28 September 2010 (Shleshi/Bikkurim)|
Day #196, 5934 AM
Sukkot #6 Happiness
What Do You Believe In and Stand For?
With very few exceptions indeed, everyone on this planet is looking for happiness. Psychologists, in an attempt to understand how we work, have correctly concluded that, on a very basic psychic level, happiness is the progressive achievement of a worthy ideal or goal. When a person is working progressively, step-by-step, toward something that is important to him, then he generates within himself a continuous feeling of success or achievement. He feels more positive and motivated, more in control of his life, happier and more fulfilled. He feels like a winner and soon develops the psychological momentum that enables him to overcome obstacles and to plough through adversity as he moves toward achieving the goals that are most important to him.
"Now I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away. Also there was no more sea. Then I, John, saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from Elohim (God), prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from heaven saying, 'Behold, the tabernacle (sukkah) of Elohim (God) is with men, and He will dwell with them, and they shall be His people. Elohim (God) Himself will be with them and be their Elohim (God). And Elohim (God) will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away.' Then He who sat on the throne said, 'Behold, I make all things new.' And He said to me, 'Write, for these words are true and faithful'" (Rev.21:1-5, NKJV).
But there is a problem with this psychic approach to life because if it succeeds, then it 'works' whether the values, morality, ethics or spirituality are good or evil. I think of the conclusion of the Second World War as an illustration. The Allies (consisting of both good and evil people) were euphoric when victory was declared and the war pronounced over. A goal had been reached that took six painful years to achieve and the cost was high - millions killed, millions maimed, millions of broken hearts because of the losses of loved ones. The reality of the aftermath was very different. New goals for reconstruction, successes and failure, all in the name of freedom (at least in the West), and what have we achieved? An emerging European dictatorship, an emerging American dictatorship - all that was fought for, and sacrificed for, has been in vain. Why? Because the goals have been more temporal than spiritual, and the philosophies of men are fatally flawed.
Most of us have set up goals and succeeded in some and failed in others. And even some of the ones we have succeeded in have turned out to be in vain. For years I was a teacher in a secular school, unable to teach spiritual values except by my example, and at the end of it I had a long hard think and concluded: 'All I have succedded in doing to training little devils to become clever devils'. Many of them came from the families of the Úlite and are probably serving the Úlite themselves today. I remember one brilliant girl whom I taught HTML which she used to make a page on witchcraft. True, one or two may remember me or other believers who were at that school and have since found Messiah. But most won't. True, I was earning my daily bread and therefore providing for my family but I was not happy in my job - I did not feel I was giving when I needed to give. And in my last years working there Yahweh showed me again and again that I needed to leave, but I feared for my next paycheck, and in the end poor health forced me out. Now I am living on a fraction of what I earned before but I am doing what Yahweh wants me to do and am well satisfied. My goals are leading to something I know will be fruitful and beneficial. The world may judge it a waste of time but then the world hasn't a clue where it's going or what's coming: I am looking forward to "a new heaven and a new earth" and for "the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from Elohim". That's my goal!
Psychologists will tell you that successful people are successful because they are very clear about their values. And again, the psychologists would be right. And unsuccessful people are fuzzy or unsure, just as complete failures have no real values at all. To be successful, whether in the world or anywhere else, we have to be clear about our values. For the here-and-now, my values are Torah and the example I have of the life of Yah'shua the Messiah (Jesus Christ). For the future, whether in my life or beyond (it doesn't matter), my values will be the Millennial ones. That is my goal. That is what I strive for and what I strive to share and teach. These things give me deep, deep fulfilment because I experience - not mere psychic energy propelling me - but the everlasting power and resource that is the Ruach haQodesh. I am moved by something that is not only endless but immensely beautiful and built 100% in emet or truth...so I don't have to worry about expending my life for a fantasy or an illusion. I know what I am living for.
Every single one of us, religious or unreligious, has to strategically plan his or her life, short- or long-term. If you don't, you end up as a literal or metaphorical tramp on the street going nowhere. That is our part and no-one else can do it for us, even if it is to surrender to someone else! What do you believe in? What do you stand for? Our values lie at the very core of everything we are as human beings. Our values are the unifying principles and core beliefs of our personalities and characters. The virtues and qualities that we stand for and what consititute the persons we have become from the beginning of our lives to this moment. Our values, virtues and inner beliefs are the axle around which the wheel of our lives turns.
