will bring us joy, when we don't even understand what it is we want?
I have two landlords. They have a beautiful home, a large deck, a enormous backyard that more or less faces the north west and brings about some magical sunsets. Not a single time have they sat outside for the few minutes where nature brings on colors and images, no fireworks display could ever come close to. Not once have they gone out early, captured the shadows disappearing, accentuated by the chirping of birds and the feel of the warm morning sun on their backs. This brings them no joy? I can't understand how anyone can't be moved by these moments. A dear friend reminds me, almost daily, "You can't make people think as you do." They have now cluttered this space with a hot tub, new furniture awnings, gazebos, grills, canopies, gazebos and chairs, fire pits and other nonsense. All to distract ones attention and fulfill something nature doesn't do for them. It doesn't make me happy, but it's not my choice.
Yesterday I read Facebook, Twitter and even some friend's blogs and I know, as I do myself, that we spend so much time wrapped up in what we do not like, that when it comes time for happiness, we simply choose what doesn't make us stressed, unhappy or even angry. Rarely, do we do what makes us happy. I do not mean content. I mean happy. I see people putting their pets in cages and I wander for an hour searching for my cat. I feel a moment of stress, but then the sun starts to set. The bird's tune changes and there is fire in the sky. As the colors fade and the night sky appears, I see the bushes rustle and the orange image appears, running frantically towards me and then past. A quick jump and then he wonder, "Why am I not being fed?" We close the door, he eats, curls up next to me and sleeps. Happy. Both of us.