Nutshell: Our default setting is “Happy.” We came into this world Happy. We were not afraid, we did not judge ourselves or other people— or anything in the universe. We were One With It All. Enlightened. Gurus. But instead of people worshipping at our feet and begging us to teach them how to be so happy, they were determined to teach us to be afraid. It was the only way they could control us. They judged us, told us what was good and bad behavior; right and wrong thoughts; acceptable and non-acceptable ways of being. They domesticated us, just like a new puppy. Of course, they were teaching us what they had been taught, and rarely noticed that it was all totally arbitrary and had nothing to do with any reality. It was not their fault, they were not bad or evil, just unconsciously passing down the traditions.

Everyone, in every family, every country, every culture, every religion teaches different rights and wrongs. Even two parents in the same family can have two totally different “dreams” of what we should be and how we should act. Much of it is based on them looking good, because they judge themselves as parents and are afraid of other people judging them if they don’t teach their children good manners, etc.

So. . .when we are judged, by others or by ourselves, we are victims of that judgment. Our energy goes down, and our strategies for acceptance and approval go up. When we are victims, we are not happy. I call that state, “Suffering.” As victims we feel powerless (more fear). So we have two choices— in my simple outline— happiness or suffering.

Almost everyone is secretly or not so secretly suffering. We do our best to hide our fear of being judged and rejected by others, while we are busy judging and rejecting ourselves in our own minds. We create masks, adaptations, strategies, roles— all to hide the unacceptable human we believe ourselves to be. It all makes for rather humorous dating!

The Key to Happiness? Stop judging. Simple, heh? Return to your default state, of acceptance and oneness with creation. Know that you are not defective, that you have nothing to hide, that you are a unique expression of the Divine, the first and only human like this in the entire history of this universe, and the last one. You are unique and that means there can be no authority inside or out that has any power to say you should be different than you were sent here to be. It is a powerful awakening, and only takes that one shift of belief. From: “I am not OK the way I am and have to hide who my inner judge says I am while I try to prove to other people that I am not that so they will accept me and give me love, approval, acceptance, safety, or a raise. “ . . .To: “I am a perfect expression of the Divine just the way I am. I am grateful for the talents, skills, challenges that I have been given as this human, and will do my best to manifest and share them as an expression of my gratitude to the Divine for this life.”

THAT is happiness. We are not judging our bodies, our hair, our mannerisms, our weight, age, wrinkles, inexperience, how we dance, education— no judgments. We are not judging each other, the weather, politicians, sports teams, wars, or God. We are accepting What IS. As it IS. It leads to a deep peace and happiness that is not dependent on the ways of the world. No person or institution gives it to you and no one can take it away from you. I call that deep peace “happiness.” It is the way we came into this world, and the way I intend to go out. In the deep peace of acceptance of this beautiful universe just the way it is.

NOTE: Accepting the perfection does not mean Liking It. If someone is abusing you, it is possible to see and accept the perfection of how they are dreaming you and their day— but it does not mean you are a doormat. If your human self does not like something, you move away from it, protect yourself, or whatever is required— out of love and acceptance for yourself and your truth, but not in judgment of the other person as Bad or Wrong or Defective.

Make sense?

Author's Bio: 

Allan Hardman is a relationship coach, author, teacher, and Toltec Master, trained by Miguel Ruiz in the tradition The Four Agreements. He teaches in Sonoma County, CA, and guides “Journeys of the Spirit” to sacred sites and tropical beaches in Mexico and beyond. He is the author of The Everything Toltec Wisdom Book, and co-author of two books with Deepak Chopra and others. For information about his work with The New Relationship, spiritual coaching, journeys, and to subscribe to his free e-newsletter, Or call (707) 528-1271. E-mail comments: