In a society, where we are indoctrinated in the principle of “no pain, no gain”, and which places more importance on sacrifice than joy-orientedness, it’s difficult for the mind to imagine that it can be aligned with pleasure and be a beneficiary of life’s abundance. And yet, the principle of creation in this universe is “attraction”, so if you want to attract joy you need to be aligned with joy/pleasure, there is no getting around this truth and if there is a part of your mind that feels alarmed, or guilty, at the very thought of being pleasure oriented, it just shows how rooted in fear you really are. You were born joyful, it’s only as you grew up that you learnt to curb your natural instinct towards your pleasure and started taking on conditioning rooted in fear, guilt, lack and self-hatred.
However, in an unconscious state of being everything turns into an addiction because there is an absence of maturity and wisdom (which can only come from a place being aligned with your inner wholeness). To be pleasure oriented in an unconscious state of being can soon turn into craving, which obviously leads to pain/suffering creating an imbalanced reality. The problem is not with being pleasure oriented, but with looking to the pleasures to give you an inner sense of wholeness. Physicality can give you enjoyment/pleasure, but it cannot give you wholeness – you come to your wholeness when you recognize the space of your being. In the absence of this inner wholeness, being pleasure oriented can turn into an addiction, and lead to irresponsible and unwise behaviors. So in this post, when I am talking about being pleasure oriented, the pre-requisite is that you be first rooted in your inner wholeness (so that you are not moving from a place of craving).
Addiction to pleasure vs Conscious alignment with pleasure
To consciously align with pleasure is a very powerful state of being, and this is only possible when you are rooted in your inner wholeness and are aligned with the natural make-up of your mind. When you are connected with your inner wholeness, there is a space of wisdom and guidance operating in your life, and there is also a conscious maturity that keeps you from being “volatile” (where you are pleasure oriented one day and lost in depression the next). Actually, when you are aligned with your inner wholeness it’s natural to be oriented towards joy on the outside, in fact you become an expression of joy/peace on a consistent basis (not in an obnoxious or careless manner, but in a very wholistic manner).
In the absence of inner wholeness, it’s very easy to become addicted to a source of pleasure and thus become a prisoner to it. Basically when you are pleasure oriented without being rooted in your inner wholeness, there is an imbalance that comes in because of a lack of wisdom and maturity – this imbalance always takes the shape of craving and addiction. You can become a prisoner to pleasure as much as you can become a prisoner to emotional pain, all these are imbalanced states of being when one is not rooted in his/her inner wholeness (in the absence of awareness, being lost in mind identification).
Life is always inviting you to be joy oriented
Why would you make a choice in the direction of quitting on your joy? Simply because of “fear” (no matter what your justification/excuse may be), there is no other reason a person would choose struggle over joy. The common excuse is “I need to struggle to earn a living, so I can’t be joy oriented”, and this is the very reason for all mediocrity that exists in this world. In truth, your true genius and creative potential can only come forth when you become joy oriented. There is nothing truer than the clichéd saying – “follow your joy and money will follow”, it’s just that very few have the courage to stay committed to their joy, most would rather compromise.
To be joy oriented is challenging when the whole society seems to be rooting for suffering, where someone who is joy oriented is immediately labeled as being selfish (especially by people who are rooted in identification with suffering). This causes the mind to shy away from being oriented towards its joy and become oriented towards struggle. The very notion of being joy oriented is frowned upon in many misguided religious teachings where we are made to feel guilty/fearful of a judging God which is waiting to inflict its wrath on you if you don’t keep sacrificing yourself in someway. Also, this conditioning of being “struggle oriented” (or suffering oriented) starts early in the childhood when you are constantly programmed to be a narrow thinking, discipline oriented, “routing following” mechanical being. After years of being conditioned in a struggle oriented approach to life, it’s hardly a surprise that people find it boggling to imagine that being joy-oriented is what aligns them with their life stream.
The invitation from life is for you to always follow your joy, it’s upto you whether you take up this invitation or not. When you are truly aligned with your happiness, pleasure or joy (in a conscious way) you are totally aligned the well-being inherent to your life stream and hence are automatically privy to security and stability (that gets manifested in your external reality). When you are joy oriented, while being aligned with your inner wholeness, your body feels enriched and alive every moment, because it’s not in resistance to life energy, and thus it’s in the perfect condition to attract wellness and health.