Left the hideout of The S’Mores Gang at 6:45 and made great time to Crescent Lake, covering the 30 miles by 9:30. Bought food for dinner because I had 45 miles ahead, 23 on dirt, and most of it uphill to Windigo Pass. With almost zero phone bars I pulled over to feed the mosquitoes and write/upload a post.
One thing I have realized is that everyone has a right to be happy. You do, too. It is literally our birthright. Jefferson got it wrong, it’s not the pursuit of happiness to which we are entitled, but happiness itself.
I resisted this all my life, insisting that happiness wasn’t a state but merely a point that you experience briefly, after which you descend into the normal state of something-other-than-happiness.
But actually happiness is a state, albeit an elusive one. It is deeply connected with self-acceptance because only with that can you accept others. And “others” are the main source of your unhappiness, more specifically, your responsibility to them. As George the homeless guy said, “Most responsibilities are bad. A few make you a good person, but most don’t.”
For example, when you drive a car you become responsible to law enforcement, to insurance companies, to banks, to repair shops, to gas stations, and to the thousands of motorists you share the road with. Each of those people can mess with your happiness, and they do. Doubt me? Miss a payment. Get in a fender-bender. Sit in traffic …
But that is only one instance. Your life is apparelled with these and hundreds of other duties, most of which give no happiness and actively detract from the happiness you have.
No wonder I always thought happiness was a fleeting thing. It was!
You can find your path. It is staring you in the face and begging you to take it. What seem like thorns at the entrance are the fake responsibilities that will melt away in the purposefulness of your stride, or the cadence of your stroke.
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