Have you even simply been happy?

I’ve been asking myself this question quite frequently over the past two weeks. Since Ash and I moved into this house – though that correlation does not itself equal causation – I sit back at least once each day and think This is happiness.

It’s not elation, not joy, not exuberance. It’s not gaiety. If anything, it’s somewhere between contentedness and light-heartedness.

Or maybe not between, exactly. Maybe it’s a happiness that’s borne of those two things. And being in love with the air around me.

Because I don’t feel like dancing in the streets. Shouting from the rooftops. Telling the whole world. Instead, I feel like simply sitting here in this feeling. It doesn’t beg to be announced, shared or multiplied. It simply is. And I am in it. Or maybe part of it. Or more probably, both.

Years ago, I looked into what His Holiness the Dalai Lama had to say about happiness. Like many Buddhist precepts, his advice is as simple as it is impossible: To be happy, be happy. Like many Buddhist precepts, it’s taken me years to understand that, to accept it. Though I know I’m nowhere near finished with it, or it with me.

Of late, however, I feel as though I’m living it. There are concrete reasons for it, and likely there are reasons I’m not aware of yet. Though it doesn’t beg to be reasoned, such is my nature. I try simply to live in it, to be in it with my lovely wife, our lovely families and our lovely family of fury quadrupeds.

Put my heart on a scale, fighting balance opposite a feather. Today, the feather will sink.


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