Missing Out on Your Own Happiness

Wise owl

Thomas Merton reminds me of a wise owl.

“In humility is the greatest freedom. As long as you have to defend the imaginary self that you think is so important, you lose your peace of heart…

As soon as you take yourself seriously and imagine that your virtues are important because they are yours, you become the prisoner of your own vanity, and even your best works will bring and deceive you.

Then, in order to defend yourself, you will begin to see sins and faults in the actions of others. And the more unreasonable importance you attach to yourself, the more you will tend to build up your idea of yourself by condemning other people.”

~ Thomas Merton “New Seeds of Contemplation.”

When we find ourselves caught in the trap of trying to be more virtuous and better than other people, we miss out on our own happiness.

Peace of heart ( love this expression) comes from accepting ourselves just as we are, and being true to our inner nature. It isn’t about how others see us, how impressive we are in the work that we do, or how many people like us on Facebook.

This is a lesson for every adolescent … and every adult who hasn’t gotten over themselves yet.

Love yourself, share your gifts and let the rest go.



39 thoughts on “Missing Out on Your Own Happiness

  1. Wise words, Val.

    โ€œThe reason men are so anxious to see themselves, instead of being content to be themselves, is that they do not really believe in their own existence.โ€ ~ Thomas Merton, A Search for Solitude: Pursuing the Monkโ€™s True Life

    Here’s to being content to be ourselves.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. True, true and true. One of my favorite and most used expressions is “Nobody’s that special.” We are each unique expressions of the One, but none more special than another. I know this to my core. So get over yourselves, I say! It’s a happier place to be, inside and out. โค

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Even if we have more or less ‘gotten over’ ourselves, this is a great reminder! It is so easy to fall back and start defending the ego ๐Ÿ™‚ Thanks, Val!

    Liked by 1 person

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