The Light of Happy Countries

Written by Gede Prama

Following Bhutan’s heroic steps in 1972 which changed the measurement of a country’s success not only in terms of the goods produced but also in terms of the happiness generated, some world institutions such as the UN began to measure the happiness index of many countries. Using the last index, it turns out that not all surfaces of the earth are dark. Some of the earth’s surfaces are still full of touching lights.

Japan is a country marked by many old people who are not only healthy in body but also strong in soul. In the last rising sun country, they often shared a message like this: “Pay close attention to anything that enters the mouth”. On the island of Okinawa Japan which is known as the old heritage of a healthy way of eating. Learn to stop eating when the stomach is 80 percent full. Wait a few tens of minutes, if you still feel hungry, you may ask for more food. Usually, after a few tens of minutes, the stomach often gives the sign of having enough.

In India, the elders left a simple but meaningful message: “Take time to touch your body”. To put it more precisely, treat your body as beautiful as you take good care of a sacred place. In certain parts where the body give signs of unease, discomfort, or even pain, touch them not only using the hand, but also using the heart (by which read: soft, smooth, full of acceptance).

Old people in Turkey like to laze around warm rocks or warm water. The message, treat yourself warmly, have conversation with yourself also warmly. Then see how your life can turn into a beautiful life. The people of Argentina have another idea, they are guided by their ancestors to always put the family first. Mainly because family is a very beautiful soul garden.

A small country in the southern part of the earth named New Zealand is also a happy country. The cold weather forces them to leave behind the competition, and then that grows into compassion. Especially with mutual care. Most surprisingly, the happiest country is Norway. The country with the very cold weather turned out to be the most happy country. The spiritual lesson is simple, extreme weather outside forces them to warm each others inside. Not only inside the house, but also inside the heart.

Summarized into one, the lights that appear in happy countries can be simplified into a simple conclusion: “Measure life not only by what is stored in the saving books”. Outside the saving books, there are so many things that can make the soul rich. From forgiving each other, filling daily life with full acceptance, up to being diligent and sincere to always share a smile.

In a more poetic and touching language: “Every time you go to bed at night, measure a day not only from the number of fruits you reap, but also in terms of the number of seeds you planted”. Money, goods, praise, pleasure are similar to the fruits. But looking at people with accepting eyes, the sincerity to listen, the honesty to forgive are some seeds that you planted in that day. Over a matter of time, will become fruits in the future.

Among the deep souls are often discussed messages like this: “Bloom where you are planted”. In every religion and tradition there are well-fertile grounds to make souls bloom beautifully. When the soil is dry, learn to blossom into a beautiful frangipani flower there. When the soil is wet, learn to bloom into a beautiful lotus flower there. In short, transform every blessing of the moment into beautiful flowers of happiness and peace.

As the elders in Norway, New Zealand, Turkey do, what matters is not what happens outside. The important thing is how to process it inside. Among the various options available, less complaining more smiling is an option. Looking at what’s around as ingredients to make the soul bloom, that’s another option.

Above all, the body is constantly aging. But the joy of the child inside never gets old. It is always happy inside. For that reason, always spend time to “play” in everyday life. To put it more concrete, look at the funny side of everyday life. At least, learn to sing in the heart. A grandmother who celebrated her 100th birthday in Australia, but is still healthy outside and happy inside, when she was asked her secret answered simply: “Get up in the morning with a grateful heart, do something beautiful for your loved ones. The rest, accept everything with a sincere smile “.

Author: Guruji Gede Prama.
Photo Courtesy: Twitter @Drc_19.
Proofread By: 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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