You need to be happy, and not secure, to live fully

Between being happy and being secure, choose being happy. Because security is fake and guarantees nothing except consoling you that you are safe, despite the fact that you are not.
You are as safe as you are in this moment. You will never be able to tell, ever, what will happen to you, of you, in the next moment. You, like many, will be rushing this morning to work at a job that you loathe, yet you cling on to it because of a fake sense of security your pay check guarantees you. You think you are secure if you have money, if you have a social standing, if you have a well-heeled job and if you have a house to call your own. Security comes from comforting yourself with how much you have. Happiness comes from being content with whatever you have.
The problem with seeking too much security is that what you try to possess will eventually end up possessing you. If you have a million dollars in the bank and have lost your job, invariably every thought of yours will concern your depleting the bank balance with every delay that your job search encounters. Clearly, the bank balance is possessing you now. On the other hand, if you want to be happy, all you need to do is to consider yourself lucky that you have a bank balance to live off in the time that you search for a job.
On a spiritual plane, it is also really foolish on our part that we should feel insecure. Because from the time you were born, you have lived each moment without knowing what will happen in the next. Which means you are an expert at dealing with the unknown, with insecurity. Yet, you fear it all the time? Life is a bungee jump into the unknown in each new moment. And all of us have been doing it effectively, efficiently all these years of our lives. So, a sense of security is a wasted sentiment. You don’t need it to live. You can live with insecurity, as you always have. Happiness however is crucial to live Life fully! If you have felt an emptiness, an incompleteness in you, it is not because you are insecure, but because you are not happy!

Happiness is an opportunity that each moment is pregnant with. To be happy, you have to make a choice of letting go of the need to be secure. You will then be soaked in happiness!  
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Of freedom from insecurity

When you accept insecurity, it disappears.  
A friend called a couple of days ago. He is the head of operations for a multinational company. His company is very conservative and every single decision is controlled by the top management sitting in their global headquarters. My friend had over a decade built a reputation for himself within the company as a reliable and responsible manager. Therefore, he was allowed a higher degree of empowerment. He was, exceptionally, allowed to lead a couple of crucial processes in the India operation on his own. Which meant that he did not have to seek approvals for these processes from the top brass. But just this week, these processes too were taken over by senior managers at the corporate headquarters. My friend called me to seek my view on making sense of this development. “I am very uncomfortable that my empowerment is withdrawn. I have asked my boss why this has been done,” he told me. He was sounding very disturbed and the feeling I got was that he feared for his job. I told him: “You are feeling insecure. Which is natural. Accept your insecurity. Talk to your boss or senior manager and ask them upfront if the reason for this change has anything to do with their view of your efficiency as the process owner. If your insecurity persists, despite that conversation, go look for another job. If you get one that you like, move. If you don’t get one or don’t want to move even after getting another offer, at least you would have realized the value of  what you have on hand and you will be able to be more productive and efficient. Important, you will stop feeling insecure and disturbed.”
For various reasons, in myriad situations, each of us encounters insecurity. The best way to deal with insecurity is to accept that it is there.
Insecurity is a normal human response to situations that you can’t immediately make sense of. Metaphorically, you are groping in the dark. There is no light. Suddenly you feel lost. Lonely. You are filled with fear. What do you do? Well, you can shiver and shudder. You can cry in despair. But soon you realize that none of that can drive the darkness away. What you need is light – and you don’t have a source like a torch or a matchbox or such. So, when you understand and accept the hopelessness of the situation, when you embrace your insecurity, you will be able think with greater clarity.
When you think about Life deeply, you will recognize the truth that there is nothing called security. On the vast cosmic plane, the human being is as powerless as an ant is in front of humans. One event, and in under a moment, a Life is snuffed out. So what security are you and I seeking when we can never really escape the inevitable end, death? When you understand this quality – its impermanence – about Life, you will stop seeking security.
In the course of a lifetime, there will be a million, or more, occasions when you will feel insecure. Accept your insecurity every single time. When do that, your awareness, through your acceptance, will remind you each time that the security you crave for is a myth. Then insecurity will not hound and haunt you. You will be free from it. 

If you can’t avoid the rat race, at least enjoy the scenery!


We don’t have to wait for the big, dramatic, Life-changing moments alone to learn our lessons. Life offers a teachable point of view in each moment – all the time!

Yesterday I was in a long queue to clear security at the airport. The gentleman behind me, it appeared, was in a tearing hurry. He elbowed past me and even nudged his way ahead of the person in front of me. He did not stop at the yellow line and landed himself in front of the security officer even as the officer was frisking another passenger. The officer was, naturally, irritated and told Mr.Hurry to back off and return to the yellow line. But our man was not inclined to comply. He argued that he was tired of waiting in the queue. An altercation followed. The security supervisor arrived and demanded that the man step back. He physically escorted the man to the end of the mile-long queue! While many passengers smirked, giggled or shrugged their shoulders, the man’s sullen, grumpy look got me thinking.

Why do we hate queues? Aren’t we all in a perpetual queue__waiting to depart, ever since we arrived on the planet?

To be honest, I used to hate queues too. In the years I was a journalist, I would flaunt my “PRESS” identity card and get ahead of others in public places. I have argued with many a cop or officer, like Mr.Hurry, too. When I look back at those times, I do feel ashamed of my conduct. I have learned that getting ahead in Life does not mean elbowing people and being impatient. In fact, many a time, I have wondered what’s the big hurry, the rush? Think about it. Everybody around us is running faster and faster, edging past others, wanting to be the first one to complete the rat race. And then do what? Many people still don’t understand that at the end of the rat race we will still be rats! In wanting to get ahead, beat the queue, be the first to arrive, we are missing the scenery! Life’s beauty, its magic, is not simply in arriving at any point__it really is in enjoying the scenery too. I have, over the years, found that queues are a great place to meditate, to drop anchor, to go within and connect with the source. It’s the time to revisit and relearn patience. It’s when you can reflect on the inscrutable nature of Life!

Jetsun Milarepa, the 12th Century, Tibetan Buddhist monk has said it so beautifully – “Hasten slowly and ye shall arrive!”. It means keep walking, keep running the rat race if you must, but enjoy the scenery too. Stop and smell the roses. And don’t worry about finishing. For we all must finish our pre-ordained tenure on the planet, every which way, and finally depart. So, next time you are in queue, and are beginning to lose your cool, breathe easy. Think of Mr.Hurry. Think of Milarepa! Enjoy the scenery!