KEITH BROWN BLOG: Continual happiness - is there such a thing?

editorial image

Fairness, equality, liberty and continual happiness are a delusion for many.

They have never really existed on a global scale and they never will whilst there is one human being on this planet that believes they have more right to life, money or opportunity than another.

The answers to life that we all are seeking will not be found in any new government or political change; they can only be found at an individual level and they start and end with our self.

As individuals we will only change this world by one mind at a time but if our own mind and direction are out of focus, how can we positively and rightly affect that of another?

Let us look for a second at the possibility of continual happiness: is there such a thing? No, because most people’s happiness is defined by what is around them and that’s the problem.

Happiness can only be realised by understanding what is within and then making a decision for happiness/contentment.

The Apostle Paul said some very wise things born out of the many problems in his own life; he said this about happiness: “I know how to live in poverty or prosperity. No matter what the situation, I’ve learned the secret of how to live and be content when I’m full or when I’m hungry, when I have too much or when I have too little.”

How did he manage to do that? He created a mind of contentment no matter what external circumstances were saying to him.

Contentment is a good word to substitute for happiness as we cannot always perhaps be happy but we can always choose to be content.

To develop contentment in the longer term we must do our utmost to ensure that it cannot be shaken by anything that comes from outside ourselves.

The reason for that is because anything which is external to us, i.e. a job, relationship or wealth, etc., ultimately we really have very little control over.

We cannot force another to stay in relationship with us should they wish to leave, we cannot force our employer to continue to provide a job and we cannot guarantee that our money will always be worth what it is today.

Recent activities in Greece show us that all things are but temporary. We are but temporary custodians of personal items in an eternal world.

If our happiness or contentment continues to be dictated by those things external to ourselves it is a precarious state of mind at best, because we have given the power and direction of our lives over to others, and they will then dictate our state or levels of happiness by their actions.

Some might conclude that true happiness and contentment is impossible to them as their personal circumstances already negate any possibility of that.

To those I would say this: “the most precious thing you will ever own is your life”. I realised that when I was once told I had probably less than eight hours to live.

The most powerful life-changing weapon we can use in winning the battle to live a happy and contented life is “freedom of choice” and no one can take that from us.

What will you do with your freedom of choice today?

l Let us know what you think to Keith’s column. Get in touch on email at newsdesk@chad.co.uk, tweet us @chadnews or message us on Facebook at Facebook.com/mansfieldchad.