How and when did we suddenly become so unhappy?
What’s changed? – For a minor misdemeanour, will you have your hand cut off?
Is a random cough on the train likely to lead you to a hideous death from Tuberculosis?
Will a bad headache be left untended for day after day, or lead to your doctor cutting into a vein, or covering you with leeches to draw blood from you?
Tonight, will you go home, with no food, to a house with no warmth or water – or even worse, will you have no home to go to!?
Life in the West in general or middle-class life anywhere in the world means that we are above the poverty line, and live a pretty good life.
Life expectancy has gone from 45 to 90 over a few hundred years.
We are so geared to look at the negative side of life – the newspapers and TV sell us nothing but bad news. It’s easy for you to believe that life is getting worse, when intrinsically it’s getting much, much better. Sure, you may not like the government, people might seem to be against your colour, creed or sexual persuasion – it’s true that we are hard wired for “Tribe” – anybody who appears to be different from us is always going to find life a little more difficult.
Don’t let yourself forget that even in these areas there have been massive steps forward, from Rosa Parks to Quentin Crisp, huge advances have been made, allowing people to be the people they would like to be.
I think if we view “life” as a work in progress, getting improvements every day, but never quite finished, then we’ll feel better.
The truth is that you are “Hard-wired” to feel a certain way.
The only information you have, is what’s “comes in” via your senses over the period of your life.
Everything you’ve been told by your parents, everything you learned at school, every story that religion told you, every bit of politics that affected your life, every story you were told about your nationality, sexuality and proclivities.. resides somewhere within you. Each experience you’ve had, as a lover, a parent, a student, hell – as a human being! They have all made their marks on your soul!
You are the sum-total of this information.
Almost always, this information is filtered for you through a set of “lenses” – there’s very little novelty in our lives. Generally speaking, for survival’s sake we already have a set of pre-programmed subroutines – shortcuts if you will, that let us process information in a short-hand fashion, rather than have to stop an analyse every situation. So, we build these templates to help us navigate life, they run without our needing to engage them, they just run!
There’s an interesting study that shows that North American white women, flinch and move to the back of a lift whilst clutching their purses, when a black man enters the lift. When interviewed all of the ladies were horrified to see their unconscious reaction and reported that they had been totally unaware of the situation. An example of a deep rooted subconscious reaction.
These reactions are known as “Primers” – advertising is the greatest priming our mind can get. They say you have to see an advert three to five times for you to start reacting to it. Priming – as in putting a little petrol into the carburettor of a car to get it to fire the first time, then afterwards the engine will run along on it’s own. A common primer might be the way you react to your father.
Over the period of your childhood, you might get used to your father straightening himself, and taking in a deep breath before he launches into a critical tirade of whatever you were doing. Like Pavlov’s dogs, you know what that inbreath means, and still in your 50’s every time you see it, you feel like a child about to receive a telling off, about to have your best work torn to bits.. You brace yourself.
It takes nothing thereafter for your father to reduce you, because of the learned pattern that triggers again and again, even though you might be wealthy and successful in your own right. He can still get you!
It’s a bit shocking to see that we are just a collection of other people’s ides and opinions, and so easily controlled by our patterning and our environment. Going home for Christmas – it sets off so many people in the Western World. Going back to the old places, with the old people who’s patterning remains doggedly the same, long after yours has changed! It’s a recipe for disaster!
How did life ever get to be so rubbish!?
Let’s ask a bigger question then, what is this life actually about?!
We’ll the real reason for you being here is as a seed carrier for the next generation (the ungrateful bastards…!)
There’s really nothing more glamourous than that, just the required continuation of the species. Evolution has built in redundancy too, if you don’t marry, don’t make babies, then that’s not the end of it either, we’ll survive without you! (Sorry!)
I often quote Albert Camus, the crazy old fool! He basically says, you only have one real question to ask yourself. “Would I rather be dead?” – no seriously – ask yourself that. (As mentioned before, it really doesn’t matter either way to the rest of us, the human race will manage without you! Sorry!)
Good, so you’ve decided to stay! As aforementioned, we seem to be hardwired to look for injustice.
Somehow, we always seem to be looking for the worst. We need to have a little change of mind. It takes no more effort to think “All of this is CRAP!” than it does to think “All of this is really nice!” – the same amount of energy expended! – Which one do you think will leave you feeling better?
OK, so a little Positive Psychology was all that was needed? Just viewing things a different way is going to change my whole life!? Great!! Maybe, maybe not.
