Laughter, joy and happiness is healthy for you. They say laughter is the best medicine. It can cure illness and extends life. A good laugh boosts the immune system, relieves depression and stress, relaxes all the body’s muscles, is good exercise for the heart and helps prevent heart attacks, it cleanses the lungs, and provides an overall sense of well being.
We don’t need to wait for someone else to bring us happiness – happiness is a choice we can make at any time we want. You can choose to look on the good side of things and take life more lightly, or you can choose to think gloomy and sad. It’s up to you. Life is the movie you see through your own eyes – it’s up to you how you take it.
In Plum Village, we laugh all day long, yet not one of us has a private bank account. There is a belief that unless you have a lot of money, unless you hold a high position in society, you cannot be truly happy. It is hard to let go of that belief until you see the truth that happiness is possible in another way. Seeing that will make the future possible for our children. So I think in Buddhist circles we have to reorganize so that we can show people a way of living happily based on mutual understanding, not materialism. Just a dharma talk isn’t enough, because a dharma talk is just a talk. Only when people see such an unmaterialistic community, when they see such a way of life, will they be convinced.
~Thich Nhat Hanh
Greet everyone you meet with a warm smile.
No matter how busy you are,
don’t rush enounters with co-workers, family and friends.
Speak softly. Listen attentively.
Act as if every conversation you have
is the most important thing on your mind today.
Look your children and your partner in the eyes when they talk to you.
Stroke the cat, caress the dog.
Lavish love on every living being you meet.
See how different you feel at the end of the day. ~ Sarah Ban Breathnach
(from ‘Simple Abundance : A Daybook of Comfort and Joy’) ~
Look to this day, for it is life, the very life of life.
In its brief course lie all the realities and verities of existence.
The bliss of growth, the splendor of action, the glory of power.
And yesterday is but a dream, and tomorrow is only a vision.
But today – well lived – makes every yesterday a dream of happiness, and every tomorrow a vision of hope.
Look well, therefore, to this day.
~ Sanskrit proverb ~