Happiness Is Living Your Purpose
According to the teachings of Vedanta and Sufism, happiness is being in your dharma – essentially discovering your purpose in life and then living a life of purpose. It’s a two-part equation: first understanding what it is you love to do; and then helping, healing, or serving others using your unique gifts and your special talents.
Before we meditate each day, we ask ourselves three questions, known as the “Soul Questions”: Who am I? What do I want? and What is my dharma? Asking these three profound questions right before we go into the stillness and silence of meditation provides the fertile garden in which the answers can sprout and grow.
These are not easy questions to answer, and Deepak has always advised us to “Ask the questions . . . . and then live the answers.” Meditators from all over the world have found that the more time you spend in stillness and silence, the greater the clarity will unfold in your life as meditation becomes a core part of who you are. It is from the stillness that the unknown unfolds – the new, the fresh, the un-thought of, and the unlimited.
Inviting in the Answers
As clarity unfolds in your life and you realize that you ARE that stillness and silence, then the impossible becomes the approachable, the unthinkable becomes the do-able, and the unimaginable becomes the obvious.
So what do you love to do? What are your unique gifts and your special talents? This is easier to answer than you think. What is it that when you are doing it, time stands still? What is that when you are doing it, an hour feels like a few moments? What is it that brings you joy and fulfillment?
By asking these questions right before meditating, you plant a subtle seed, and each soul question plays in the background throughout your day – even while you sleep. And over time the answers start presenting themselves as you find yourself doing something and thinking to yourself, I love this . . . I am really happy doing this. It’s not an intellectual exercise. This is a consciousness-based approach to moving toward happiness.
The third question, How can I serve?, unfolds naturally once you have discovered what it is you love to do. You may find yourselves doing this activity in the evenings, on weekends, in your day to day. And at a certain point you start to realize who you are. Self-understanding. Self-realization. Knowledge of the Self. It is this depth of comprehension – this type of contemplation – that converts learning into wisdom.
If we discover ourselves, but not how to serve others with that gift, happiness will elude us.
If we dedicate ourselves to service, but not to doing what we love, then “knowing” who we are eludes us and there is no self-realization.
At Chopra Center University, one of our goals is to help people discover themselves AND apply that knowledge to a life of helping, healing, and serving others. This doesn’t happen by reading a few books or hearing a few lectures. The key to this understanding is having a daily practice where you ask profound questions and rather than look for answers, you let them go, and go within.
Our 1,500 certified instructors and the 350 sweet explorers currently on the Teachers Path are living the answers each day. They understand that happiness is not a target . . . it effortlessly unfolds by you sitting down a couple of times a day and tapping into the stillness and silence that rests within, so you can ask the questions . . . and live the answers.