Though one could be infinitely happy by just enjoying the nature and family and all the human-made things, there are still millions of people who are unhappy. In the developed countries there is very fortunate circumstance of having both God-given and man-made things. Still majority of people there are unhappy. In the developing countries, where for millions there is a real scarcity of even basic needs, people seem to be happy. There are some people who are engaged in difficult tasks and in warfare, and even incarcerated in prisons, and are still happy!
You would realize that the mere availability and abundance of God-given and human-made things is not enough. There is something else which should be right to be happy. Of course, it is our mind that must have right attitude towards and capacity to be happy.
Milton in Paradise Lost says,
‘The mind is its own place, and in itself
Can make a Heaven of Hell, a Hell of Heaven.’
One can give various examples of how mind can influence our body::
• Pavlov’s dog starts salivating at the sound of the bell without any food in sight.
• If we are tense we often get headache, backache, and spondylitis, etc.
• Heart attacks are directly linked to worry and tension.
• Right mental attitude helps in curing many bodily maladies.
• By self-talk, motivation, and positive attitude we can become happy and successful.
• Through hypnosis one can have command over another person’s mind and body.
• Through meditation one can have a healthy body and extra sensory abilities.
Mind has extra-ordinary powers and as far as happiness is concerned it has the ultimate power. We should, therefore, have a positive attitude towards life. Instead of concentrating on bad things in life and people, we should concentrate on redeeming features in them. We should not keep on thinking about past failures and bad experiences but be encouraged by our past success and good experiences. Similarly, we should not be unduly anxious about future as our anxiety is not going to have a positive effect, but we should plan and work hard for the future.
In whatever circumstances you are, you can never have total lack of God-given and man-made happiness. You cannot completely take away nature from somebody; you cannot take away all man-made things from somebody. Even if everything is taken, one’s family and friends are there. One’s precious body is there. And, even if you chain somebody securely in a dungeon, one’s mind is free. One is free to be happy in one’s mind! Mind is difficult to be mastered by oneself, but it is impossible to be vanquished by anybody, any authority, or whatever conditions or situations.
Abraham Lincoln has beautifully expressed it: “Most folks are about as happy as they make up their minds to be.”