Contrary to what your culture and religion have taught you, nothing—but absolutely nothing of the world—can make you happy. The moment you see that, you will stop moving from one job to another, one friend or lover to another, one place, one spiritual technique, one guru to another. None of these things can give you a single minute of happiness. They can only offer you a temporary thrill, a pleasure, that initially grows in intensity then turns into pain if you lose them and boredom if you keep them.
Think of the numberless persons and things that so excited you in the past. What happened? In every single instance, they ended up causing you suffering or boredom—did they not? It is absolutely essential that you understand this because, until you do, there is no question of your ever finding the Kingdom of Joy.
Search within your heart, and you will find something there that will make it possible for you to understand—a spark of disenchantment and discontent. If fanned into flame, it will become a raging forest fire that will burn up the whole of the illusory world you are living in, thereby unveiling to your wondering eyes the kingdom that you have always unsuspectingly lived in.
People have a vague idea as to what this thing is, and they read books and consult gurus in an attempt to find out what they must do to gain that elusive thing called Holiness or Spirituality. They pick up all sorts of methods, techniques, spiritual exercises, and formulas. Then, after years of fruitless striving, they become discouraged and confused and wonder what went wrong. Most often, people blame themselves. They think, “If I’d only practiced those techniques more regularly, or, if I had been more fervent or more generous, then I might have made it.” But made what? They have no clear idea as to what the holiness or enlightenment that they seek is—but they certainly know that their lives are still unhappy. They still become anxious, insecure, and fearful; resentful and unforgiving; grasping, ambitious, and manipulative of people. Once again, they throw themselves with renewed vigor into what that they think they need to do to fix themselves and attain their goal.