Here are some simple concepts to go towards a pursuit of happiness. These concepts take into account both modern research and ancient writings.
Getting enough sleep regulates the mood
A sleep study of 7 years (Watson 2000-2007) shows that whatever our misfortunes, restful sleep “resets” us in the morning.
Basically, if we live a balanced and conscious life, negative moods and concerns are digested during the night and we have a new and neutral field of action after a good night’s sleep.
It is relatively rare in industrialized societies to meet people who get enough sleep. This comes from the fact that sleep is of poor quality.
It takes several criteria for a good sleep:
- you must go to bed relaxed and not go to bed to relax
- you must have finished digesting
- you must have a bed that requires no effort to relax
- you must get enough sleep according to your needs
Exchange, share and have fun
True self-knowledge requires to work on interpersonal abilities and our relationship with others. It is therefore important to look at the way we act with each other.
Light sharing and openness to others allows honest self-understanding through action.
Being surrounded by the right people, sharing with selected friends is important.
All human groups that live the oldest and best know this need. Groups that share and trade within shared values have more stable emotions and stronger health.
We have already talked about this in the text about “Taoist Immortality.”
Moving one’s ass stabilises the mind
Numerous studies over 60 years show us the relationship between physical activity and depression, generalized anxiety and other forms of imbalanced mood.
The more the physical practice is conscious, the more it is beneficial.
In addition, it should not be violent or too tiring. If the heart goes too high or if the body is pushed too far, the mind is overwhelmed by endorphins and adrenaline that will develop an addiction that is contrary to happiness…
Daily practice must be conscious and soft.
That is to say, Wai Gong, Nei Gong, Qi gong…
Chapter 3 tells us: “Strengthening the bones”, referring to the four qualities of the sage (a human that is happy and in his right place between heaven and earth).
“Strengthening the bones” is a term for the practice of “qigong” that forms the body from the outside to the inside.
The balance of the work of the body and the mind regulates the yin / yang relationship: the force of the yin (body) roots the a more stable spirit (yang).
Feeding the body to kindle the yang
In the case the Yang, the lighthness, is missing from the system, everything is heavier.
We talk in Taoism and Chinese medicine of the “dampness” that douses the yang. The body is heavy and the mind foggy, we complain, we are lazy and emotions are out of control.
The food must be regulated when we are in this case, or when you are in an excess of dampness that will eventually douse the yang.
It is difficult here to go in detail what to eat or not, this is an important topic.
Sugar, wheat flour, fat are examples of dampness.
In our tradition, we have a system that strengthens the yang. This diet allows to reset one’s body.
Money does not buy happiness … but the lack thereof brings worries …
In the Daodejing, it is repeatedly stressed that possessing too much, chasing goods too much, only brings worries.
Chapter 12 tells us to prefer that comes from the “gut” rather than from the “eyes” and what is “rare” makes creates envy in thieves … But one’s possessions can also be the source of resentment and jealousy .
Chapter 53 is even clearer: having too much ‘outside’ is of no use. It is a chapter that tells us about the too much, about the displacement of values that need to be more internal than external. Possessing needs are rooted in an internal imbalance that can not be relieved by external acquisition.
Serious studies (National Opinion Research Center 2005) gives us a current answer on the ratio money/happiness: from 1957 to 2005, regardless of resources and assets, the percentage of happy people remains almost the same.
More surveys from 2000 to 2007 gives a relationship between income and happiness (D. And 0, NYC) which shows the same percentage of happy people in all social classes (not taking into account people in survival situations).
Wealth is comparable to health in that its absence is a source of unhappiness, but its presence is often imperceptible to the individual.
A daily awareness of what we have in relation to our real needs, can enable us to realize that there is no need to whine…
Master one’s schedule, control the pace of life
Chapter 37: “In the Tao, the non action (non resistance) enables us to regulate everything”
The realization of what must be done requires us to go more in the movement of the world than to bustle constantly. In a fluidity that comes from an understanding of the changes, it is possible to do 10,000 times more than in an endless struggle.
As we do not see clearly, the actions we undertake are closer to that of Sisyphus than Lazzi.
The feeling of mastery of one’s time is a source of joy or tension (or even depression) in all. Daily struggle to do too much or the disappointment of not being able to do more is a real source of tension. This tension can not be resolved, it is a manifestation of an unbalanced perception of oneself in action. It is only possible to rebalance the work/rest ratio. In this equilibrium, we can understand without being agitated and finally live.
Misunderstanding of the passing of time, in a future projection and a past melancholy, only creates disappointment.
A shengong practice gives us a perception of the moment. This presence is the possible entry into a successful and balanced activity.
Assuming the form to accept the substance
It is now known that if we position ourselves as sad and unfortunate, the production of chemicals in the brain go in this direction. Anger, for example, produces very specific molecules that are produced when you feel really angry or if we are pretend to, in a constant whining…
The good thing is that it works in both directions: production due to joy and happiness also occur (in smaller doses, but still) when we smile, even if it is slightly “forced”.
The most important is not the benefit of the smile, but that during that smile I can’t whine and I can not get carried away in my emotional nonsense.
Chapter 54 tells us “when it is cultivated and practiced, the manifestation will be pure and true”.
Accepting to be happy enables us to be.
Living the spiritual concretely
Rising above the archaic, magical and mythical stages, humans can live a spiritual relationship that is simple.
Research alone is not sufficient, but it can be a source of initiative towards a personal practice .
The shengong, initially a practice of the understanding of the workings of the mind, introduces us to the infinite possibilities, to the spiritual through direct experience.
Looking at the broadness of the mind and through accepting his death, the practitioner develops the spiritual in everyday life.
Introspection and consciousness of the moment enables us to feel like a part of something that floats smoothly in accordance with the changing world.
It is the practice in life, accepting the mundane in the search for infinity.
Happiness is internal, it may be found only through a practice on knowing oneself and the world.
These tips are one way to achieve an accurate perception of one’s self, which allows a direct experience of Joy by the actuation of education.