HOW CAN WE BE HAPPY ?
Once a group of 50 people was attending a seminar.
Suddenly the speaker stopped and decided to do a group activity. He started giving each one a balloon. Each one was asked to write his/her name on it using a marker pen. Then all the balloons were collected and put in another room.
Now these delegates were let in that room and asked to find the balloon which had their name written, within 5 minutes. Everyone was frantically searching for their name, colliding with each other, pushing around others and there was utter chaos.
At the end of 5 minutes no one could find their own balloon.
Now each one was asked to randomly collect a balloon and give it to the person whose name was written on it.
Within minutes everyone had their own balloon.
The speaker began— exactly this is happening in our lives. Everyone is frantically looking for happiness all around, not knowing where it is.
Our happiness lies in the happiness of other people. Give them their happiness; you will get your own happiness.
And this is the purpose of human life.
Happy Birthday, Amin Maalouf, born 25 February 1949
- A life spent writing has taught me to be wary of words. Those that seem clearest are often the most treacherous.
- When faced with a chaotic and convoluted situation, one always thinks that it will take centuries to sort it out. Suddenly a man appears and as if by magic, the tree we thought was doomed takes on new life and starts bearing leaves and fruits and giving shade.
- I come from no country, from no city, no tribe. I am the son of the road… all tongues and all prayers belong to me. But I belong to none of them.
- Doctrines are meant to serve man, not the other way around.
- You can’t say history teaches us this or that; it gives us more questions than answers, and many answers to every question.
Maalouf is a Lebanese-born French author. He received the Prix Goncourt in 1993 for his novel The Rock of Tanios. He was elected to the Académie française on 23 June 2011.