If we list some things that affect our happiness, they can sound a little ridiculous.
The angle the chair reclines to, where you sit at the meeting table, the country your bag was made in, a few letters at the sole of your shoes, the number of toilets at home…
Business class or economy, boss or employee, “Made in Italy” or “Made in China”, famous brand or cheap brand, one-bedroom apartment or three-bedroom house.
Just a few hundred years ago, these things were not standards of happiness.
These standards were artificial sources of happiness created by consumerism to promote constant spending, or to create competitiveness to improve productivity.
Artificial happiness is usually relative. No matter how much you own, if you meet someone who owns more, you will feel unhappy.
Happiness itself has become a competition.
On the other hand, we also have these sources of happiness:
The number of friends who you can really connect with, flowers and trees, caring and love from your family, a healthy body, a delicious meal.
Above are natural sources of happiness that are absolute rather than relative. This means that once you achieve them, you do not feel less or more happy when you compare yourself to others.
Natural happiness was likely the standard of happiness hundreds of years ago, and will remain so hundreds of years in the future.
Natural happiness enriches the relationship to your soul.
In modern life, we are often systemically pushed into seeking artificial happiness.
But if you only seek artificial happiness, we will forget the absolute happiness we get from natural happiness, and be put in an ironic situation where we are competing to be happier than others.
What kind of happiness are you living today?
(Image source: Puuung http://www.grafolio.com/puuung1)
(from 1cm+ by Eun Joo Kim)