Brian Wilcox. 'Seat Beside Frozen Sasanoa River'
But those who realize the Self are always satisfied. Having found the source of joy and fulfillment, they no longer seek happiness from the external world. . . . Not dependent on any external support, they realize the joy of spiritual awareness. With consciousness unified through meditation, they live in abiding joy.
*Eknath Easwaran. The Bhagavad Gita: 3.17, 5.21.
The Sage said, "There is one trait common to all overly religious?" "What is that?" asked a follower. "A lack of joy."
For the Kingdom of God is . . . a matter of . . . living a life of goodness and peace and joy in the Sacred Spirit. If you serve Christ with this mindset, you will please God. Other people will approve of you, too.
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A young monk lived in a desert monastery; he was earnest in living Christ's teaching. He read something he did not understand, so he went to his abbot. He asked what it meant. When the abbot heard the question, he commenced laughing. The abbot walked away, still laughing.
The abbot's behavior upset the young man. For the next three days, he could not eat, sleep, or think properly. Afterward, he returned to the abbot and told him how upset he had been. The abbot said, "Monk, do you know what your problem is? Your problem is that you are worse than a clown!"
The young monk, startled, said, "How can you say such a thing?! How can I be worse than a clown?" The abbot answered, "A clown enjoys seeing people laugh. You? You are disturbed when another person laughs. Tell me, are you not worse than a clown?" Upon hearing this, the monk started laughing. From this time forth, he was a joyful monk, and often a laughing one too.