So today, on this sixth day of Sukkot I have to ask you, whoever you are, this: What are your values, virtues and beliefs? Are they internally consistent? Do they accord with the reality outside you and the reality within? Do they answer the fundamental questions every honest person has to ask at some point in their lives:
If you don't know the answers to these questions - for sure - then there is no way you can enjoy an integrated life of wholeness and purpose that leads to happiness. Most people ignore these questions and trust in the mythical entity called 'fate'. There is no stability in that. None whatsoever. It is a nihilistic faith, a purposeless one, that has more in common with the fairy godmother of evolution than anything else with its hopeful monsters and blind journey of random atomic and molecular interactions.
- 1. Where did I come from?
- 2. Why am I here?
- 3. Where am I going?
All improvement in life begins with the clarification of your values and then committing yourself to living a life consistent with them. And an important thing to keep in mind is that your goal must be congruent with your belief system or else success will likely linger beyond your reach. But before you even engage in such a process, you need to honestly and seriously ask yourself whether the god or gods of your belief system will see you to your goal even. If you are an atheist your only resourses will be yourself and the people you can persuade to help you. And you will discover, sooner or later, that the people you are relying on will, for the most part, have their own goals and may not see you to the completion or end of your journey leading to your particular goal. People will disappoint you. People will fail you, including some (or even all) of the ones you come to rely on the most. The atheist's world is a very egocentric one with lots of egos all seeking their own goals and invariably conflicting with one another.
If you're a religious person then you will soon find out whether your gods are fiction or demonic entities playing around with you to get you under their control (and even if you're an atheist who doesn't yet believe in these entities, they will be manipulating and controlling you anyway, however much in denial you are). I have spent years sifting through this mess and if you're interested in my conclusion, then please see, Which God Do You Worship? (even if your'e an atheist).
One piece of good news is that our loving Heavenly Father created our bodies with incredible intricacy and with mechanisms to enable us to achieve goals, even if we reject Him. Your mind, for example, contains a cybernetic goal-seeking mechanism. Once you have programmed a thought or desire into your subconscious mind, your subconscious and your superconscious (spiritual) mind take on a latent, innate psychic power of their own that drives and steers you to the attainment of your goal, whatever it is. (And no, it didn't 'evolve' to enable you to be successful - if it had, why is it that less than 3% of adults have clear written goals and plans on how to achieve them? The only 'explanation' then is that the fairy godmother of evolution is in some way malicious and is keeping us deliberately in the dark or suppressing our will to survive, something obviously impossible since natural selection' is not an intelligent entity with wills or goals of her own).
Most of the choices we make in life are usually based on either fear or desire. That applies to both atheists and religious people (atheists are not nearly as rationalistic as they like to make themselves out to be. and often not very 'bright' either). I used to be one and thought I 'knew it all'. I refused to admit that there were inconsistencies with my godless belief system and ignored the warning signals that I was not being logical. That is because we are not just steered by our thoughts. We are not robots or Star Trek-type Mr. Spok's. As French Scientist Blaise Pascal so eloquently put it: "The heart has its reasons, of which reason knows nothing whatever". Those who admire the Mr.Spok syndrome (and it is a dysfunctionality - an illness - precisely because it's not human) tend to have numbed or deadened their hearts because they are hurt or angry with God and people about something.
As we approach the end of the Sukkot season I wanted to make an appeal to those who have not found happiness because they have sought for it in the wrong places, believing in lies and seeking self-justification for bad choices. It is never too late to repent and come home. Don't waste your life in a dead-end set of goals which, once attained, will leave you empty. Like sexual highs, they rise rapidly and fall even more quickly to totally disappear. The true God of this Universe, Yahweh-Elohim, through His Son Yah'shua the Messiah (Jesus Christ), wants you to know, experience and hold onto everlasting happiness, the type that does not fade or whither away along with everything else in this world. You entered this world alone and you will depart from it alone...except with what you are carrying inside.
And remember one last thing: you face your greatest opposition when you're closest to your biggest miracle. See it through and be blessed!
"Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light" (Matt.11:28-30, NIV).