Buddhism is a religion that is strongly associated with happiness – just one look at a smiling Buddha statue is enough to show you that Buddhism is quite possibly one of the happiest religions.

Therefore, there is a lot to be learnt about happiness from Buddhist philosophies.

Read on to learn more about five Buddhist philosophies that can teach us about happiness.

Accept that life involves suffering

According to Buddhist philosophy, accepting that life involves suffering is crucial in the pursuit of happiness.

‘Dukkha’, which is the first Noble Truth, simply means ‘life is pain and causes suffering.’

Whilst this might seem like a rather pessimistic way to look at things, Buddhists believe it actually holds the key to happiness.

Instead of trying to avoid the difficult emotions that inevitably come with life, Buddhists believe that by accepting that suffering is a part of it, your life will instantly become happier.

Overcome negative thoughts

According to Tibetan Buddhism, mindful awareness is one of the keys to becoming truly happy.

By practicing meditation, Buddhists believe that we develop a greatest state of consciousness, and in turn overcome negative thoughts.

Meditation allows the self to become more centred and allows the mind to go to a place where it is no longer distracted by negative thoughts.

Connect with others

In Buddhism, community and connecting with the people around you is crucial to happiness.

The “Three Jewels” of Buddhism are made up of the Buddha (the example), the Dharma (the path) and the Sangha (the community), and therefore this tradition shows the sheer importance of community in order to live a happy life.

Buddhists are encouraged to connect with those around them in order to become happier.

Practice compassion

Practicing compassion or “loving kindness” is a key Buddhist philosophy, which promotes happiness.

Loving kindness has its own meditation within Buddhism, ‘metta bhavana’, which encourages you to send kindness to yourself and all those around you, including your enemies.

In Tibetan Buddhism, ‘tonglen’ is a meditation that involves breathing in suffering and breathing out happiness, to reduce the pain in the world and spread peace to all beings.

Embrace death

In Western culture, death is something that is feared greatly.

However, in Tibetan Buddhism, there is the philosophy that death should actually be embraced.

This is because it is seen as a ‘crowning achievement’ of a life that has been lived to the fullest.

Tibetan Buddhists believe that meditation can help us to accept the nature of life and death.

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