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shim Happiness & Altruism
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Many persons have a wrong idea of what constitutes true happiness. It is not attained through self gratification but through fidelity to a worthy purpose.  - Helen Keller

According to Stephen Post, co-author of Why Good Things Happen to Good People, there is a measurable link between doing good and living a longer, happier and healthier life. Dr. Mehmet Oz talked with Stephen, a bioethics professor at Case Western Reserve University and the president of the Institute for Research on Unlimited Love, about the connection between altruism and well-being.

Stephen says studies have shown that positive spiritual emotions such as gratitude, compassion and forgiveness create an internal harmony that brings joy and good health. "When we get in touch with this higher self and we cultivate it each day, it's tremendously good for the people around us, but it's wonderful for our own happiness and our own health and our own well-being," he says.

Part of this formula for happiness involves doing good to be good, rather than doing good with the expectation of getting something in return, Stephen says. "You shouldn't make your generosity dependent on an anticipated payoff," he says. "It's more of a side effect, or a byproduct, or an unintended after-effect of giving and generosity."

 

 



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shimUseful Service

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. . . from good will brings faith to life. 

It is the very heart of heavenly happiness.

Usefulness

We are on earth to learn to love and grow wise in love, and to act from that love by living a useful and productive life according to our own capabilities. When we do this, we not only receive the love of God, and all His blessings, but we return that love to God.  By doing this the Lord opens heaven within us and prepares us for an eternal life of ever growing love and happiness in heaven.

We are created to be of use. All things that have been created by the Lord are for the sake of some use.  The point of truth is to show us the things we must stop doing and the things we must begin doing to be of use.  When we do things that are useful to others, with no thought of reward or recognition, the Lord gives us a delight far surpassing any external reward. This is the same delight that the angels of heaven experience from the joy of use in heaven.  The greatest delight of angels is doing good with no thought of reward.

Parable of the Talents

The Lord gives charity and faith to everyone according to his abilities and state.  We are taught this truth in the Parable of the Talents (Matthew 25:14-30).  There, Jesus told His disciples of a man who entrusted three servants with large sums of money. Each was given a different quantity - according to his ability. After a long time, the master came back and inquired how they had used his money. Two wisely used the talents for trade and doubled the amount given to them. But the third servant had done nothing but bury the talent in the ground.

As with all of the Lord's parables, there is an inner meaning here. The talents symbolize the wealth of good and truth that the Lord gives to us. And just as the master goes far away for a long time, the Lord leaves us in freedom to use these gifts as we will.  The faithful servants are they who use these gifts wisely, serving or helping other people from love.  After death, they are received into heaven and enter into the joy of the Lord.  Those who waste their potential do not.

How can we be good and faithful servants of the Lord?  The Lord blesses us with spiritual freedom and the ability to learn and think.  In addition, He gives us a unique array of abilities, which gives each person the potential to serve the Lord and the neighbor in a special way.  When we speak of "talents" today, we mean the potential abilities we inherit and choose to develop.  The goal the Lord sets for us is to put our inborn talents and spiritual gifts to use in serving others and in living a good and productive life according to His Word.  In this way we will also be considered "good and faithful servants" and be welcomed to heaven, to enter into the joy of our Lord.


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