I have come across some prophetic saying that a good word is charity; a gift of a date is charity; removing injurious objects from the path is charity; even quenching the thirst of a dog is charity. Where I found most of us getting disappointed and hence unhappy is in our expectations. We think and say ceteris paribus, that we should be somewhere, be someone, and have something at some point or age in our lives, forgetting that all things are never equal in most circumstances for most people. We tend to condition results and accomplishments on efforts, exertion and time; whereas so many other variables and circumstances do alter the results of efforts, exertion and the time we invest. The joy or happiness we should experience ideally is the consciousness that we were not found wanting at the moment demanding our efforts nor idle at time of business, that we have tried our utmost best.
Our happiness and pleasure should be in the knowledge that we have acquired some new experience and skill sets regardless of the measure of reward we gain or loss we incur. This value is usually unquantifiable, though not immediately discernible. It is enduring, priceless. In this regard, we must necessarily get our satisfaction and happiness, not from those who vainly constitute themselves as barriers or as conferrers of privileges on base and sentimental grounds and whose expectations enslave their beneficiaries. That is why we must take our search for Happiness beyond Man and the System. This is not easy because we cannot live outside others and our environment. We cannot be saints. We must still be dependent. But our dependence must be on one that liberates us from needing to depend on others for our happiness even when we have to live and work with them.
Therefore, we will not expect so much from them or get disappointed by their inanities or shenanigans. We will be independent. Very hard? This independence is in the depth of our faith in the Most High. It is in the ease of our access to Him directly. It is in our acknowledgment of His Grace in us and gratitude to Him everyday and in all situations. Which of His blessings can we deny? Were we to name them, they are countless. In this consciousness, awareness or remembrance is the extent of our happiness. For in being pleased in Him and He being pleased with us can we experience perfect tranquillity and innermost pleasure and happiness in spite of the visible, pervasive turbulence around us.
Of Man, His Ambition and Happiness
Abdulwarees is Assistant Director, Strategic Planning & Corporate Development at Voice of Nigeria, Ikoyi Lagos