Seems like an odd title for this blog but I feel it’s an apt heading for something I have seen time and time again. How often has a person run away from their “problems” only to realise too late that the problems they face are themselves? How many of our problems are actually created by our own minds and the fractured elements that make up ourselves?
We have all imagined it. How great it would be to spend 1 or 2 years sitting by a beach in a tropical paradise, leaving our problems far behind? We leave the world we are in and go where there is sun, sea and coconut water on tap! (I’m a big fan of coconut water btw…very nutritional but not going to get into that during this blog..!). Apologies for digressing..anyway..back to the sun and sea. So, we sit on the beach and feel the sun and touch the sand beneath our feet. It’s all great. It’s a picture we all have at some point, the eternal “What if”. What if we could do that, wouldn’t we be happy? What if we just ditched all our problems and responsibilities and called it quits for a while? We’d be happy, right?
I hate to dampen this picture with a torrential rainstorm but I think we’d be very wrong to jump to that conclusion.
Happiness should never depend on external conditions. It is something that’s fashioned from within and shouldn’t be generated by external sources. Of course, you could argue, the sun and sea would make things finer. But you wouldn’t be escaping your problems because you can’t escape yourself. As you sit on the beach with the sun and the sea it would gradually dawn on you that the problems you left are your own. And if you become unhappy in a perfect paradise, what then? What dreams could you then have of escape from the world? You would suddenly realise that the problems you face are in fact staring at you in the mirror every morning.
I would like at this point to quote the author and philosopher James Allen;
“Men fly from creed to creed, and find unrest; they travel in many lands, and discover—disappointment; they build themselves beautiful mansions, and plant pleasant gardens, and reap—envy and discomfort. Not until a man falls back upon the Truth within himself does he find rest and satisfaction ; not until he builds the inward Mansion of Faultless Conduct does he find the endless and incorruptible Joy, and, having obtained that, he will infuse it into all his doings and possessions”
Until we actually work on us we can’t really get anywhere. Running away to a beach in paradise won’t make any difference until we realise that the person we are truly running away from is staring at us 24/7 in the mirror. By working on ourselves, we store up unconditional happiness. Eventually, by closing our eyes in silent contemplation, we can be on that beach. The external world around us really doesn’t matter as much as the internal world within.
Divorce rates in the United States in 2012 were between 40-50%. For people getting remarried this was considerably higher, between 70-75%. How many people are just “jumping ship” without even trying to be married? How much do we now value and honour something that was once considered so special? These statistics are even more concerning when you think that separation isn’t even included in the stats. Permanent separations don’t even show up in the figures. I’m not saying that divorce and separation aren’t needed. If it’s not working, it’s not working. But how soon have we come to that conclusion? Could more have been done? Divorce rates in the 1960’s were between 20-25%. What has changed so much since then? Have we become a throw-away society? Do we run away from problems rather than actually sort them out?
It’s very easy to run away. It’s so much harder but so much braver to stand and fight for what you believe in. Are we runners or fighters? Which are you?
“You can run away from yourself so often, and so much, just because the broken pieces of you cut your feet too deeply if you stay around for too long. But then what if someone were to come along and pick up those pieces for you? Then you wouldn’t have to run away from yourself anymore. You could stop running. If someone sees you as something worth staying with— maybe you’ll stay with yourself, too.” — C. JoyBell C