Known as ‘The Happiest Man in the World,’ celebrated Buddhist monk Matthieu Ricard reveals ten common paradoxes that keep us from living our best lives
Avoid the impulses below, says scholar-healer Matthhieu Ricard, and you’ll be primed for lifelong happiness.
1. Becoming rich, powerful and famous.
2. Treating the universe as if it were a mail-order catalog by expecting it to gratify our every desire.
3. Yearning for the “freedom” to achieve every last wish. This is not freedom, but being the slave of your own thoughts.
4. Seeking too much pleasure. Pleasurable sensations soon become dull, and often become unpleasant.
5. Maliciously taking revenge on someone who has hurt you. By doing so, you become like them and poison your own mind.
6. Assuming that any one thing will make you happy. Such predictions usually don’t turn out to be true.
7. Expecting all praise and no criticism. Without criticism, you won’t progress.
8. To vanquish all your enemies. Animosity never brings happiness.
9. To never face adversity. Refraining from doing so will make you weak and vulnerable.
10. Expending all your effort on taking care of yourself alone. Altruism and compassion are the roots of genuine happiness.
Former geneticist Matthieu Ricard is a Buddhist monk, humanitarian and international bestselling author of Why Meditate: Working with Thoughts and Emotions. Visit him on the web at matthieuricard.org.