A woodcutter believed best results are obtained by working hard, so he worked hard every day. The first day he cut ten trees, the second day nine trees but the third day he could cut only eight trees. At the end of the week, he could cut hardly one tree despite the same six hours of hard work. Perplexed, he approached a wise man and asked him the reason. The wise man replied, “More than hard work, what is crucial is smart working. Have you sharpened the saw ? ——You have to learn to work smart, more than hard work. The brain, for ages, has been programmed wrongly, it has positioned the future to e your saviour. Hence, people think and believe, “If I get million dollars, I will become happy.” So your saviour seems to be I the future. The description of time is past, present and future. But the ‘truth of time’ is ‘present’. Past was present, future will be present. Hence, the truth of time is present. If you do not know how to be happy NOW, you can never be happy. If the brain says, I will be happy in the future, it is silently saying, I am unhappy now. With such programming, when it gets the object of desire, it is experienced in the ‘present’, when the present has been programmed as ‘I am unhappy now’. So, despite getting what you want, you are unhappy.
You have to learn to be happy now in the present and “out of happiness”, you have to get the object of desire and not “for happiness” This is “smart living”. You have to bring in the power of ‘being’ and not get lost to the power of ‘becoming’. The power of ‘being’ is I am happy ‘now’ and the power of ‘becoming’ is I will become happy if I get this or that.
You have to look deeply into your life. The ‘becoming’ which appears to have brought a lot of growth in the form of development ——- has it given fulfilment ? Despite achievements, there is no fulfilment. All growth is oriented towards fulfilment. When you position happiness in the future, there will be no fulfilment. So ‘becoming’ has not really given what is needed —– fulfilment. Be happy now and out of joy, go about getting what you want. Get not “for joy” but “out of joy”.
Then your work is going to be fun, your life is going to be a joy. For joy is in the “here and now” and not in the future. The ‘will of wish’ makes you live for fantasy, but the ‘will of comprehension’ makes you see the fullness of the here and now.
Understand that wishing to be happy in the future is different from ‘willing to comprehend the now’ ——- what the “now” is. Once this change happens, then life is always in the now. An appreciable revolution happens to the brain. This is “smart living”.
—– Swami Sukhabodhananda.