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For eternal happiness the only way is to know the Self. The truth will then shine forth from your heart like sunshine. Mind becomes untroubled and real happiness will flood it. The Self and happiness are identical.
Sri Ramana Maharshi,
A Practical Guide to Know Yourself
 
Many people come to meditation, myself included, with a formula by which we’ve sought peace. Somewhere we’ve come up with the idea that if only we could quiet our mind, we could find peace. The formula undoubtedly is born out of the distress many of us experience when our mind is running unchecked. Thought upon thought upon painful thought about what’s wrong with me, what’s wrong with you, what’s wrong with the situation, what should happen, what we hope won’t happen, and an often-times vague sense of unease and impending doom. We take a look at the inside of our minds and, when we try to think of how to handle every problem we can discern there, we find ourselves confronted with a dike that has far too many holes for the number of fingers we have available to plug them. It can be unbearable. And what we end up wanting is just a simple respite from the unceasing noise. So please, pour me a drink, give me a pill, teach me meditation. I hear that it will quiet my mind. Then, perhaps, I will have a moment of peace.
 
This formula is correct; however, we have it backward. Peace is not the product of a quiet mind; rather, a quiet mind is the product of peace. Of bliss.
 
When we meditate, we settle down out of the level of activity and into the level of Being. The level where we are able to feel ourselves at one with nature, where we know ourselves as the Self. This level of pure Being is also the level of pure bliss. The place of happiness. And when meditation takes our mind into this place, it ceases its chatter. Because what the mind has been chattering about is how to find happiness. What needs to change, in ourselves or in the world, in the past or in our future, in order to find happiness. And when we take our mind to this place of pure bliss, it naturally quietens because it cannot imagine any place better than where it is. It cannot imagine us feeling better than the way we feel here. It cannot imagine a place of greater happiness. So it becomes quiet. We have our moment of rest. 
 
And when we come out of this place, we have some of that bliss accruing to us and we bring it along with us into the world, helping us to begin to find a bit more of it in our day to day life. And so it goes. Bliss building upon bliss, until happiness actually becomes the order of the day, and a quiet mind becomes our norm.
 
Today I will be sure to give myself two 20 minute opportunities to experience bliss, morning and evening. And during the time I am not meditating, I will gently remind myself that the bliss is still here, right below the thoughts, and I will set for myself the task to step out of the thinking into present moment awareness so that I may feel it.
Moon and Clouds, Studio City, CA
All original material copyright © 2018 Jeff Kober