Saturday, July 14, 2007

The Witch of Portobello - Excerpt 2

After all, what is happiness?

Love, they tell me. But love doesn't bring and never has brought happiness. On the contrary, it's a constant state of anxiety, a battlefield; it's sleepless nights, asking ourselves all the time if we're doing the right thing. Real love is composed of ecstasy and agony.

All right then, peace. Peace? If we look at the Mother, she's never at peace. The winter does battle with summer, the sun and the moon never meet, the tiger chases the man, who's afraid of the dog, who chases the cat, who chases the mouse, who frightens the man.

Money brings happpiness. Fine. In that case, every one who earns enough to have a high standard of living would be able to stop work. But then they're more troubled than ever, as if they were afraid of losing everything. Money attracts money, that's true. Poverty might bring unhappiness, but money won't necessarily bring happiness.

I spent a lot of my life looking for happiness, now what I want is joy. Joy is like sex - it begins and ends. I want pleasure. I want to be contented, but happiness? I no longer fall into that trap.

When I'm going with a group of people and I want to provoke them by asking that most important of questions: 'Are you happy?', they all reply: 'Yes, I am.'

Then I ask: 'But don't you want more? Don't you want to keep on growing?' And they all reply: 'Of course.'

Then I say: 'So you're not happy.' And they change the subject.

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