What are the structures that you have built your life on? Family? Religion? Law? Beliefs? Ownership? Relationship? God?
How’s that working out for you?
Dad hates you, Mum won’t talk to you, your sister is jealous of you, and by the way God thinks you are a total sh*t
However, you’ve bought a great new house! That’ll make you feel better!
It’s fortunate that you’ve dieted so well, starved for days to look that good at the beach or the gym, because how you look to other people is really important! “Maybe it’s the car – or another holiday, partner or one million dollars that will make me feel whole…”
Whole – NO! It’s just feels like a ‘hole in my Soul!’ – catchy slogan!
What’s it going to take for you to stop searching “Out there” and find out what it was that hurt your soul in the first place?
It’s my opinion that all chronic illness comes from the lack of attention to our souls.
So, let’s just have a look at this ‘Souls’ story then.
Western Medicine erased the soul from existence with the French philosopher Renee Descartes. His philosophy made our bodies into mechanical devices. The soul was amputated.
We’ve always had the “soul” idea in every culture through out the millennia, but no way to “heal” it. Religion always pretended to be the guardian of it, but then we realised all they wanted to do was “control the soul” (hey what a great marketing slogan for the church!) We have recently seen religion for what it actually is and does, and have fallen out of love with its moneymaking, controlling ways.
(There goes another pedestal of life, first you find that family isn’t as easy as you expected, now religion isn’t helping you be happy either! What next!?)
In short order you discover that all politicians are philanderers, all lawyers are liars by necessity, and policemen can’t always be trusted.
You discover that the house, the money, and the relationship that you were banking on to make you happy, just isn’t doing it.
Let’s take up with the Soul again then.
It’s impossible for you to have missed the “OM” symbol, it’s everywhere, on t-shirt, tattoos and souvenirs the world over. Why is this symbol so ubiquitous? So long lasting? (It comes from the Sanskrit language of ancient India, and has been with us for over three thousand years!)
What it speaks of is the state of mankind. We see three curves, joined together – The represents the states of Sleeping, Dreaming and Waking. Then there’s a line that separates the curved symbol from a single dot. This line represents the veil drawn between Mankind and God (God being represented by the dot.) In other words, Man is asleep, occasionally dreams that there’s more to life, and exceptionally occasionally bothers to wake up and wonder what it’s all about. The challenge is to waken, and then try to peer through the veil and discover the true meaning of God.
But are you ready to take the challenge?
There’s really nothing to say that you have to! Don’t bother yourself if you don’t see the point. Head to your grave with a smug smile on your face, thinking that you did “pretty well”!
OR maybe not.
If you feel unhappy about life, if you feel things are not as they should be, do you need something new in your life, a new relationship, a new house, and new holiday? – That’s not going to fix it I’m sorry to say, we tried that already, and got more hollow!
I read a fascinating book about life after death, there are millions of them, that convinced me that we get as many shots at this as we like, but the better you play the game, the easier it gets. Practice makes perfect!
It convinced me that if we look for the source of our own personal troubles, then we can clear all the rubbish in this life.
Again, If you don’t want to, then don’t bother, but I personally really believe that it’s going to make you happier in this life, and the next!
Find what you need to sooth your soul. I use Qigong, it helps me, and it helps me to help others. Being of service is a really good life step.
It helps you keep your body fit, chose whatever you want, but try not to pick something that comes with another religion or doctrine attached! Let’s keep it simple!
Find something to help your mind, your view of self.. (Psychology won’t do it, it generally just keeps you circling the same plughole!)
Religion may offer you help, but it really just wants to “enrol your soul” – another great marketing slogan!
ONLY YOU can really find out who YOU are!
Self-exploration, through meditation and stillness – Qigong helps here too.
Finally, a Quantum Physics understanding of our Universe really helps too. For the first time in 30 years I really understand and love God. (Hint – I found out that I’m god, but the best information is that you are too!)
Quantum Science describes the Universe, and how you fit into it – at last western science meets and merges with eastern philosophy, the circle finally closes, and I find my purpose and place in life!
I feel sickeningly happy these days, almost all the time. Qigong helps me to control the ups and downs, smooth out the bumps, but there are plenty of other paths to the top of the mountain. Just in case you missed the point, it’s a mountain INSIDE you! Don’t go looking anywhere else. Enough distractions now! Time to follow your real life purpose and start to get happy with it!
“Love, love, love – that is all you need!!”
How and when did we suddenly become so unhappy?