Sometimes staring at the ceiling can tell you more things than any encyclopedia! As a progeny of the 21st century there are things that I have observed. We laugh at jokes not because they are funny but because they are supposed to be laughed at. We do not listen to others because we care but we do it because friends are supposed to care. We do not like a particular type of music because we relate to it but because we are supposed to like it- it is trendy, it is new, it has beats and that’s enough.
Well Mr. Ceiling asked me “Are people happy because they are or is it because they are supposed to be?” I was as confused as you are right now. How can we even make out if a person is happy or not? If I see someone laughing their intestines out or having tons of jokes to share, does that mean they are happy? Why do great comedians like Robin Williams and Freddie Prinz have to undergo depression and commit suicide? Do we often link having fun to being happy? How often are we really happy?
It is true that we often consider happiness to be a goal but there are no real recipes for it. It does not come with a guarantee card and it definitely is not constant. It’s human tendency, I feel, that we want happiness to be constant and we seek for help through telling jokes, alcohol and celebration. Our desperate attempts to laugh a little more or find ecstasy do not succeed at all times. Jokes are supposed to make you laugh; clowns in the circus and comedians are paid to make you laugh; dancing wildly takes away all worries for some time and alcohol can make you do things which you will not remember next morning. Unfortunately, life is not a big party or a circus where one can escape from their worries.
But there are happy faces and none of their smiles resemble the smiles we give for selfies-
Have you ever seen a mother cook with a slight smile in her face and humming a tune? Do you remember rushing to your father when he came home after work? Do you remember your grandmother knitting while listening to the radio? Have you seen two newlyweds look at each other?
These might be momentary but are true. They come out from what we weave in the fabric of life and the bliss comes from within. Real, non-desperate, content and unpretentious smiles. Don’t we all want that? Let us clear things out-
Happiness v/s Being Funny
You must have heard the quote “The funniest people are sometimes the saddest.” It is true that humour sometimes becomes a mean to escape from our fears, deal with our weaknesses and hide our discomforts. It becomes our defense mechanism to make us feel that we are alright. But how far does it help? I have already talked about Robin Williams who no comedian could tackle but despite of all that he had and could do, he fell prey to his own life.
A big laugh and a big joke are all momentary. Happiness comes with the feeling of contentment and satisfaction. Jokes are a game of wits, puns and irony that feeds the intellect and tickles the vision of it. Happiness makes life worth living. I am not saying that jokes are disposable but what is life if there is never any long-term satisfaction with the people we care and passion that adds more meaning to life? We must move towards making life more meaningful rather than forcibly dipping in adventures where we are supposed to laugh or enjoy.
The ‘more’ is not always the ‘better’
I feel the concept of “The more the better” is too ingrained in the 21st century people. The more money the better, the more friends the better, the more ‘likes’, ‘comments’ the better, the more expensive the better. I remember my class teacher saying- “The more money you have, the higher the wall in your house is.” We always want to satisfy ourselves with more and more of everything and are in grief when we cannot achieve them. Grass is always greener on the other side but miseries are a part of everything.
Happiness does not necessarily come from having so many friends. It may simply come from one friend whom you can call at 3 am after being woken up by a bad dream. We must remember that we are not here to win something every second of our life. It is not an achievement to have this number of friends or this much of marks or money. Life is a journey and not a competition. We must learn to appreciate what we have and learn to accept what is not in our reach.
Accepting the reality
The bitter truth is life will never be free of problems. The key is to be strong but at the same time we must be a part of magical moments of life. We must equip ourselves mentally to not get drowned in all of our tribulations. Betrayal by a friend, failure in a subject, not having a perfect body cannot be the end of the world. Sure, it hurts but does not necessarily have to keep on hurting forever.
It is all about getting up and accepting the reality- life is not perfect. So, we must come in terms with life and accept whatever it gives us. With whom are we to bargain what we want and do not want in life? It becomes much easier to deal with problems when we know we can solve them. Ah! That smile of self-confidence and self reliance! There is bliss when you know small things cannot touch you.
Therefore, let’s not waste time in searching for happiness when it comes on its own. Let us not rush but skip in the garden of simplicity. Let us not pretend but learn to smile at ourselves when we look at the mirror.