the causes of happiness
Real rain on actual garden greens: it’s like the reality show called “sometimes it rains in Southwest Colorado, and oh how we rejoice.”
It’s cloudy and drizzly, which makes everyone extraordinarily happy here in the Southwest. It’s like some scene from the Twilight Zone: rain is pouring slantingly from metal-grey clouds and everywhere you go, people say, what a lovely spring day! Even Rose, who is more in tune with say, current footwear fashion, walked outside this morning and said, “it smells so good, like fresh air and rain.”
Also, the fruit trees are blooming—pear, apple, crabapple, peach, plum—which, though it lasts maybe 2 weeks, I’ve come to think of as a season. The season of blooming fruit trees. There are so many fruit trees in our town, you could follow them on foot, zig-zagging from bloom to bloom like a honey bee or a spiritual seeker devoted to ephemeral beauty.
Last night at the Durango Dharma Center, our teacher, Katherine Barr, recited a Buddhist blessing titled, The Four Immeasurables, one line of which is: may all beings have happiness and the causes of happiness.
Sometimes I get confused about the causes of happiness. They’re not always what they appear to be, though it seems any hope preceded by the words “perfect,” “always,” or “more” is a set up, as in: happiness will come when I have perfect health, always feel calm, or have more money. Sometimes I find myself pursuing what I want blindly with arms outstretched and grabbing, thinking this is the key to happiness, while missing anything and everything worthwhile in the process. I forget that chasing happiness is like trying to catch dandelion seeds in the wind. The causes of happiness are always here, just waiting patiently to be noticed. Like a blooming fruit tree in May.