Not many people ever find one much less the other; in fact, what they tend to do is settle or agree to strive no more, which, in my opinion, is the same as giving up. There are few things in this world worthy of one’s life or dedicated energy, but if there is one it is either love or happiness.

Many think of love as that burning passion that stokes the fires and make the juices flow, but more often than not they are deceived by in-born physical reaction rather than even a shade of love. Love is selfless. It has less to do with the individual than with others. It is the joy of seeing someone else’s happiness because of something you’ve done.

It is the feeling of the protector of another when the odds are not in our favor, but you step into the fray willingly and even with some exhilaration because what you are about to do is driven by love There are more sophisticated ad elevated words to describe the phenomena, but they are of little importance if all can’t share the message, which is love is not about what you get out of it, but what others obtain from you. It is that simple.

By giving more, you enable happiness; the sparks of life and the deep pools of emotion that flow in all of us, they are your gifts to others. It is your donation to the spirit of those around you, about whom you care the most.

There is no happiness in taking, only smug satisfaction of accumulation, which soon wears thin as a dinner of water. It is not enough; it does not nourish the soul. The accumulation of things brings only objects that had no choice in being part of your life. It is the same with people and as with things. People pretend good will and happiness, but as a façade to hide the reality of their existence.

More times than not, there is someplace else they’d rather be. Many mistakenly think that being paid well and personal loyalty go together; thus the lords of prosperity shudder in disbelief when the most trusted servant slides a knife between their ribs and smiles while doing it. Disregard for people results in a lonely and distrustful life of never knowing when or if someone is coming to put the blade to you.

There are takers who are loved and respected because they honor those that bestow gifts upon them by accepting graciously; just as they honor those that give by also returning the gesture. That is love for the living and respect for life that exists. Gifts and sacrifices to invisible entities waste love in that the gifts cannot be returned except in imaginary and tortured logic that leaks like water through sand. Love is for the here and now; for people deserving of life’s bounty despite their situation, site of birth or biological differences.

Today measures our giving, not in pious words or brazen public donation, but in love for other human beings that need your help at this moment. Love comes to those who give in that spirit, expecting no joyous reunion, no eternal flitting among the clouds or heavenly chorus; our thanks come from those to whom we give. It is not a forced gift, nor tithe to invisibility; it is simply the right thing to do.

It starts with the family because no other should ever supersede that basic unit. Branches and twigs will fall and be lost from the family tree, but it should never be a result of our failure to love. Loving is its own happiness. It is pleasurable to love even when that affection is not returned or rebuked. However, love is not always a reciprocal arrangement, but it is always love and it costs nothing to give. It is the same joy of watching children open gifts you supplied on Christmas morning; it doesn’t matter if there is a solitary thing for you under the tree as the joy in each child’s face makes giving well worth the effort.

In life you will love many and they will build happiness around you like a fort, but where there is love, hatred is often not far away because it is the opposite side of the coin; it is there because no one directs that individual in the way of love or happiness. Hating people are not happy people because they can’t be; like mixing oil and water, the two won’t stay, but if the one or the other is siphoned away, there is an opportunity to learn the ways of love and happiness. Hatred eats away the heart and places blame in inappropriate places even though it is a fire that burns only on its own fuel and perhaps that of others, but it never brings happiness.

Love is being able to see past those flames and still offer a hand as a gift of happiness; whether it is accepted is not your burden, that fact you made the effort is what counts in the greater scheme of things; for there are none as blind as those who will not see. Reassess your life today and see if you are a giver or a taker; if the equation comes back tilted one way or the other that doesn’t mean all hope is lost, it simply means you need to make some adjustments to bring more happiness into your life and others.

The onus is on you and no one else. You can read all the self help books your eyes can fathom, pray until your knees are sore and wish until Tinkerbelle comes back to life, but it won’t happen without you making the first move. It is a conscious decision to make it happen; it requires no divine intervention or Congressional decree, love and happiness is strictly in your hands and heart.

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Comment by Donald R Barbera on August 5, 2013 at 1:41pm

The chemical connection is a definite as they map brain connections using MRI-F technology. It isn't perfected but it leads that way.

Comment by Dyslexic's DOG on August 5, 2013 at 10:13am

Neuro-Psychology believe that they have almost mapped out the stages of "LOVE" and thus defined the relationship.

There is the "LUST" stage which can occur within 1/5th of a second of seeing an attractive object/partner/art/face/body/etc...  This produces a known set of chemicals and excites a specific set of brain structures and other organs.

Then there is the "LONG TERM LOVE" set of responses and chemicals that assist in keeping the contentment and closeness going.

Then there is the subtle "Close Friend/Family" set of reactions and chemistry which simply maintains a feeling of trust and empathy with these partners and family members.

Many of these "LOVE" characteristics are already mapped and known.

Thus scientists are very close to fully defining "LOVE".

Truth Being: Love is a chemical based Illusion which we evolved for propagation of our species and social cohesion.

It's just another example of our brains deceiving us into believing Love is something real, when in fact it's just a set of chemical reactions within the brain.

Comment by Dyslexic's DOG on August 5, 2013 at 9:12am

ROFL Donald, taking the first step to complete happiness.  :-D

Comment by Donald R Barbera on August 5, 2013 at 4:38am
I'm going to change my avatar to something less stern.
Comment by Dyslexic's DOG on August 4, 2013 at 10:33pm

Thanks Donald, though you could start with a happier looking avatar! 

Love: Dopamine, Oxytocin (the drug released when kissing), Serotonin plus few others into the cocktail we call "Love".  "One of the key sites for love-induced analgesia is the nucleus accumbens, a key reward addiction centre for opioids, cocaine and other drugs of abuse. The region tells the brain that you really need to keep doing this." from:

Happiness also has a lot to do with brain chemistry, but, this can be better controlled by the individual through attitude.

Research has so far found that the sense of helping others induces happiness brain chemical reactions giving not only great personal satisfaction, but, possibly contributing to living longer.

The other key to happiness is being able to let go of past disappointments and problems.

My parents are the worst at this, they never let go of anything and if a wrong was done to them, they dwell on it for years afterwards.

The Taoist I shared accommodation with in my youth taught me by example, that if you don't value possessions, nobody can wrong you by stealing or tricking you out of money nor possessions.  So I care very little for monetary values nor possessions.

I also believing that forgiving those who hurt you can help improve your happiness.

I usually forgive and forget wrongs done against me, some are harder than others, but again, like my parents, dwelling on such wrongs can eat you from the inside and destroy any real chance of happiness.

Aye M8.  :-D~

Comment by Michael Penn on July 30, 2013 at 7:48am

I certainly agree. My wife thinks love is the fairy tale where you find happiness with your "knight in shining armor." Often she is not sure that I am him. (She's half my age.) I say that love is a decision. To believe otherwise you base love on emotion and feelings. If you have decided to love somebody, often the ensuing journey will have many moments of happiness.

In a moment of bliss two people holding hands will say "are you thinking what I am thinking?" NO. No they are not. If it was possible you could do stage tours with them and make a little money. Trust me on this one!



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