Nearly all humankind is more or less unhappy, because nearly all do not know the true Self. Real happiness abides in Self-knowledge alone. All else is fleeting. To know one’s Self is to be blissful always.
~ Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi, the sage of Arunachala
APPROACHING ARUNACHALA – TIRUVANNAMALAI, SOUTH INDIA
I originally started the Happiness Project as a quest for true happiness and the holy grail of eternal bliss in 2003 in New York (way before the happiness craze and any New York Times bestsellers on the Subject). I ended up in India a year later with nothing but my video camera and a few personal possessions, as I adventured in search of the illustrious goal until spring 2005.
Here’s a fun clip from the video in India:
I think you can get a sense of the energy there…
Upon my return from India the world fell apart beneath my feet, compounded by the loss of my sister, Ananda Colombo, in a car accident in 2006. I spent a couple years scrambling to keep it all together, and eventually realized that it was far better to actually be in a state of grace than try to explain what a state of grace looked and felt like.
That’s when it all started to finally come together, leading to where you are now.
More of the incredible footage and interviews I captured from those earlier days of my journey will all eventually be revealed — much of it here — in due time. The original website (www.thehappinessproject.com) has been redirected to this site here at Fierce Wisdom.
From the Archives: I published this piece in October 2008, on my second trip to India. I think it captures the essence of the whole issue, and is surprisingly relevant to what I’m investigating now —
What does it mean to truly be a master of yourself?
That’s the question I’ve asked myself over and over since I met the tantric yogi master, Swami Amrit, who asked me the same question four years ago on my last visit to India. I think this last week I may have come up with the answer…
I’m writing from an internet shop in Pondicherry, India, drenched in cold sweat. The heat is syrupy and thick in the air, stifling any progress with the energetic pull of quicksand. The power is out again, it drops out intermittently day and night and everyone waits…we’re running on backup power now – any minute without warning the battery charge is finished and all systems are down. This is the tenuous nature of life here – the relentlessly stifling flow of time that forces me to reconsider the worthiness of just about every dream and goal I’ve ever considered undertaking.
I’ve been in India for a month and a half now – it’s taken me this long to just get to the point where I can begin to process this whole experience in a way that can reasonably be put into words. Here I begin to make an attempt at the endeavor: Continue Reading →