Sustainable Happiness In The Changing World
We live in a world where everything seems to have a benchmark or a parameter that must be met. Comparison between products has become a common place and a way to tell which one is better. Advertising and marketing agencies thrive on this. As human beings, we use this system of measurement in every aspect of life and that seems to be how we are measuring happiness. I want to be like “that person” and then I will be happy. I want to have a car or a house like “Mr.X” and then I will be happy. When I grow-up this is “how” I want to live my life. These imaginations of our future becomes the benchmark.
Is this how we want to measure happiness? Is this what happiness is? If it is, then why is it that we still continue to look and search the internet, book store, herb stores, pharmacy and other places to find happiness? So then what is happiness? Take a moment to think about it.
The question is about not being happy, we all seem to be happy temporarily. There have been moments in life that have been happy. But the search to find happiness that is sustainable is still on. We are looking for ways to sustain the happiness for the long haul. After years of searching, we still seem to be nowhere close to finding that sustainable happiness. We either accept status quo as happiness. Or we continue to search.
We don’t find happiness because we are looking at the wrong place. We are looking for happiness in the objects, situations, events and people around us; and forget to look at ourselves, because happiness is within us. When we let go of the events, situations, objects and people, it is only then can we realize the source of happiness is within us. How do we realize this? By simply becoming aware of the breath.
Take a moment, close your eyes and become aware of the breath. Become aware the breath goes in through the nostrils and comes out through the nostrils. If you continue to observe the breath going in and out, you will start noticing that the mind is becoming quieter and number of thoughts reducing. The body and mind responds to the breath and can change from being restless to calm. A calm mind is a happy mind. With a happy mind, happiness becomes sustainable. Breath is the link between the mind and the body; it can be used effectively to calm the mind and its emotions. When the mind is calm and clear, decisions can be made with full awareness, which means no regrets. Choices can be made with clarity with no doubt. There is no breakdown in communication.
For thirty five years, Sri Sri Ravi Shankar founder of the Art of Living Foundation has been teaching breathing techniques and meditation to experience a calm mind= happy mind= sustainable happiness. Sri Sri’s programs and initiatives have touched the lives of over 370 million people in over 150 countries. Sudarshan Kriya™, a pioneering breathing technique introduced by Sri Sri is backed by research and implemented in schools, corporations, prisons, refugee camps and retreat centers around the world. As a spiritual teacher, Sri Sri rekindled traditions of yoga and meditation that have helped millions of people achieve personal and social transformation by relieving stress and discovering inner peace in daily life. Sri Sri’s mission is to show the world that through achieving inner peace, we will be able to see our human interconnectedness and become a One World Family.
The Get Happy campaign will bring Sri Sri Ravi Shankar to the Seattle metro on July 7th and 8th, where Sri Sri Ravi Shankar himself will lead a special session at the Meydenbauer Center in Bellevue, WA. For more information visit www.gethappyseattle.org.
The Get Happy program takes place over two 2-1/2 hour sessions, during which you will be introduced to:
- Special session with Sri Sri Ravi Shankar
- An experience of Sudarshan Kriya® - a powerful breathing technique
- Guided Meditations to reduce stress
- Wisdom to handle your mind and emotion
- Pranayama - Breathing techniques that increase energy and deeply relax the mind and body
- Expert instructors from the Art of Living Foundation (AOLF)
Certified HANDLE® practitioner Peg Simon is celebrating the sixth anniversary of the opening of her Montlake Terrace office, after having worked with children and adults with learning, attention, and behavior challenges using the HANDLE (Holistic Approach to Neurodevelopment and Learning Efficiency) approach for the last 12 years. According to Simon, HANDLE combines an understanding of neuroplasticity and the interplay among mind, body and environment to help the brain gently change itself. As well as evaluating brain processing, the approach looks at anxiety, sensory issues, vulnerability, and nutrition, and how all systems work together. The disorders addressed include ASD, ADHD, sensory integration challenges, dyslexia and other learning disorders. “One of the things that I really love about this work is that working together, the family and I can bring the stress levels down for everyone in the family, so that the genuine strengths and qualities of each person can shine,” Simon says. “We are all so much more than just our output: how we do at school or work, for example. Although we need to be able to succeed at these parts of life, we should always remember to value the qualities and feelings and joyous parts of our lives that make up the whole unique individual that we are. HANDLE can help a person to be able to do the tasks they need to do so much easier, with less stress, so that there’s room in their life for everything else they may want to do and be,” Simon finishes. “And I think that’s huge!
For more information:
Together with members of the public, Stephanie Fernandez of Skagit Guided Adventures celebrated the founding of her business with a ribbon cutting and short guided walk to view wildlife and wildflowers on May 25. The company is a small, owner-operated, eco tour company based in Anacortes. Fernandez will offer small group nature tours and guided day hikes around Skagit County, Mt. Baker and the North Cascades. Nature tours include birdwatching as well as viewing wildflowers and tulips. “I’m inviting people to get outdoors to ‘re-wild’ their spirits by connecting with nature,” Fernandez explains. “Along the way, guests will learn about the natural and cultural history, marine and terrestrial habitats, flora and fauna, and ways of life in Northwest Washington.” Keeping tours small allows for a more intimate connection with nature, Fernandez says. “Our small group sizes offer a more personalized service from your adventure guide, plus flexibility to modify the itinerary to accommodate your particular interests, and minimizes your impact on the environment,” she continues. Pick ups can be arranged in advance for a fee from area bed and breakfasts, Amtrak stations and ferry docks, among other locations. Guests are asked to dress appropriately: comfortable walking shoes or hiking boots if hiking, layers and rain gear for hikes, snacks and a water bottle, and to bring their camera and binoculars.
For more information:
Second Use Building Materials is hosting their second annual Handmade & Homegrown Market on Saturday, April 16 from 10–4 p.m. This free, all ages indoor-outdoor market features the work of over 50 local artists, craftsmen, and plant vendors of all varieties, providing artists an opportunity to sell their work and the public a chance to interact with their community and shop small. There will be a food truck and coffee on site, as well as a storewide sale.
“It’s the perfect opportunity to get your garden growing, snag a one-of-a-kind Mother’s Day gift, or finally make it down to our expansive, treasure-filled store,” says Mary Anne Carter, outreach coordinator for Second Use. “It has been an incredible experience to watch the markets grow, and our SODO store become a hub for community engagement and cultural exchange,” Carter continues. “This event is ideal for a wide range of people – families looking for a free activity in a unique location, shoppers dedicated to supporting local artists, creatives interested in the work of fellow makers, homeowners who have heard about Second Use but have yet to make it down to the store, and more.”
The event is curated by a team to ensure variety, quality, and opportunity for artists. No two markets are the same, so even if attendees have been to previous events, there will be something new to see every time, Carter explains. Second Use diverts waste from the landfill through salvaging reusable materials from homes and commercial spaces slated for remodel or demolition and selling it to the public at our SODO retail outlet. Previous markets have included three Handmade Holiday Markets, the Handmade & Homegrown Spring Market, and the Handmade & Reclaimed Fall Market. Each market has been attended by over one thousand guests and continue to grow.
The Handmade & Homegrown Market takes place at Second Use Building Materials, 3223 6th Ave S, Seattle on Saturday, April 16th from 10–4 p.m. Free. For more information: 206-763-6929 or SecondUse.com.