photo courtesy npanth
borrowed from The Daily Om
Generosity Of Spirit
Being Happy For Others
We all want to be the kind of people who are happy for others when they experience success or a cause for celebration in their lives, but it isn’t always easy. Sometimes powerful, dark feelings come up at times when decorum dictates that we should be feeling the opposite. Instead of reaching out and celebrating for our loved one, we may feel the rising up of our own pain. This pain may arise because we feel jealous of our friend for having something we don’t have. It may arise because our friend’s success will lead to us losing them in some way. And it may arise for reasons we don’t yet understand. The important thing is not to brush it under the rug, but to take it seriously and look at it; suppressing it will only make it worse. At the same time, we need to be sure to find a way to congratulate our friends and celebrate their successes as if they were our own.
The struggle with being happy for others presents itself early in life. If a child wants a toy and another child has it, the child will try to get it or will break down in tears. Those primal feelings are still present in most of us, and we have to acknowledge them when they arise. At the same time, it is when we care enough for someone to let go of what we want for ourselves that we grow as people. It can be a difficult dance to find ourselves suspended between wanting the toy and throwing a party for our friend who got the toy. Yet, it is in throwing the party that we share in the joy-and, to some extent, the toy-rather than cutting ourselves out of it.
Extending ourselves to celebrate the happiness of others requires a generosity of spirit that we sometimes find only in the process of doing it. So when your best friend moves to Spain with the person you had a crush on, tend to your broken heart but throw them a going away party too.