Saturday, February 23, 2013

Life Secrets #3: Happiness Pursued

Life Secrets Your grandfather Should Have Told You

 #3:  Happiness pursued


Maybe you've heard it before, but the simple truth is this:

 Happiness is NOT something that can be found. Stop Looking.

 Bummer, Right?  Not really.
A bit of a let-down maybe, especially for those few who enjoy the hunt, even if their quarry is a snipe.
If you're one of those "It's not the destination so much as the journey" types, then I apologize for peeing on your Cheerios, but the truth is often uncomfortable.

 Truth of Life #3 is that your ideal life, your true, genuine, and un-shakable happiness is locked within yourself at this moment and you have been trained to ignore it.
...but, by whom?

  The first culprit is your television.
 Since Americans spent an average of 6 hours staring at this brain-draining device daily, and EVERY program that you watch exists for the sole purpose of selling products for it's advertisers, it's a foregone conclusion that those advertisers will make every attempt to convince you that they are selling happiness in a bottle, pill, box or bag.
 ...and it works.

 Marketers are making enough profits from gullible Americans to allow the studios to churn out an endless stream of faked dramas and scripted un-reality to keep the consumer cattle sedated and spending.
  And, just in case you are in that portion of our society who use the commercials for bathroom and kitchen breaks, they have gotten very good at splattering and hiding product placement within the shows themselves.
 Movies, too?
  Yep, even the movies have fallen victim to the lure of extra free cash.
 Every James Bond film for example, has advertisers lined up to place products within the film. From cars to watches and shoes, even champagne...Please, Google the term "subliminal messages".

 They don't love you. They don't know you, and they don't want to.
The only reason they aren't sending 300 pound goons to your livingroom to stuff their product down your throat and take your wallet, is because that's still illegal. For now.

 You know all those billboards that we all complain are blocking the landscapes of this beautiful country? Well, you have one in your living room.
 That's really all it is.
  I'm not suggesting that you throw it out the window, as much as asking that you simply see it for what it is: An advertising vehicle. 
  Maintaining your perspective in this matter is critical.
≈ § ≈

 Your forefathers were wise enough to understand that happiness can not found, which is why they only guaranteed your right to pursue it.
 They knew that only an intelligent few could see that truth, while the majority of citizens would continue to search for it elsewhere.

 This understanding came from a time in our history when people had very little in the way of personal possessions, and many owned nothing more, literally, than the clothes on their backs.
 The then-fledgling US Government was giving away land ("50 acres & a mule!") to anyone brave enough to make it here, and countless poor immigrants* sold everything they owned just to get here.
 *{ Interesting side-note: We are, each and every one, descended from illegal immigrants who came here hoping for a chance at a better life. Those few who actually owned birth records got better value from them as toilet paper. Something to remember when the politicians re-start talking about deporting the families of other hard-working immigrants who simply couldn't wait the 3-7 years of red tape to get here legally.}

 Despite severe poverty and many extreme hardships, or more appropriately because of these factors, these earlier generations learned that true personal happiness is within each of us, just waiting to be discovered.
 Without electricity or any of the basic conveniences that we take for granted, these "first Americans" worked hard and played, sang at church, shared with their neighbors, and found all the happiness they needed to keep going through droughts, harsh Winters, and even deaths from disease.
 How?  That answer is as simple as my point here:
 Ever heard the term "The power of positive thinking"? It's a bit like that.

  These founding Americans learned the hard way that every life, whether long or short, hard or easy, hectic or boring, would only hold as much happiness as each one of us was willing to inject and accept.
  It can be shared, and it should be...but it can't be bought at any price.
 Those who chose to be miserable would remain so, regardless of any changes that came their way...and likewise for those who chose to be happy.
 ≈ § ≈

 Long before the rap videos tried to convince you that you would finally be happy if you had a stack of cash and a banana Hummer* to make the bitches come running, you already had the key to your own happiness in your hands, but the first step to unlocking it was to turn off the TV. 
 *{Interesting side-note: In the Miami of the '70s, the Cuban girls charged an extra $20 for a banana hummer, but I was 18 and it was money well spent.}
≈ § ≈

Have you ever hunted all over the house for your car keys, only to realize that they were in your pocket the whole time?  
Your personal happiness is a lot like that.

 You've had it all along, but were blinded to this fact by the intentional static coming from your television.
 Combined with the expectation of every American to become a consuming machine and maintain the current system of "Spend first, ask questions later", your path to happiness became a maze that was designed to keep you indentured for life.
≈ § ≈

 Break free.  Find your happiness, and hold on tight.
  That hobby that you think about should become a goal with a specific means of getting there. Family is all that many need, and that's the whole point:
  Your happiness is a personal choice.
Become your own leader, and noone's follower...and above all else:

 Believe, and you will be happy.

 JB "Pop" Stran.

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