Saturday, January 12, 2008

Another Meditation

The other night, I was up watching an Oprah rerun (there was really nothing else to watch). During that episode, she featured a story of a homeless man who was given $100,000 from a documentary producer who was conducting a social experiment. Over the next few months, the homeless man spent much of his money on frivolous purchases and indulgences. After only a few months, all of the money was gone and he's now back on the streets. A link to this story can be found here. After watching this story, I found it all to be a very tragic and frustrating and I'm pretty sure that there are many other people out there who feel the same.

But all of this reminds me about how a good portion of the problems that most people face spawn from their internal struggles as opposed to their external situation. I've heard many stories of people who were absolutely miserable and ended up killing themselves even though they had everything--a nice house, tons of money, and a successful family. I've also heard of people who really didn't have much, but were still happy with everything they had in their life.

Most of the time, we associate the idea of happiness with something that's external--if only if I had this or that or if only things were like this, then I'll be happy. Rarely, do we ever stop to consider that happiness is as much (if not more) an internal thing as it is external.

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