Tuesday, June 28, 2011


www.lonelyplanet.com - Smile and the world smiles with you. Test it out in these destinations, taken from Lonely Planet’s 1000 Ultimate Experiences.  Vanuatu:  Many a human’s idea of blissful living involves swinging in a palm-strung hammock while the ocean swooshes gently onto a white-sand beach nearby. Montréal, Québec, Canada:  Clean, welcoming and refreshingly multicultural, Montréal is happy enough year-round.  Happy, Texas, USA:  This is the self-proclaimed ‘town without a frown’. The tiny Lone Star State settlement of Happy is a frankly disappointing collection of silos and gridded streets.  Bhutan: Monasteries held to cliffs by the hairs of angels and a complete absence of traffic lights - what’s not to be cheerful about in Bhutan?  Colombia:  Whether it’s the coffee beans or the Carnival atmosphere, it buzzes with Latin high spirits 24/7.

Wuyi Shan, China:  The building of the Tian XingYong Le (the Ever-Happy Temple) is perpetually cheerful.  Malawi:  This is the ‘warm heart of Africa’. The country’s people are renowned for the effusive welcome they give travelers.  Andorra:  There you can enjoy outdoorsy fun: skiing in winter, hikes and off-road cycling come summer.  Hidakagwa, Wakayama, Japan:  Offers the Warai (Laughing) Festival in October when infectious good humour spilling all the way to goddess Niutsuhime no mikoto’s shrine.  Denmark:  It is the world’s most contented country.  It’s easy to see why: standards of living are sky-high.

This article from the popular travel guide "Lonely Planet" reports on sites considered the happiest in the world, for being almost unknown, small and quiet locations.  In these places the emphasis is put on social services, hospitality, friendship, solidarity and smiles.  People want to get away from the stress of big cities by traveling to remote places, thinking that there they will find the peace that can not find in their inner selves.  No material happiness or realization of Impersonal Brahman can be compared to the happiness of attain the direct vision and realization of Isvara or Personal Divinity.
So it is said in the Tantra: Exceptionally wonderful supernatural powers, long-enduring worldly and heavenly pleasures, long and lasting experiences of Mukti as Brahmasukha (felicity derived from knowledge and realization of impersonal Brahman), and eternal and ever-progressive and supreme flow of transcendental felicity (from realization of the Supreme Lord) are attainable by Bhakti in Lord Govinda (Krishna), who is the Lord of all the senses.  ... Even with the slightest awakening of Bhava-Bhakti in the heart for the Lord, the four objects of human pursuit, viz. Dharma (relative duties offering heavenly pleasures), Artha (mundane wealth), Kama (sensual pleasures or desires), and Moksa (final emancipation or realization of the self as identical with Brahman) become insignificant and as worthless as a straw.

Śrīla Bhakti Hridaya Bon (Vana) Mahārāja :
Transliteration and English Translation with Comments of
Śrī Rupa Goswami’s “Bhakti-Rasamrta-Sindu”
“Eastern Division of the Ocean:  First Wave” Texts 31 and 33
http://bvml.org/SHBM/brs4.html - Bhaktivedanta Memorial Library

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