A few weeks ago, I picked up Micheal Singer’s book, “The Untethered Soul”, which I had read many years ago. I’d forgotten how deep this book is! I have to read a little, walk away and digest it, and then come back to it several days later.
On Friday, I felt the need to re-read chapter 15, “the path of unconditional happiness” and now I feel the need to attempt to share Michael’s wisdom from this chapter, which begins, ‘“The highest spiritual path is life itself. If you know how to live daily life, it all becomes a liberating experience. But first, you have to approach life properly, or it can be very confusing. To begin with, you have to realize that you really only have one choice in this life, and it’s not about your career, whom you want to marry or whether you want to seek God. People burden themselves with so many choices. In the end, you can throw it all away and just make one basic, underlying decision. Do you want to be happy, or do you not want to be happy? It’s really that simple. Once you make that choice, your path through life becomes totally clear.”
It is simple, but not easy! Everyone says, “I want to be happy!” but then we set ourselves up to be unhappy! We place all sorts of conditions on being happy.
You say you’ll be happy when this happens or that happens, or when he/she says this or that. As long as things go your way you’re happy, but any condition you create will limit your happiness. When things happen in life that you don’t want – your partner leaves you, the stock market crashes, your car breaks down in the middle of the night – your heart closes and you feel unhappy very quickly.
Michael Singers says if you were really committed to being happy, you would be happy despite these things!
I think his opening question should really be worded as, “Do you choose to be happy… regardless of the circumstances and your personal preferences? Do you choose to be unconditionally happy?”
I’d like to make that choice… but how? How do you do that? How do you stay happy when things go wrong?
It’s simple. You keep your heart open.
Simple, but NOT easy!
I became SO aware of this on Saturday. There were many little things in my morning that didn’t go my way and by 1:00pm I was cranky. I decided to get out in nature to clear my head and ground myself. As I was walking in the woods, I realized I’d been focusing on all the conditions I’d set… all kinds of thoughts that made me happy. I had spent the morning with my heart closed! I told myself to stop focusing on my thoughts and simply open my heart… and as I did a gentle joy rose up inside. I walked with a smile on my face and life felt good.
The minute I went back to the thoughts, my heart closed again. Wow! It’s so automatic.
It’s very clear that choosing to be unconditionally happy take some effort. This path also requires self-compassion, because it’s a learning process that won’t happen overnight.
It’s a process worth engaging in, since Michael claims that if you decide to be unconditionally happy for the rest of your life, regardless of what happens, you will not only be happy, but you will become enlightened. Unconditional happiness is the highest technique there is. He says, “You don’t have to learn Sanskrit or read any scriptures. You don’t have to renounce the world. You just have to really mean it when you say you choose to be happy. And you have to mean it regardless of what happens. This is truly a spiritual path, and it is as direct and sure a path to Awakening as could possibly exist.”
The key to happiness is simple – consciously choose to turn your attention from your thoughts to opening your heart, no matter what happens. When your heart is open, you are happy. And when you are happy you are closer to enlightenment.
It’s simple! (But not easy!)
P.S. The more often you experience an open heart, the easier it is to recognize when your heart isn’t open… and take action to shift to opening once again. There are many ways to experience opening your heart…
and ONE of those ways is a Shin Dao healing session with Tina. Shin Dao literally translated means, “Heart Way”.
Another way is a heart-opening coaching session with Neil... a chance to discover the beauty of you and your own heart.
Consider giving these sessions a try to experience the peace and calm that comes with an open heart. call for more information at 1-403-285-5266.
awakening choice coaching easy enlightenment happiness happy healing healing sessoins heart Michael Singer Neil Thrussell open personal preferences Shin Dao simple soul The Untetherd Soul Tina Thrussell