03 Sep

After 2,000 years of practice, Buddhist monks know that one secret to happiness is to put your mind to it.

What is happiness, and how can we achieve it?
Happiness can’t be reduced to a few agreeable sensations. Rather, it is a way of being and of experiencing the world—a profound fulfillment that suffuses every moment and endures despite inevitable setbacks.

The paths we take in search of happiness often lead us to frustration and suffering instead. We try to create outer conditions that we believe will make us happy. But it is the mind itself that translates outer conditions into happiness or suffering. This is why we can be deeply unhappy even though we “have it all”—wealth, power, health, a good family, etc.—and, conversely, we can remain strong and serene in the face of hardship.
Anyone who takes the trouble to stabilize and clarify his or her mind will be able to experience pure consciousness.

Authentic happiness is a way of being and a skill to be cultivated. When we first begin, the mind is vulnerable and untamed, like that of a monkey or a restless child. You need practice to gain inner peace, inner strength, altruistic love, forbearance, and other qualities that lead to authentic happiness.

His Holiness the Dalai Lama often teaches that, although there are limits to how much information one can learn and to our physical performance, compassion can be developed boundlessly.

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