Pause a while. Stop everything or anything you are doing or going to do now. Just sit in a calm place. Be comfortable. You can settle down in a chair, a sofa or even lie down on your bed. Shut your eyes, but don`t sleep. Think. Ask yourself, ˜What is the purpose of my life? What is it that I want from this life? Do sensuous pleasures keep me happy forever? Donât I crave for more and ever more? Am I able to avoid pain and suffering that always accompany my life-long pursuit of power, money, and pleasure? How can I really avoid pain and suffering? Is there a way out? What is true happiness? What is the message of the Buddha, the Enlightened One, and how does it help me in my life? Can I actually find the same kind of awakening that will free me from this compulsive pursuit of sensual pleasures that ultimately subject me to untold pain and suffering? How do I go about finding it anyway?
To find answers, go read the story of the Buddha and see if you have in you the same spirit, the same urge for peace and for true happiness that spells freedom from suffering and pain. The Buddhas story is not long and tedious unless you want to make it so. It is not a fable. It is a true story of a prince of a Himalayan kingdom. It happened more than 2500 years ago, much before the story of Prophet Mohammed and even much Jesus Christ was born. It also gave birth to a new non-theistic religion, and more than that, a new philosophy of life that you, like many others, can adopt or adapt with considerable benefit, without sacrificing any of your own religious beliefs.
Prince Siddhartha, son of King Suddhodhana of Kapilavastu ( a kingdom that existed on the present India – Nepal border) lived a life of plenty, pleasure and palace-luxuries, well shielded from the outside world (where the common man experienced misery and poverty, pain and suffering, disease and death), till he attained the age of thirty. One night, however, he renounced his claim to succeed his father, his possessions and all his relatives including his young and pretty wife, who was fast asleep with their newborn son beside her. That night, he started on his journey to discover the life outside as well as the light within. After leading a frugal life, practicing intense meditation and self-mortification, sometimes depriving himself of any food, he realized that the better way to getting enlightenment lay neither in a life of luxury nor in a life of extreme deprivation but in adopting a middle path. He became the Buddha, the Fully Enlightened One.
As long as you crave for sensual pleasures, or your selfishness influences your way of thinking and determines your life’s goals, you only run after a mirage of happiness. If you wish for mental peace instead of agitation, physical rejuvenation instead of exhaustion, spiritual enrichment instead of impoverishment, resist your riotous temptations and stifle your selfishness. Still your anger and greed and jealousy and other negative emotions. Get into rendering selfless service and learn to be content.
Practice meditation. Mine the riches within, rather than pine for the pleasures without. Discover the land of eternal pleasure and unending happiness that is deep down within you, and when love and compassion adorn your personality, you wonât experience any misery or pain or suffering. You will then have unraveled the Buddha that lies in you.