The Anxiety Of Happiness

Are we able to experience happiness without anxiety? Is there anything that is not shadowed by anxiety or fear, some insecurity? For me, this has been a year of learning about anxiety and fear in preparation for our Mahasri Yoga July 2013 charity fundraiser (for BVMI) “Yoga for Fear and Anxiety”. The interest continues so in this post I would like to share, “The Anxiety of Happiness” by Sharon Salzberg in the December 16 online newsletter by the Mind & Life Institute. She is the co-founder of the Insight Meditation Society in Barre, Massachusetts.

We often begin our meditation with a reflection on a passage or poem and Sharon does this in her writing with a section of Robert Frost’s poem Escapist-Never:

His life is a pursuit of a pursuit forever.
It is the future that creates his present.
All is an interminable chain of longing.

Here is the crux of the matter: “There is an anxiety in happiness that is solely based on the experience of pleasure (as nice as it is) because along with that dependence comes a need for the pleasure not to change.”

For the complete writing and the little frog story, please click on the link above.

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