How Do You Find Happiness?
It was very recently that the famous Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur(Kolkata) announced their decision to start a centre for Science of Happiness. The purpose of this new centre is to develop happy technocrats. It offers courses, research, and training that scientifically explore the science of happiness. The authorities promise that the centre will help students in developing an environment of meaningful life, wellbeing, holistic self-development and positive growth. In August 2016, they successfully organized the first international workshop on Science of Happiness
Search for Happiness
The search for happiness is man’s basic instinct and it will give a deeper meaning to his life. Centuries ago, the great Greek philosopher Aristotle declared;‘ Happiness is the meaning and the purpose of life, the whole aim, and end of human existence’. So, it is hoped that everybody, especially experts in education, will appreciate the novel move by the IIT Kharagpur. The University of California, Berkeley, is now conducting an online course on Happiness. Anyhow, it is a good positive change in education that more institutes and educational experts are realizing the importance of happiness in our lives and becoming interested in the search for happiness and well being.
According to the Dalai Lama, the purpose of our lives is to be happy. Researchers have proved that it is when one is happy that he can perform to his maximum potential. You will be more creative and proactive when you are happy. Happiness makes you more prudent and productive in your life. Many psychologists and thinkers are of the opinion that the study of the science of happiness should necessarily be included in our school syllabus because it is essential for a purpose-driven meaningful life and for the ultimate success.
Mind Management: The real Key to Happiness
The great English poet John Milton wrote: ‘The mind is its own place and in itself can make a heaven of hell or hell of heaven’. The mind is like a double-edged sword, It is your mind that can make or mar your life and happiness. The mind is always like a restless monkey. When you fail to manage your mind, you fail to manage yourself and your life.
The ‘ self-talk’ you always have in your mind about yourself and your life, day after day, has a tremendous effect in conditioning and shaping your life and determining your destiny. ‘Very little is needed to make a happy life’, wrote Marcus Aurelius .’It is all within yourself, in your way of thinking’.
All your problems stem from your mind. When your mind is filled with anxieties and anger, envy and jealousy, depression and distress it becomes a devil’s workshop. The latest scientific studies show that one’s thoughts and emotions produce chemicals called neuropeptides in his body. Negative thoughts and emotions produce stress and stress hormones that weaken his immune system. It has been estimated by medical researchers that more than seventy-five percent of one’s thoughts are negative and harmful, working against him, disturbing his well-being and happiness.
Research has also shown that those who exhibit chronic hostility and anger may be undergoing a damaging biochemical change that leads to weakening of his immune system, enhancing the risk of gastric ulcer, heart attacks, hypertension, stroke etc. Pleasant and positive thoughts and emotions can bring about a biochemical transformation in us that is conducive to healing and health. So the mind is one’s greatest friend or foe. It can heal or harm the person.
Buddhism teaches that the mind, not the wallet is the gateway to happiness. Happiness is determined by one’s state of mind, rather than by external things. An individual can be unperturbed by crises and catastrophe or he can be worried and depressed even for silly matters happening around him. The way of thinking makes the difference. One can insulate himself from all external adversities by positive way of thinking and remain calm always. But if he thinks negatively, it can play havoc with his life. It’s one’s thinking that makes him a victor or victim. As the great English poet and dramatist Joseph Addison said; ‘A contented mind is the greatest blessing a man can enjoy in this world.’
Inner Peace and Harmony
As Walt Disney said; ‘Happiness is a state of mind. It’s just according to the way you look at things’. It is only when the mind is pure and peaceful, you are in harmony with your inner self and can be perpetually happy. When you are able to manage your mind successfully, it becomes quiet and calm, free from anxiety and agitation, violence and turbulence, fear and frustration, lust and jealousy, pride and greed, envy and enmity, egoism and selfishness.
When your mind becomes still and silent, pure and passionless, you can see beyond the mind, you can see something divine hidden in you;-your ‘Inner-Self’ and you experience the true and divine peace within, the real happiness. As the Buddha said; ‘If with pure mind you speak or act, then happiness follows you as your shadow that never departs’.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Dr. JOHN MUZHUTHETTU is a Human Resource Consultant, National Trainer and Counselor. Formerly he was the Deputy Chief Engineer, Kerala State Electricity Board and is still working as an external faculty of HRD Programmes of KSEB. He is also a faculty of Department of Management Studies, Mar Augusthinose College, Ramapuram, under M.G.University, Kerala. He is the PG course-cordinator of MHRM.
He is columnist in several Magazines, like ‘Business Deepika’, ‘Creative Business’, ‘Donbosco’ etc. His articles have been published in many magazines and journals. His several speeches have been aired by All India Radio. His interviews on various subjects have been telecasted by Power Vision TV .
He is the author of five best-selling books:
- ‘Stress-Manassasthra- Aathmeeya Pariharangel’. (Current Books, Thrissur) 4th Edition
- Vijayiyude Vyakthithwam (Current Books, Thrissur)
- Jeevitham Santhushtamakan, Nithya Yauvanam Nedan.(css,Thiruvalla)2ndEdition
- Emotional Intelligence-Jeevithavijayathinu (CSS, Thiruvalla)
- Vijayarahsyangal (Current Books, Thrissur)
As a trainer, he has conducted more than thousand seminars and workshops for teachers, parents, students, executives and others, on several subjects like Stress Management, Time Management, Personality Development, Emotional Intelligence and Spiritual intelligence for Excellence, Communicative Skills, Assertiveness, Motivation, Study Skills, Effective Parenting, Counselling Skills etc. He is an external training faculty of Power Engineers Training and Research Centre of KSEB. He is an external faculty of IMG Cochin. He is also the Secretary of Upasana Cultural Centre, Thodupuzha.
- PhD in Psychology
- M.Phil Degree in Psychology
- Masters Degree in Psychology (M.Sc Psy)
- Masters Degree in Human Resource Management (MHRM)
- P.G. Diploma in Guidance and Counselling (PG DGC)
- P.G. Diploma in Yoga (PGDY)
- Degree in Electrical Engineering (B.Sc Engg.)
READ MORE: MANAGING STRESS- A HOLISTIC APPROACH