Message of Faith – No One Else Can Make You Happy

This weeks Message of Faith submitted by Rev. Joanne Rowden

Rev. Joanne Rowden
Rev. Joanne Rowden

No One Else Can Make You Happy

As we continue in our study of Don Miguel Ruiz’s book, The Mastery of Love, you were tasked last week with the challenge to do something each day that brought you happiness and was not dependent upon anyone else. In the book, Ruiz tells us, “If you are aware that no one else can make you happy, and that happiness is the result of love coming out of you, this becomes the greatest mastery of the Toltecs, the Mastery of Love.” As you and I enter into the art of relationship, this idea helps us to accept full responsibility for our experience rather than placing blame on another for any lack we might be experiencing.

It is quite likely that you and I have expectations in our relationship with others. I might expect you to be kind, considerate, understanding, or appreciative. If you do not meet those expectations, it is easy for me to fall into a place of victimhood and blame. My own personal “poison” begins to create monkey mind thoughts of self-pity. Before I know it, I’ve forgotten the truth of my being, and as taught by Unity, that God is the Source of my good, and not anything outside of me.

compassion-webRuiz tells us that in the practice of love, pity is different than compassion. Pity is disrespectful whereas compassion is respectful. In looking at the etymology of the word pity we find it to mean feel responsible for. When I pity someone, I begin to feel responsible for their feelings. I often move into a place of fixing them or the situation. I rush in and give advice. The etymology of the word compassion means to suffer or endure with. In compassion, I simply sit with the other in their feelings without feeling the burden of responsibility to personally make it better. Respect literally means to look back. What am I looking back at when I am in a place of compassion or pity? With pity, I am looking back at the other as though there is something wrong. With compassion, I am looking back at the other knowing their Divine whole and holy self which has the wisdom, intelligence and imagination to meet this moment with ease and grace. I may still be spurred to action in compassion, but it is in supporting you in revealing the possibility of the moment and not fixing what I think is wrong in the moment.

Jesus taught us that he came to fulfill the law. The fulfillment of the law is the restoration of the Kingdom of God here on earth. He also told us that the law was based on two simple commandments: Love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul and mind; and love your neighbor as yourself. Finally, he gave us the prescription for these two commandments: Do unto others as you would have others do unto you. This Golden Rule is found in every spiritual tradition. It is at the heart of the mastery of love and the living of a compassionate life. In order to live this Golden Rule idea, you must become aware of when you have moved from the center of the heart into a reaction of needing the other or the situation to be different.

Throughout each day become aware of the actions that you are taking. Are your actions causing happiness or suffering? When you become aware that your action is causing suffering, shift your attention by taking a breath, focus your attention on the area of your heart, and make a sincere attempt to experience a positive emotion like gratitude or caring for someone or something in your life. (Based on the Quick Coherence Technique from the HeartMath Institute).

Abundant peace and blessings… Rev. Joanne


Rev. Joanne Rowden
Rev. Joanne Rowden

Rev. Joanne Rowden is the senior minister at Unity Spiritual Center in Westlake, OH. She served as the minister at Unity in Edinboro for 13 years before taking on this new position on November 1, 2014. She lives in Hinckley, OH with her husband.

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