3 ways to happiness in Buddhism
The same had happened even before Buddha's time. Among human beings, learned people, scholars, thinkers and different practitioners did not have a common ground idea on happiness. There were lots of assumption, claims by different groups of people. They almost get into conflict because of trying to defend their idea and to invalidate others' assumption. Mainly, those contentous groups were divided into three branches.
a). Happiness from Taste: This school defended their hypothesis that it is taste that make human happy. When we have nice meal, we taste it and we like it. We experience happiness through out taste sense. In fact, they based on idea that when people eat and enjoy their tasty foods, they will be happy. It is somehow reasonable for group of people. Hence, this school could convince few thousand followers.
b). Happiness through sight: The second school claimed that is not taste but happiness happens through our sightseeing. When people see a good image of someone or something they enjoy it; they like it. So sight is subject to happiness. It is quite true even today that people prefer beautiful appearance rather than the ugly one. They did not care much about mind purification, kindness, compassion of a person; what human really cares is pretty looking. It is also true through this claim.
c). Happiness through smell: This last school defended its premise by saying that it is neither taste nor sight but smell that makes human happy. We like smell good; everybody likes good smell. And no one likes bad smell. They will be unhappy when they smell something bad. So, in order to increase our happiness this school of thought suggests to increase the good smell.
It seems that these three schools are convincing. They tend to come up with unique idea about happiness. And that there are many people, in fact, believe these three schools and seek happiness through these three assumptions as well. It is not just the long ancient people that believe in these schools even today we can see there are a lot of people seek happiness through these three ways. Especially in this materialist world, people is finding happiness by trying to earn more money, eating good food in good restuarant, listening to good music in a very fancy club, and watching only nice channel and beautiful boy and girls. They will be unhappy when they see ugly, not nice and not civilized people.
These are all wrong. Happiness can be made through 3 ways above at all. It is even very wrong for today's adult that seek happiness through facebook, going to club, drinking, exchange lots of partners, taking drug and so on so forth. None of these are the solution to happiness.
There are 38 ways to happiness in Buddhism which is more lasting and sustaining happiness. Readers do not need to believe in this article but it is suggested to practice this idea for a while and if readers found goodness in it then take it into your daily practice. But if not, ignore it. As I told at the beginning, I will just explain only 3 ways to happiness among 38 principles. I hope I will have a chance to continue to the other three or four happiness till the end.
So, 3 ways to happiness in Buddhism are said as follow:
1). Not to associate with bad friends: It is neither taste, nor sight and smell that make us happy or sad. It is our association with people. When we associate with bad people they will lead us to bad action and that bad action will result in bad consequences.
2). Associate only with Wise person: Only put yourself in the group of wise people can help us happy. Why because wise person think good, speak good, act good and produce a good habit etc. They will also walk only in the safe, secure and peaceful path. Following them, associating with them and learning from them is making us happiness and lasting.
3). Respect to the appropriate person and objects: Do not just pray for help from any objects or identity. Do not just respect people without any observation, investigation etc. Your head and heart is given to think and compare. Using your reason for you to pay gratitutde to people. This does not mean that you should not respect people. You should but you need to pay gratitude to the person you supposed to. Who are they? They are very first your parents, family, friends, society, leaders, kings, scholars, and those who give the opportunity to learn and live.