Welcome to another reminder of what’s important: Enjoyment. Which isn’t to say that this about an enjoyment of a superficial sort. Far from it. Something deeper and significant is available to you. The enjoyment espoused here ripples outward. It’s an immersion.
Enjoyment focused on self-interests, cravings, successes and outlooks is like a chunk of fools gold. Egotistical pseudo-enjoyment is pyrite enjoyment.
So put on your old philosophical shoes (the ones that disappear in wearing), lighten up and sing Broncho’s, “Chill down, I’m doing great. Doing well is pretty vague” (Class Historian).
Let the sun shine. Walk a thin line. There’s gotta be rain some time. The perfect situation is rarely realized when you have expectations.
A philosophy of enjoyment is about getting out of your way to enjoy rare moments when there are no threats or demands on you, when your body is comfortable, when cravings are still and passions go quiet.
In such moments of contentment you merge with natural things like trees, geese… a lake. Imagine being deep down looking up at the surface. The waves may be rough, but it doesn’t matter to you in the serenity of the bottom.
From this depth of mind you look upward and simply enjoy observing emotions, happenings and memories rocking above.
We normally see our world as objects and individualized things – this person, that person; this table; that tree; that squirrel climbing. These individual beings have their own characteristics of size, shape and colour; they may be hot or cold, quiet or noisy, still or in motion and so on but… what if…
What if there is only one substance and it’s infinite? Think about it metaphorically. Imagine that everything is of one substance like an ocean without boundaries and individual beings or “things” are like waves. Each wave has its shape for a time, but the wave is not separate from the ocean. A wave can’t exist independently of the ocean.
There are two ways to look at life in the world. You can see life in egotistical terms from the limited point of view of self-motivations (as in: “Me! Me! Me! Give me! I want! I need!) or you can see the big picture and look at things globally and eternally.
Our senses pull us towards a time-bound partial view but reason and intelligence in harmony with sensual awareness can actually give you access to another perspective. It can allow you to participate in an eternal totality (Spinoza).
We call “bad” what is bad for us and “good” what increases our advantage but to be ethical you rise above local concerns to become aware of relationships. Likewise, lasting happiness lies in aligning your will with everything around you.
Pure enjoyment is rooted to a life based in freedom from guilt, from sorrow, from pity and shame.
The wise person understands how and why things are. Everything has its complexities. It’s your job to try and understand. Wisdom lies not in protesting how things are but in attempting to understand the ways of the world and then, to bow peacefully to necessity.
The wise person sees not just from local eyeballs but from a non-locality imagined in the big picture like a curious satellite or hovering thought. Uncritical satisfaction with eternity is the spirit of enjoyment.
Anger is controlled by taking the time to consider that life isn’t supposed to be as we expect it to be (Seneca). Dogs on a leash strangle themselves fighting against constraints but we have reason. We can feel happier knowing how to act freely within the length of our leashes ascribed by the universe.
Enjoyment. What is it? “A feeling of pleasure caused by doing or experiencing something you like” (Merriam-Webster). Easy. It’s a good feeling. Simple. Go with it. It’s a, “I know it when I feel it!” kind of thing.
It’s a bit like gardening. You prepare the soil. Plant the seed. Water and sun. Let nature take its course. Hope for the best. You create the circumstances, have faith, and get out of the way.
The list of things to enjoy is endless. You can enjoy a hot beverage, a vacation, the beach, friends, playing Parcheesi after a shot of heroin while wearing yellow but profound enjoyment doesn’t happen according to individual parts. It emerges like a flock of birds.
The whole is greater than the sum of its parts. Enjoyment depends on the relationships of the parts – one to another – but it can’t be predicted by examining the parts. It’s about relationships.
Having good relationships is a strong predictor of happiness (The Cultural Animal: Human Nature, Meaning and Life). Being alone is good, but being together now and again is better.
You are an emergent enjoyment as in Manfred Mann’s Earth Band song, “You are – you are -you are (fading). The eye glass of the nearly, nearly blind. You are the foot print in the sand of Easter Island. You are – you are – you are (fading). The fusion in the furnace of the sun” (You Are – I Am).
Have faith. Enjoyment is there. It’s just a matter of being aware.