The Beautiful City That Makes You Happy

Written by Gede Prama

In the history of modern cities, it has been noted, that for too long humans “happiness center” is located too far from their family. Some people like the night world, some love to go to the mall, some became workaholics spending so much time at the office and also at social organizations. The results have been noted through; suicide rates, divorce rates, drug victims and penitentiary residents which are all increasing.

This situation invites many leaders of the world to review the “happiness center” of their residents who are far away from their family. For that reason, the research and development department of Denpasar’s government is invited to develop the city of the future. Where “the center of happiness” is no longer in the crowd, but in the middle of the family. In order for this idea to be supported by Balinese society, it is important to mention this idea is represented as a form of “deeper offerings” to the ancestors. Especially since most of our ancestors are reborn around families.

As always, futuristic ideas are always being laughed at when they are first delivered. But if we diligently and sincerely want to carry it out, this is the idea that will be creating the future. Borrowing from Mahatma Gandhi’s experience, first of all people will not care. Secondly, they will laugh. Thirdly, it is not impossible that they will attack. And at last, we will win.

With such a spirit, it is worth pondering deeply if the bio-rhythm of nature is rapidly changing. As a result, old measurements are quickly out of date. For example, Bhutan since 1972 abandoned the old size of GNP (gross national product) which measures the performance of the country on the basis of the goods produced. Then replace it with measures of happiness. Forty years later precisely, in 2012 the United Nations began to make the world happiness index. The message is simple, humans not only live with rice alone. The role of the government is to not only encourage people to be productive, but also to encourage people to be happy.

Thus, it is not a leap too brave, nor a leap forward, if anyone dares to start a “family-based city” (the city of happiness in the middle of the family). As a starting point, it is good to build a school which is a happy family, establish interdisciplinary studies on happy families, and require young couples that are planning to get married to attend a “happy family course”.

At the same time, provide government officials at a village level to care for families in their respective areas. Develop a village performance measurement index using family happiness as the primary measure. Just as an example, there is a negative index and there is a positive index. Both are summed up, then become a measure of the performance of each village.

Negative indexes include per capita divorce rates, children under five mortality rate per capita, for example. The positive index includes the number of married couples over 50 years per capita and college graduates per capita. Both are summed to produce a village with a high level of happiness, moderate and low.

Much better, if married couples who have been married to the same person for more than 50 years are given special facilities such as free parking, entering a hotel get a free welcome drink, in the city parks there are special facilities for these couples. In public spaces they provide family friendly places. Family friendly. From father’s seat, mother and child. Up to singing and playing contests for children. Invite people to use Saturdays as family days. In summary, invite society to care for families and to be a cool shelter for the human soul.

At the village and sub-district levels, it is worth developing a happy family service center. That not only can help solve family crises, but also guide families to be a cool garden for many souls. Similar to health centers that care for the physical health of the citizens, it is worth pondering to develop a kind of “health center” for a happy family that cares for the soul of the citizens so that they can also be happy.

Above all, always remember the message at the beginning. Most humans will reincarnate in the family environment. So that anyone who takes care of the family beautifully, is not just giving beautiful offerings to the ancestors, but is also preparing for a much more beautiful future next life.

To summarize, the inhibiting force of family growth is called ego. Once the ego is minimized, so much suffering can be reduced. Families will grow beautifully when people apply motherly instinct and heroic instinct. Concretely, give the widest opportunity to the wife to be close with the children. Encourage the children to honor their father as the ancient humans honoured the heroes. These two instincts are very old. Embedded deeply into the human soul. Only the face on the surface that changes from time to time.

Author: Guruji Gede Prama.
Proofreadby: Kirsty Spence.

About the author

Gede Prama

Gede Prama started his spiritual journey through a dialogue with his symbolic Guru in a village at the north of Bali. The journey is then being enriched with his experiences of studying abroad, his meetings with the world greatest spiritual Gurus: His Holiness Dalai Lama, The Venerable Thich Nhat Hanh, as well as Professor Karen Armstrong; and also being deepened by his intense meditation practices.

Despite the fact that he was once a CEO of a large corporation with thousand of employees, and was traveling abroad frequently for the purpose of teaching, yet, being deeply moved by the Bali bombing incident in 2002, he then decided to leave everything and went back to his home island.
He has never leave Bali for the past few years. In fact, he rarely leaves the silence of the forest where he lives, except for the purpose of teaching at the sacred sites within Bali.

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