A great blog post in the New York Times by Buddhist author Daniel Goleman about the young Tibetan master Yongey Mingyur Rinpoche, who has been dubbed the happiest man in the world (apparently it’s no longer fellow Buddhist Matthieu Ricard). Does sustained meditation practice really produce happiness? What is happiness anyway? If you want to listen to my recent interview with Mr. Goleman on the I.D. Project podcast, please visit the Interdependence Project here.
The discussion reminded of my own main Buddhist teacher, Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche, who I have never seen in a bad mood. The dude is not a big guy, but when he smiles, it’s about seven feet wide. In my experience, the answer to the question “does meditation produce happiness?” is a resounding yes, but you have to do the practice for a long time, for short daily periods, with good mentorship to see results. You also need to go on occasional mediation retreats. You also have to direct your intention beyond yourself, which is a bit of an apparent contradiction.
Has meditation made you happier? If so, how? If not, what are your obstacles?