What is the difference between contentment and happiness?

It is rather simple:  happiness is a response to circumstances outside myself and contentment is a growing or enduring sense of wellbeing and joy within.

I experience happiness when I receive a call from a friend I haven’t spoken with in years or when one of my children or grandchildren gives me a hug or makes me laugh.

I have been growing in contentment for 45 years.  Contentment is that state of being I find in the very core of my being.  Life can be raging all around me but when I stop for just a moment and turn my awareness within I find peace and tranquility.

Where does it come from?  I believe it simply is; it is my natural state of being. The process of “finding” it is really trusting that it is my true nature, learning to experience it, and living from that inner peace rather than letting life bounce me off the walls.

Your Soul’s Voice

From David Simon, Chopra Center:

 When we spend time in silence, we can hear the voice of our soul whispering it’s secret message and encouraging us to make choices that bring us more happiness, health, love, meaning, and peace.

It Is What It Is

From “Desiderata” by Max Ehrmann:

 As far as possible without surrender, be on good terms with all persons.

There are times when I reach out to another from a place of sensitivity and compassion only to be met with defensiveness and resentment. In the first moments of this response, I am wounded and begin to wonder how I have wounded this person, often a loved one. I know my intention was clear as I sought to share love so did I express myself that poorly?

Then this quote comes to mind and heart. I keep a wall hanging in my home of “Desiderata” because for fifty years its wisdom has taught me, guided me, and soothed my heart and soul. My truth is that my intention was one of love and I know that I can only be who I am in any given moment. The response probably had absolutely nothing to do with me.

So, I take another line from Max Ehrmann:

Go placidly amid the noise and haste, & remember what peace there may be in silence.

I enter into the silence within, remembering that I can only be at peace with another person if they allow it. When that doesn’t happen, I turn into the peace of my Soul and know that it is what it is. I surrender to the moment and choose healing and peace over woundedness. In these moments of silence and surrender, I find the ability, the love for myself, that allows me to “go placidly amid the noise and haste” produced by the turmoil of another’s heart and mind.

Yes, there is some sadness and I embrace that as part of this oh-so-human experience. In the silence even the sadness feels different and soon dissipates. Life is what it is and each person’s path is unique and sacred. I honor my own path and, in surrendering any need to teach, help, or fix, I honor the paths of others.

Be blessed today for you are Divinely, eternally, unconditionally loved. Namaste.

This morning

I am sitting in bed and the rising sun is shining into my window. It illuminates the Chinese Noren covering the window, which softens the light without totally blocking it. Quan YIn sits on the altar beneath this window reminding me to be still. I close my eyes and let my hands rest in my lap. My breath draws me inward and I feel the silent peace of a dawning day.

Turning on my iPad, I open my blog page. The Quick Draft box asks me “What’s On Your Mind?” This morning I quietly laugh and realize my answer is “Absolutely nothing!”

What a sweet day to begin a new day! May yours be blessed with love, peace, joy. Namaste.

Go Within

Yesterday I said that everything I need is within me. So it serves me well to sit down and be still; to grow quiet and listen to the stillness; to come into the sweet oneness of All That Is.

It is a practice, something to do regularly, consistently and – joy of joys – perfection is not required! There are so many tools available to support this going within. Have you found yours? If I can help, contact me.

Go within and discover that everything you need is there. Go within and discover the Oneness of All That Is….discover yourSelf.

I love you.