I like this pattern I've set up of doing a post regarding meditation and then a post about a novel or poem, so expect more of that in the future. Today is a meditation day!
When people tell me there ultimate goal in life is NOT to find happiness, I find it hard to believe them. I think the main motivators or things people are looking for in life are survival, well-being, and happiness. If someone tells me they want to be in a position of power (cough cough Chris), I think what they mean is they believe power and influence and control will bring them a measure of happiness and satisfaction or otherwise promote their well-being. Same with saying you want a good job, a family, etc.
So here is an excerpt from Matthieu Ricard's book Happiness: A Guide to Developing Life's Most Important Skill.
Is happiness a skill that, once acquired, endures through the ups and downs of life?
...For some people, talking about the search for happiness seems almost in bad taste. Protected by their armor of intellectual complacency, they sneer at it as they would at a sentimental novel.
How did such devaluation come about? Is it a reflection of the artificial happiness offered by the media? Is it a result of the failed efforts we use to find genuine happiness? Are we supposed to come to terms with unhappiness rather than make a genuine and intelligent attempt to untangle happiness from suffering?