Suffering, unhappiness, infelicity… why do these arguments persist when the aim of an individual interested and involved in a work for self-development seeks the opposite? Indeed, objectively seen, it would seem there is no reason for unhappiness or to give importance to this argument. But, unhappiness remains a common experience.
The Buddha stated that the reality of suffering is a premise to his system and, of course, he showed the remedy; many other teachings have noticed the presence of suffering as a matter of fact.
It would seem that, despite of all the efforts, humans are really not happy.
It doesn’t matter even if they have acquired wealth, social power, are revered, and at the height of success or a prestigious social status.
Every human being, within himself, constantly feels a lack that drives him to seek or delude himself more and more, but with the result of never finding the things he seeks, for anything that could quench this thirst.
This happens because the solution to this problem doesn’t lie outside of himself. It doesn’t lie in the “things” he wishes, in possessing something, in reaching an external goal, such as it doesn’t lie in any privilege or, even, in being loved by someone. It’s true, every one of us feels the need to be loved, but the solution which could stop this pain, this suffering, doesn’t necessarily lie in this. Unfortunately, it’s a statement easily verifiable from many (if not everyone) of us.
What could be understood and, hopefully, at a second moment realized, is that this problem – suffering itself, doesn’t lie outside of ourselves; nor in life, nor in society, nor in the world or in the difficulties we have to face in our daily lives. Indeed, humans throughout history have shown the skill of being able to overcome every “natural obstacle”- he built houses, cities, embanked rivers, crossed the seas ,climbed the highest mountains, cultivated the most arid ground, etc… such as he overcame war, epidemics, famine, disasters, and each time he has stood up on his own legs. And he worked with strength to leave to his children, a promise.
In such situations, humans expressed and still express possibilities that are ordinarily unexpressed.
The “problem” doesn’t lie outside of himself, but in that lack in himself – the lack of a “something” that could be described as a certain individuality. And this lack drives him to seek, to wish, to need in a never ending path since the beginning of the ages. What the saddest thing is that, effectively, the happiness he seeks is just one step from him. A small, but fundamental step; because, it’s not a matter of reaching other external goals, it’s not a matter of adding further things – it’s a fact of “who” the subject is that wishes.
In contemporary society, much is said about the possibilities for the development of “new technologies” for a better future, but until all this, there will be the product of a human being that cultivates egoisms, greed, fanaticisms, vices, there will be no equity for all; it will happen as is happening right now: a barrier between those who have too much, and those who have nothing.
A real progress, a real evolution lies in the changing of human tendencies and attitudes, distorted by a wrong conception that humans have of themselves.
“I am not what I think or consider I am. So, what am I?”
There is nothing that has to be sought in a fantastic, mysterious and unknown place: it’s all right here, right now, in front of our noses or, better said, beyond our noses, inside of us.
All that has been to be said has been said. The wise philosophers and the enlightened masters said all that they had to say. There are practically no more secrets, even if we could detect, at a first glance, this statement, but it’s true. The only “secret” is the clear, sincere, pure vision that could bring us to a knowing that could make us able to feel the simple wish to live as what we, effectively, in our deepest self, still are – emancipated, free human beings.