Happy is a state of being, an aspect of mind. A perspective, an outlook, an orientation, an attitude, a point of view. It is the way we look at what we see. Joseph Campbell called for "The joyful participation in the sorrows of the world." And invited us to walk right into life as it is and embrace without hesitation the full pathos of the Mystery at the heart of Life and Being. He said, "The Cosmic Dancer, declares Nietzsche, does not rest heavily in a single spot, but gaily, lightly, turns and leaps from one position to another. It is possible to speak from only one point at a time, but that does not invalidate the insights of the rest." (The Hero with a Thousand Faces p. 196) And advised that we "Say 'Yes!' to it all!" We live as full participants in the moment of our living no matter what that entails. We are here/now for the good we are able to bring forth in response to what is being called for by the situation we find ourselves in-- one situation after another, all our life long-- without being overwhelmed and undone by what we have to work with. We step up and do what needs doing as the Cosmic Dancer we are, bringing blessing and grace, compassion and justice to bear on where we are, no matter what. We live as vehicles of hope and mercy, anyway, nevertheless, even so-- drawing our strength from, not the results and outcomes of our living, but the foundation, center, core of our life. Zen Master Yun-Men said it like this: "You should withdraw inwardly and search for the ground upon which you stand-- thereby you will discover what truth is." And live from there in the joyful embrace of all things.
Fear (Anger, Hatred, Jealousy, Ruthlessness, etc.) , Desire (Greed, Lust, Passion, Obsession, Compulsion, etc.), Duty (Responsibility, Obligation, Subservience, Obeisance, etc.), are forever (since the Buddha's and the Christ's temptations) listed as our primary motivations, as the heart of human-being-hood, and the things we must escape by taking refuge in illumination (enlightenment, realization, etc.) and not-caring about the diversions and distractions of the world. Well. That pisses me off. It places "I Want More Now!" ("And Will Do Anything To Get It, Have It, Keep It, Increase It!") at the center of who we are. And misses entirely the grace and wonder-- the salvific mystery-- of laughter and tears, of joy and sorrow. I watched four episodes of Mandalorian before quitting at the prospect of more of the same forever. The man behind the mask never laughed or cried. He just killed whomever wasn't doing it his way (The Way It Is). He was/is a weapon in the hands of Fear/Desire/Duty. A non-human being. A non-sentient being. No actual non-human being kills everything that doesn't do it the Right Way. Only human non-humans do that. Or thinks it can only be happy when all threats to happiness are destroyed. Happy is not what we have, it is who we are. For. No. Reason. Happy. Here. Now. How about that? It is a different way of thinking about motivation, and life. We don't have to kill anything, or possess anything, before we can be happy. We can just be happy now. Here. With things as they are. Why not? What is stopping you from being happy to be here, now, with things exactly as they are? Laughing and crying as is appropriate to the occasion?