Some people would rather be right than happy.
You’ll know that when you find yourself defending a position or an opinion in an argument. You find it impossible to climb down, let go, withdraw, give in, because you believe that would be losing. And you cannot accept the thought of being seen as a loser. Winning equals happiness and losing equals sorrow, that’s what you think. But hold on a minute! When you are doing that, how do you feel? You are certainly not at peace with your self, you are not satisfied, there is no joy in your conversation and you are unhappy at the thought of losing this…battle! You’ve forgotten it’s only a conversation, it’s only an exchange of views. And who created all this inner peacelessness anyway? You did.
Is it ever worth it? In fact it just becomes a bad habit, and the absence of happiness becomes almost permanent. Time to change. Winning an argument isn’t winning, it is simply the ego’s way of trying to convince you that you are victorious because you avoided defeat.
Question: With whom and in what situations do we tend to find ourselves defending opinions? (it’s usually with the same people, and with similar issues and situations). How do we feel during the process?
Reflection: How can we see yourself responding differently in these situations so that we don’t lose our inner peace and our satisfaction?
Human activities are directed towards acquiring joy and happiness. The acquisition and enjoyment are the two motivations of human actions. You avoid sorrow by acquiring material objects and court joy by containing the objects of pleasure. You are acquiring this material wealth with the belief that you can enjoy it later. You acquire wealth as a preparation against sorrow and actually contacting the object with a belief that you get pleasure out of it. In this pursuit for happiness, your mistake is that your pursuit for happiness is always in the external world. We are seeking happiness at the wrong end. The quest for happiness in the external world is unending. So long as we are seeking happiness in the external world, we will never find it. Seeking happiness in the world is like seeing mirage thinking that there is water available. Arthur Schopenhaur, a German thinker, crystallized this idea as follows: “It is difficult to find happiness within one’s own self, but it is impossible to find it anywhere else”.
There is nothing wrong with the outside world, let the world remain as it is. You need to bring the light of knowledge within. You will then know how to steer your way though the challenges of life.
Give up your thirst for accumulating wealth. Create in the mind thoughts of the reality, devoid of passion. Satisfy your mind with whatever wealth you get by your actions.