A Word about Happiness
by Dr. Petra Müller-Rupprecht - M.D., specialist for Psychosomatic Medicine
What is happiness? This is not an easy question to answer, as happiness is basically a very individual concept, which is constantly adapting to change throughout the course of life.
A child's idea of happiness varies greatly from the concept that a mature person might have and both images are dependent on the different situations they find themselves in. A sick person craves health, a poor persons seeks wealth, and the elderly desire youth…
We have come to believe that material things or special life situations can make us happy. But can it really be that simple? We experience fairly quickly that the allure of new possessions never last long. Happiness and true contentment arise when we allow everything to be as it is – even those moments we do not find pleasant and simply let go.
Our perception of how certain things should be is mostly in conflict with reality. We have the tendency to identify ourselves with our inner wishes and beliefs. Should these not correspond with reality, we are unhappy, agitated, anxious and fearful. By holding onto those inner wishes and perceptions, we generate pressure and unhappiness.
The key is to accept. Things are as they are otherwise they would be different.
We cannot change our past as it already happened. Accepting reality helps us finding inner freedom and may even open doors to new experiences. Being in nature helps us to come to our inner senses. The sound of a mountain stream or the ocean, the smell of the earth and the flowers, the warm sun, the infinite sky, the laughter of your loved ones: all of this can help us to free our mind and create an inner space that is pure freedom. At that moment everything is exactly as it should be and we are truly happy.
Imagine living in New York. Imagine living in New York as a very successful consultant. Imagine working for world renowned clientele such as the Walt Disney Company or the Sheraton and Le Meridien Hotels, owning restaurants and bringing home a comfortable six figure income. And now imagine throwing it all away in order to start a non-profit organization in a third world country. (...)
On my usual Sunday mornings, I sat down with my ginger tea and looked through a few magazines. They had some nice articles about the economy, art and traveling along with a lot of advertisements. Most of them were ads for luxury brands of elegance and exclusiveness. I sat there wondering if there are any sustainable options and whether luxury could even be sustainable. (...)