How to accept everything as it is instead of wanting what is not


Q: I am spending a lot of time wanting to be happy, to feel love, to be free from anger, anxiety and stress. And although it feels good to meditate on Love, it is also a bit exhausting. There is a feeling of having to keep up the connection to love, and to force a positivity that isn't there. Maybe it is better to just sit and let everything be as it is, without interference? 


A: Yes, this is a beautiful realisation. Paradoxically, when you accept everything as it is, then you are happy. Indeed, our society conditions us to mis-understand happiness as a feeling in the body or a particular outward alignment of events and circumstances. In fact, happiness is natural and effortless - it is our very own Being. And when we sit and let everything be as it already is, we are resting as this Being, this observer that is intimately one with, yet unaffected by, our experiences. On the level of objective experience (thoughts, feelings, perceptions, world), things keep changing. Trying to find lasting happiness there is therefore impossible, since there is no constant. However, when we rest as Being, we find the constant factor behind these ever-changing experiences, and that is where our happiness is found.