So many of the world’s problems stem from our inclination to seek happiness outside ourselves. Damaging the planet in our drive to manufacture and buy more stuff to try to make ourselves happy. Violence and wars driven by the idea that “If we just sort them out, or remove them, we will be happy”. Marriages that become battlegrounds because if we could just force our partner to be more like us we’d be so much happier…
There is also a macho about taking action, about “doing something” about our problems, organising things, fixing things, being busy.
Even fixing ourselves is doing something. The self help industry is driven by the feeling that “If I just buy that next book all my problems will be fixed”, “If I buy the latest app and meditate enough the pain will stop”.
It’s so much easier to do this than to face the real unhappiness which, deep down, we all know starts inside ourselves and won’t go away no matter how busy we get.
To quote Blaise Pascal yet again “All of man’s misfortune comes from one thing, which is not knowing how to sit quietly in a room”.
We need to get better at facing that deep unhappiness, not running away from it or blaming it on other people.
We need to be more willing to work out what makes us a grumpy wee shit in the first place before we start sorting the rest of the world out…