Street art in Metaxourghio area, Athens - Photo by Ihtisham Khan

The road to happiness

A human is a precious creature made by God. When a person looks back on their life, they can see two things clearly: happiness and sadness. Happiness and sadness are opposites, but humans and animals feel both.

We can measure happiness and sorrow in many ways. If things go according to their expectations, people feel happy. But if the same things go against their expectations, they feel sad. Let’s look into this and find out more.

I read an interesting article about the happiest person in the world, named Matthieu Ricard. He was born in France and participated in a 12-year brain study on meditation and compassion, which was led by neuroscientist Richard Davidson, from the University of Wisconsin.

Matthieu Ricard taught us five things about happiness:

  1. Selflessness. This means leaving your own private world and mixing with others in society. If someone wants to be a good person, they have to leave their personal affairs behind and look for strength around them.
  2. Compassion. In order to be happy, a human being has to show compassion for other people and animals. If someone has kindness in their heart, they can’t fail to be happy.
  3. Prayer or Yoga. These are both useful and the difference between them is very small and depends on the individual. According to Matthieu Ricard, if you pray or do yoga for 15 minutes every day, you get spiritual peace. . 
  4. Avoidance of anxiety and depression. This means that you have to avoid the things that might make you anxious or depressed, for example, don’t sing sad songs, don’t keep company with bad people.
  5. Being prepared to help others is something that eliminates hatred between humans. It connects people and fills our hearts with understanding. This fifth point is actually what will really bring happiness. 

This article is a message to people to urge them to think beyond any feelings of hopelessness and to try and find hope. It is not normal to be either always happy or always sad. These five encourage us to try and find happiness.

Ihtisham Khan