Enemies of Happiness – Greed

Yet another enemy of happiness may have entered in the mind of some of us. This is greed. It keeps on growing unabated when not controlled. The end result invariably is a disaster. It can be greed for money, it can be greed for power or fame, respect, sex or even attention. Greed for food is also not uncommon. Greed has a tendency to grow faster when you achieve more. Unfortunately greedy people lose the perspective. If the human wanted more for happiness, it may be considered normal. But greed invariably makes you unhappy. In this case the desire is never controlled.
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In fact one can be rich without being greedy. Making more money should not be the objective. Enjoying what you have and of course aspiring for more can be a legitimate goal of successful people in a competitive world. But greed does not allow you to enjoy what you have. It only reinforces your anguish on what you don’t have.
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The great English Victorian explorer – Sir Richard Frances Britten once said: ‘conquer thyself till thou have has done this, thou art but a slave; for it is almost as well to be subjective to another’s appetite as to thine own.’
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Shakespeare the great dramatist discussed these characteristics of human mind in great detail when he created the character of his play Macbeth by the same name. Hunger for more power keeps on increasing until Macbeth is pushed to the wall of disaster.
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Thanks for reading.
 

Enemies of Happiness 2

Yesterday I had talked about 8 enemies of happiness which resides in human’s body or soul. I had detailed 4 out of these that is anger, fear, jealousy and indecision. If you have contemplated as suggested, am confident that you would have found sufficient relevance of this discussion. Today I shall talk about attachment, hesitation, procrastination and greed. These are also happiness spoilers. Greed if goes unrefined, can cause disaster.
Attachment: Bhagwad Gita advises that any human should not be attached to anything. By attachment I mean you should never have such proximity that separation to that particular object may cause distress. Change is the law of Nature. Everything changes. These changes are bound to bring some objects (including people) close to you and some other away from you. In both situations you have to maintain your poise realizing that this is how life is. It was like this. It is so now. And it will remain the same in all times to come. So for our own happiness we can start practicing non attachment.
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Hesitation: Hesitation for anything must be avoided. Your expression is important. If you hesitate to express or to take any action, the opportunity lost will never come back.
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Procrastination: It is malady which inflicts some of us. Postponing tasks or decisions do not allow one to grow. Self esteem is lost and guilt inside the mind grows. Therefore it’s best to eradicate the habit of procrastination.
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Greed: Greed grows like cancerous cells. Ambition is not greed so therefore both these terms must be understood in their proper perspective. Without ambition you tend not to set your goals and follow them. But greed of any kind mostly takes human to a disasters end. In life, we have example of Hitler. In literature, we have example of Macbeth. The character of Macbeth in Shakespearean play by the same name is nothing but an embodiment of Greed. So banish Greed, altogether!
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In my next posting I shall talk about ‘Enemies of Happiness’ outside.
Thanks for reading.

Lessons of Life from Shakespeare.

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Any great literary writer is invariably a great teacher. Writer will not sermonize. Life of the current time (normally) is beautifully portrayed. Yet, one could draw great inferences and learn very useful lessons that help humans to live life better. I don’t claim to have read much of Shakespeare, but I am one of his great admirers.
Works of Shakespeare transcend the limits of time and space. He is as relevant today as he was in his time. He is as relevant in India as in England. I have picked up 4 of his tragedies. According to me these are eye openers for common people like us. The four plays I have chosen to talk about are: Hamlet, Othello, Macbeth and King Lear.
When we read these plays thoughtfully and contemplate, we are able to identify short comings of similar nature in our personalities. We may be quite surprised. How and why these did not receive our attention. We would like to remove these faults even though they may be in very small measure. The classified blemishes I am talking about are:
1. Suspicion, Jealousy (Othello)      
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2. Greed that led to extinction (Macbeth)  
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3. Credulity Prone to flattery (Lear)
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4. Indecision that reaches tragic proportions (Hamlet)
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As I said above reading these plays, we observe that all these weaknesses were foolishly repetitive in the tragic characters. We might find that similarly we too harbor some habits that make us do something which we don’t want, repetitively. It is here that we learn a lesson. One can purge one’s personality if so desire. Undoubtedly, the exercise will require a mentor or a guide.
Thanks for reading.