Happiness Wisdom from Thich Nhat Hanh

thayThich Nhat Hanh is a Buddhist monk who has written over 100 books related to Buddhism, mindfulness, and happiness. In his book The Art of Power, he talks about what “true power” is: the ability to live happily in the present. The following ideas can be found in his book.

1. Center and ground yourself.

“Only by coming back to ourselves and purifying our minds can we experience true, lasting happiness and the kind of power that can’t be corrupted.”

Tip: try meditating.

2. If you are always focused on the false belief that something in the future will bring you happiness, you will never be truly happy.

“We have a tendency to think of happiness as something we will obtain in the future.”

Tip: think of two present things you are grateful for daily.

3. Happiness must be found within, not from any external thing.

“Those of us who want to experience great happiness, to awaken the mind of great understanding and love, should not base our mind on any external thing…we should not rely on any object to give rise to the mind of enlightenment, the mind of love.”

Tip: try meditating to find happiness within.

4. Keep confidence in your life path.

“Happiness becomes possible when we realize we have a path, when we know where we are going. If you don’t have the impression that you are on the right path, if you don’t know where you are going, you suffer, you feel lost and confused. Happiness is feeling that you are on the right path every moment.”

Tip: work to find your purpose, then live that truth.

5. Love and compassion are the cornerstones of true happiness.

“You practice love, you practice compassion, and you know that practicing love brings happiness. Happiness cannot exist without love. All the great spiritual teachers have told us to love.”

Tip: try random acts of kindness weekly.

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