The Path of Enlightenment

"Everyone wants to be happy.  This desire is a major driving force on the planet.  It's normal to seek pleasure and to avoid pain.  It appears easier to feel happy when one is cushioned from the pressures of everyday life.  This view is based on a false notion associating joy with external factors.  Humans are conditioned to believe that if only certain things or people were different, they could be joyful.    This is a trick of the mind, habituated to believe that happiness comes from something outside the self.  In fact, joy has more to do with how a person responds to life events than the events themselves.  What really matters is how the person perceives their situation and whether they can find satisfaction with present circumstances.  This is the key when living in a world of changing conditions.      
A World of Changing Conditions
The only thing for certain is that things will change.   This applies to all external conditions, including the weather.  The blue sky will be replaced by clouds.  After a rain, there may be a rainbow, but only for a while.  The starry night is transformed into a bright day lit by the sun.  Trees covered by multicolored fall leaves become bare in the winter. 
You may be happy with a brand new car, especially in the first year of driving it around town.  The new model likely has more features than your last one, is free of dents, and has that "new car" smell.  What happens when the "new car" smell fades and you notice the first dent after returning to a parking lot?  Are you still happy with the car?  How about next year when you learn that newer models have fancy convenient options not available with your car?  Still happy? 
When you are dissatisfied with something you suffer.  The suffering can be related to a car that's no longer new, a disharmonious relationship, or your own body as it ages.  The beings that walked the path of enlightenment before you were faced with similar sorts of sufferings in their time.  
Cultivating Joy in the Midst of Challenges
Like the enlightened masters of long ago, you can also learn to cultivate joy in the midst of challenges.  You can discover how to transform adversity into the seeds of enlightenment.  It is not an easy path, but if you will steadfastly commit yourself to your spiritual awakening, the rewards are beyond any earthly treasure.  When you feel discouraged or overwhelmed, remember that enlightenment is actually encoded in your human DNA. 
   
As you continue the journey of rediscovering your Divine nature, we surround
you with our love and blessings.  We are The Council of 12."

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