Manifesto Kasenenganku

Hugh MacLeod at GapingVoid.com had a great post today asking folks for their ‘manifestos'. Thanksgiving inspired me to write mine on happiness. Here's what I wrote and what Hugh posted (with a couple grammatical edits and Hugh's wonderful illustration!):

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Budaya kita kebanjiran pesen sing nggawa kita ngrusak dalan. Rasa seneng dipadhakake karo barang sing ora duweni… mobil, dhuwit, abs 6-pack, penghargaan, gaya hidup, utawa mung mung soda. Kawruh dipadhakake karo bandha, sanajan akumulasi utawa warisan. Iki minangka penyakit budaya kita, njamin manawa kita ora nate cukup pinter, ora cukup sugih, ora nate cukup.

Media nyenengake kita karo crita babagan kekayaan, jinis, kriminal, lan kekuwatan - kabeh perkara sing bisa nyebabake kita utawa wong liya yen kakehan. Pamrentah malah melu nyalahake, nggawe lotre. Saben pesen pemasaran lan kabeh iklan padha, "Sampeyan bakal seneng nalika".

We are not happy with our spouses, so we get divorced. We're not happy with our homes, so we relocate our families and buy bigger until we can't afford them. We shop until our credit is used up and we go bankrupt. We are not happy with our jobs, so we join in hurtful politics to try to accelerate our promotions. We're not happy with our employees so we hire new ones. We're not happy with our profits, so we let faithful employees go.

We are a culture of individuals who are told that hording is the best path to happiness. The grass is always greener – the next girlfriend, the next home, the next city, the next job, the next drink, the next election, the next, next, next… We are never taught to be happy with what we have now. We must have it, and have it now. That's when we'll be happy.

Since it's only possible for the selected few to have it all, the bar is always higher than we can reach. We can never achieve happiness as defined by our culture. How do we cope? We medicate. Illicit drugs, alcohol, prescription medications, tobacco are all necessary and popular since they take the edge off of our unfulfilled lives.

Sejatine, kita ana ing ndhuwur jagad. Kita minangka pimpinan sukses kanthi kabeh unsur sukses sing bisa diukur budaya. Kita duwe tentara sing paling kuat, sumber daya alam sing paling apik, ekonomi paling gedhe, lan wong sing paling apik tenan.

Nanging, kita durung seneng.

Don't rely on anyone or anything outside your own self to drive your happiness. It is up to no one but you. When you own your happiness no one can steal it, no one can buy it, and you don't have to look elsewhere to find it. But you can give some away anytime you would like!

God bless you and yours this fantastic Thanksgiving! Thanksgiving is 1 day out of a year. Perhaps we should have “Self-giving” and reverse our calendar. Let us spend the rest of the year being happy with what we have and one day spoiling ourselves with what we don't have. Let us be happy with our family, our children, our home, our job, our country and our lives.

Sampeyan bakal seneng ... yen sampeyan nemu rasa seneng.

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