Day 26 :: Joy (Part 2)

"Learning to feel joy for others can help transform our own suffering and self-centeredness into joy." - Joan Halifax Roshi

A moment of truth: I've been really cranky since I wrote about joy yesterday. I've really wanted to be cheerful, and I'm not giving up, but I'm refocusing my attention a bit. Instead of trying to will myself into a joyful state of mind, I am, instead, looking to rejoice in the happiness of others.

This practice, known as sympathetic joy, is another Buddhist teaching that sits alongside compassion, loving kindness and equanimity, (these are called the Four Perfect Virtues). Sympathetic joy allows us to celebrate the basic goodness and fundamental well being of other beings. It allows us to feel happiness for others' fortune and success instead of jealous or envious. And in turn, it allows us to feel greater joy toward ourselves and our own capabilities for happiness.

You can help me out! Please tell me what is bringing you joy in your life right now. What successes or good fortunes are you rejoicing in? I would really love to be happy for you.


SwedeLife said...

HA! Anyway, I am loving that my 4 year old will not let me water the garden with out taking off all her clothes and running in the hose. it is at times annoying if I just want to water the plants, but then, really, how can I not be inspired her willingness and abandon in the face of an oppurtunity for joy?! I can easily pass up the chance to be sprayed by a hose, mmmmmm, where do we lose that desire, huh? And I know my future 8 year old, future 12 year old may feel so playful, so connected ot me, so I remember ot enjoy it while it lasts. I am also loving that the pictures of Sweden which once looked like a dream of a foregin life have become a reality and day to day living is happening in a place I was just imagining of a year ago. I still have rose colored glasses on about it. I live in Europe! How cool is that? Little red farm houses and trains are things in our day to day world, not just fanatasy toys. And thye sell blueberry juice at the store. Love that, and elder flower juice- juice from flowers. Yum. It is supposed to make you happy, and it works for me!

SwedeLife said...

I also have to say it is impossible to be grumpy when standing at the bottom of a waterslide. At the waterpark last week, I was watching my 4 year old while standing at the base of the slide holding the baby. It was great to hear splash after splash, and feel waves of joy come flying down the slide every few seconds wit heahc new kid that was being spilled out into the pool before me. I had a huge grin the whole time I stood there watching. Then it was my turn, which was even more fun!

Rose said...

Okay, so now I'm ready to pack my bags for Sweden!

What is bringing me joy right now:

-a quiet morning spent reading while the kids played quietly and The Daddy slept in.

-a vacation at home with my family, instead of a stressful one spent in airplanes and hotels.

-being able to leisurely cook a meal since I have an extra set of hands at home right now.

-the fact that my dog is healthy for the first time in years.

-being able to sleep in my own bed with my husband, through the entire night, without getting up to tend to a baby or child!

Michelle said...

whoot! whoot! great post. :) i really have to stretch my mind for this one right now 'cuz i am in such a funk... i'm grateful for: having two healthy children, a quality life partner, the way my family loves me, the love i feel for them, our home, air conditioning, fresh clean cold water to drink, financial aid covering my classes and books, having direction in life, internet access, typing skills, quality friends, electricity, clean sheets on my bed every week, our washer and dryer, and our pug - camus.

thanx for making me think about all that!

Michelle said...

ps: i have to go with "grateful" right now, 'cuz joy is totally eluding me. sorry. but grateful is good, right? close enough, anyhow!

oh wait, i thought of one, i feel joy when i hear hal walk through the door after a long day.