The Habits of Happiness – Matthieu Ricard

This Ted Talk (20.54mins) the Habits of Happiness – Matthieu Ricard starts with an analogy – that no-one wakes up in the morning and wants to suffer. So happiness is something that human beings would like to experience. Matthieu goes on to discuss –

  • Happiness and pleasure
  • Definitions of happiness and wellbeing – “wellbeing is not just a pleasurable sensation it is a deep sense of serenity and fulfillment. A state that underlies all emotional states and all the joys of sorrows that can come ones way”
  • Can we have wellbeing by being sad?
  • The quest of happiness and what it means (often trying to fix/control outside instead of looking at the inner conditions). “Isn’t it the mind that translates the outer conditions in to happiness and suffering?”
  • How do we nurture the inner conditions for happiness?
  • Consciousness is like a mirror and the mirror cannot be tainted or modified by the thoughts/images
  • The possibility of change and turning inside to look at our emotions – through mind transformation
  • Brain plasticity and how it can change
  • A little bit of brain research and compassion
  • Mind training matters – the way our mind functions ultimately determines the quality of our experience in life.

“Mind training is based on the idea that two opposite mental factors cannot happen at the same time. You could go from love to hate. But you cannot, at the same time – toward the same object, the same person – want to harm and want to do good.” ~ Matthieu Ricard

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