Sometimes people confuse between Joy and Happiness… Joy is an inner feeling. Happiness can be expressed in the external world. Joy is a way to internally connect with purpose and meaning. Once we deeply connect with our inner core, then we feel joyful, though our external situation or circumstances could be full of strife and challenges! On the other hand, Happiness usually involves pursuit of ‘something’! This is the real reason why most people define Happiness by saying things like ‘I will be happy when I accomplish this or become that’ and so on…
Joy requires some initial work towards living a ‘Conscious and Connected Life’! It requires us to be mindful, live consciously and connect with our inner being- but once we connect with our higher self, it allows us to endure hardships and trials.
Happiness on the other hand is a choice people make by the other choices they make in their life. Every choice we make is inadvertently linked to our beliefs, ideals, and values! People make a choice to be happy by making purposeful and meaningful choices in their life! Because of this, what can make one person happy is not the same for another people. But where joy is concerned- that is not the case… when we are in-sync with our authentic self, we feel Joyful…
Happiness is often viewed as the opposite to sadness. Though this can be misleading since it is very much possible to feel both ‘happy and sad’ at the same time and many a times, about the same thing! For e.g. you get an exciting new job offer in another state and are happy about leaving the next and exploring the greater outside world… BUT at the same time, you know that you will miss the safety, support and cocoon of being at home with parents. So, in this case, you will be feeling happy and sad about the same topic of taking up a new job away from home.
Joy on the other hand does not have any opposite per se! It springs forth in our mind and heart as pleasant feelings and sensations because of our connection with our true self, making us do activities that are in-sync and in accordance with our genuine authentic self!
Every person has the ability to establish such a deep connection and feel profound joy in their life!
All emotions have a saturation point, beyond which our body’s nervous system freezes up and we cannot feel the emotion anymore. Ji Won was at that point with his emotion of ‘shock’. Juma turned around, looked at him and smacked him on his back with her arm. She snapped her fingers right in front of his face and said, “hey... breathe deep. This is just me, your friend…”
Ji Won came out of his stupor and said, “yes, it was my niece. I had taken her to the playground, and she fell while running. Just to console her and to stop her crying, I had rubbed her knee as if I was pulling out her hurt and throwing it away with the breeze. I had told her that the pain had flown away. Surprisingly, she felt good. I had never thought much about it, but now that you say it, I remember. But how did you…” his voice trailed off.
“… know? Come on Ji Won, ofcourse I know, it is a soul connection between us, for a reason!” Juma said with a twinkle in her eyes and started singing off-key again. Ji Won joined in. He was a singer. He had to make an effort to match Juma’s bad singing. But it was more fun singing off key with her on this trail in the middle of nowhere, than he had ever felt singing perfectly in tune, on stage, in front of a massive crowd of raving fans.
Ji Won was experiencing joy… there is usually no reason why we feel this emotion. When we are in-sync with our self, it just seems to pour out from somewhere deep within our heart. We feel alive and vibrant.