Accepting Happiness

(Translated from Hindi)


Who are the heroes of this world? Actors, movie stars, play the parts of heroes. This is their occupation. Their job is not to tell us what is true; they are playing the role of someone else. It is a false situation. We watch them and think we are being entertained.

We want to be happy, yet all those things we really want in life we already have. If we want more, we need to see what we’ve been given. If we want more blessings, we need to count the blessings we already have. We get stuck in thinking, “I should have this; I should have that. It should be like this; it should be like that.” This is what we’ve been taught.

Have you seen how happy a child is? Does he have a bankbook? All he needs is to be with his mother, whether he is sitting in a fancy car or in a simple cart. He doesn’t care.

When we start accepting what we’ve been given, our heart also becomes like that child. In that acceptance we can find real happiness. In each and every breath, so much joy is being given. If we could accept it, there is no limit to the happiness it would bring.

It is all a matter of learning and acceptance. If we really become a student of life, what can’t we learn?


Once there was a young man who had just graduated from university and was walking behind an old man. As he was just starting out in life, he thought maybe the old man could give him a few words of wisdom. The old man was walking weighted down with a big load on his back. The young man went up to him and asked, “Do you have any words of wisdom for me? I’m just starting out.”

The old man stopped, looked at the young man, put the load down, stood up straight, and smiled at him. Then he put the load on his back again, hunched over, and walked away. Not a word was exchanged. I think it was the wisest thing he could have ever told him: The reason you walk like this is not from your load. That’s all borrowed. If you want to stand up straight, then put the load down. What you have been given, what is yours, is not a load. What is yours is truly a delight.

It is simple: The more we enjoy, the more joy we have. And the more we accept that joy, the more we appreciate. Other things in life decrease, but this is one thing that keeps increasing. I have seen this again and again.

Bad things we understand easily. It is not so easy to understand a good thing. That is why someone is needed to help us understand. We understand about battles and bombs, but we don’t understand that we only have one life and we shouldn’t waste it. It should be a very easy thing to understand, but often we don’t. 

There is a war on the outside, and there is a war on the inside. The war on the outside will come to an end sooner or later, but the war on the inside can rage on for a lifetime. Unless that war has been resolved, nothing will make a difference.

— Prem Rawat