Happiness Without Pursuit
During a conversation with Sadhguru, actress Juhi Chawla wonders what one should do to become loving in any situation, no matter how unpleasant. Sadhguru explains, keeping the mind pleasant or nasty is a choice belonging to each individual.
Juhi Chawla: Sadhguruji, you said something about health. And you said, you do certain things for yourself, certain things, one - you’re given health and then how you maintain it is you eat well, you exercise and you remain healthy. Now, to be loving when maybe in a household, any situation, maybe outside, like you said, outside forces are not pleasant – it doesn’t come easily to then just be loving. So, what should you do to…? I mean what is the practice to become that way or to train yourself to be that way?
Sadhguru: I… I want to remove this idea from your mind. You believe you need to practice. Practice means you’re trying to perfet… perfect an action, isn’t it?
Juhi Chawla: To be loving at all times…
Sadhguru: Yes, yes that’s not an act.
Juhi Chawla: No, not an act, but to be so accepting…
Sadhguru: No, I don’t want to… I don’t want to go back to the movies, okay? (Juhi Laughs)
Juhi Chawla: No, to be so accepting because…
Sadhguru: No, it’s not about accepting. Right now, do you want to keep your mind… your thought process pleasant or nasty? Tell me, what is your choice?
Juhi Chawla: Ideally pleasant.
Sadhguru: Just tell me, pleasant or nasty? You’re thinking about it, this is…
Juhi Chawla: No, I am trying to think should I fox you and say nasty (Laughter).
Sadhguru: (Laughs) Say it.
Juhi Chawla: (Laughs) Okay, nasty.
Sadhguru: I’m going to bless you now (Laughter).
Juhi Chawla: No, no, no. Okay I take back my words (Applause). Okay. All right, so…
Sadhguru: Any human being’s choice for themselves is definitely pleasantness, isn't it?
Juhi Chawla: Yes.
Sadhguru: Body, mind, emotion, everything and surroundings – you want it pleasant.
Juhi Chawla: Yes.
Sadhguru: So why is it not pleasant? Surroundings are not pleasant because of many things…
Juhi Chawla: Yes.
Sadhguru: Surroundings – not entirely me, it’s so many forces. We have to manage them, we have to juggle them, not always are we successful with everything around us. You know different people have different levels of competence to manage the outside. Not all of us have the same… what to say, the skill to manage the outside. But inside, your emotion and your thought, why is it not happening your way? This is something we have to look at. This has to be addressed, every human being has to address this. At least your thought and your emotion must happen the way you want it.
It’s like this – on a certain day, a lady went to sleep. A lady went to sleep; in her sleep – she had a dream. I think up there (Gestures) - oh there are two strata of people, nobody is asleep right (Laughter)? So that I could pick on you, I’m just looking if I can see. She went to sleep, up there (Gestures) and in her dream… She had a dream, in her dream she saw a hunk of a man standing in that corner. And then he started coming closer and closer and closer. He came so close she could even feel his breath. She trembled, not in fear and then she asked, “What will you do to me?” The man said, “Well lady, it’s your dream (Laughter).”
Juhi Chawla: Okay.
Sadhguru: I’m saying what’s happening in your mind is your bloody dream. Now the problem with life is – n… not that life is not happening the way you want it, even your dream is not happening the way you want it, that’s the problem (Laughter). I’m saying at least fix this, at least let the dream happen the way you want it. If you were dreaming the way you want right now, your thought and your emotion would be pleasant, isn’t it?
Juhi Chawla: Yes, but it… Well…
Sadhguru: Fixing the world is another thing, that’s a different game. That needs lot of skill, this needs just willingness.
Juhi Chawla: Yes. Is this what you call awareness?
Juhi Chawla: Or conscious… being conscious of…
Sadhguru: Only if you are reasonably pleasant within you, there is a possibility of you becoming aware. When you’re in different levels of unpleasantness, there is no chance of ever you becoming aware. There’s no such thing. Tell me, is it possible? When you’re in a unpleasant state of thought or emotion, can you become aware? Is there such a thing? There is no such thing. Why we’re continuously talking about joy, blissfulness, love, is not because it’s a goal by itself, these are not goals by itself -only by… when you are pleasant by your own nature, you stop being in pursuit of happiness. You are fine by yourself, you don’t have to go anywhere to feel pleasant. You don’t have to do anything to feel pleasant, sitting here you’re feeling very pleasant, now you will look at life the way it is. Otherwise, you’re an endless race, pursuit of your happiness is a lifelong thing. Till your deathbed you’re pursuing, what does it mean? That means you’re a failure. It is written in some nation’s constitution – “Pursuit of happiness.” All your life you’re supposed to pursue happiness, that means you’re a failure, isn’t it? If you’re pursuing happiness when you are five, I can understand, but that was not the fact, when you’re five you were simply happy by your own nature. When you’re fifty, you’re pursuing your happiness - this is a failed story, isn’t it?