Posted by: Upāsaka | 03/17/2015

The Wish to Be Happy

Two of my most influential teachers have often equated the wish to be happy with metta and for a long time I don’t think I understood the connection. I mean, what did wanting to be happy have to do with metta, in a real sense. And, although I still have some doubt regarding this teaching I saw, quite clearly, the movement towards pleasure as an expression of the desire to be happy. Granted, this is most often a movement towards an unskillful form of sense pleasure but the kernel of self-love is there albeit in need of education and guidance. Su, my question is: can I begin to see my desire to be happy as a cue to develop skillful forms of pleasure as well as the basis for relating to others rather than as yet one more example of a way in which I have failed myself, society, the Dhamma and the Buddha?

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