Thinking of the path of joy, I don’t mean a life that features especially exciting or happy events.
Great joy means paying attention to the joy that your love can readily find in life.
In family and friends. Work. Play and relaxation. The “little” things that include what it feels like to have a clean body, adequate shelter, and enough food.
The natural world is especially helpful for nurturing our joy in relation to the world. Sights and sounds like the broad sky, the wind’s sweep, and the outreach of branching trees expand the soul.
To notice your joys instead of minimizing or discounting them is to become joyous.
Notice joy, nourish joy, consciously take advantage of your opportunities to experience joy.
Joy known over a long period of time takes you beyond yourself, deepening and expanding your mind beyond the boundaries of your disconnections.
Then you notice how very much about the world there is to love, and this becomes the space that you inhabit. Over time, the normal reading on the scope of your desire for the well-being of others enlarges to include beloved individuals in totalities of concern: your community, nation, species, planet.
You could say that home, as a sense of self, is where the heart is. The more you care about something, the more that you identify with it. When you discover that you ultimately care about the greatest context for all our lives, then the power of this larger and more inclusive caring exceeds that of your caring for your separate self. That is to value others, this life, this world and the joy that comes with your value.
You’re likely to outlive some of your greatest joys.
Don’t let that be the only period in your life when you become highly aware of them.
Notice joy now and it will help you become a person of peace, integrity, and strength even when you recognize less joy in your life, joy continues to be counted.
Taken from writings of Mr. Paul Martin.