Joy is synonymous with boundless. The power of letting go is entering a state of joy!
Once in a while I want to give my kids a great time and so you know what I do, I simply let go. I stop being the me that they know and I start doing surprising things, which I would describe as fun. And it’s fun for them, too. It’s fun because they no longer know what to expect, what’s going to happen, because I’m not being the me that they know. I’m not functioning, I’m not behaving in the predictable way that I typically do. And so I’ll yell out loud in front of a lot of other people or I’ll say things to strangers or I’ll grab them and I’ll do something wild. And all the while they’re begging me to stop embarrassing them and to just be normal. And all the while I know that they and I are both having a great time. And herein lies the great secret of joy. Joy is when we have a boundless experience, when we break out of our normal structure which limits us and we experience the sense of freedom from those limits.
Now, it’s not the freedom to be who we are but, ironically, it’s the ability to be free from who we are. It’s being free from who we are. We inherently have limitations. And when we free ourselves from those limitations which we can’t free ourselves from, we experience a sense of joy. Because joy is synonymous with boundless. The power of letting go is that it gives us the experience of joy. And the Talmud expresses this concept in this way: That there is no joy like the joy of being released from doubt.
You know how it is when we are not sure about something, what are we supposed to do, and it weighs on us and weighs on us? The moment we get clarity and we’re no longer stuck in the confusion of what to do, that experience of breaking out is how the Talmud gives us an example of what joy, what real true joy is.
When we’re confused and we’re unsure and then we reach that point of clarity, that release from being constrained and bound to the confusion is a state of joy. Why? Because we are no longer bound. We all have limitations. The things we like, the things we don’t. But God gifted us with a mind that can help us override those limitations, that can say, yes, you don’t like this but we can do it anyway. You do want this but we don’t need to do it anyway. And we have a soul that’s deeper than all of our limitations. And our mind is a tool that can help us experience our boundless soul instead of our limited body.
And this is the reason why no physical pleasure gives us true joy, it only gives us momentary pleasure. Pleasure is a feeling. It’s not a state of being like joy is. Joy is like a state of ‑‑ an entirely new state of being. And pleasure is also a very limited experience. And this is the reason why when we get a new car, it gets old very soon. In fact, it gets old just moments after we drive it off the lot. The delicious dinner we had last night does very little for us today. The massage, once it’s over, it is over. Pleasure is bound to time and location. It’s a limiting experience, which is exactly what joy is not. Because joy is boundless.
The exotic vacation that we took and we think about and we say, wow, that was the best vacation we ever had, when we go back and take that vacation again, for some reason the second time it never has that specialty that it had the first time. Why not? The reason why is because pleasure is temporary. It is fixed in time. The second time around it never has the same feeling. But joy can always be repeated and every time you get into a state of joy, it is the full boundless experience of joy.
So you can notice how people always make this comment about their joyous life cycle moments, such as their wedding or their children’s wedding or an experience like that where they will always say that my gosh, I can’t believe it’s over. Time never went so fast for me. I mean, I didn’t even ‑‑ I didn’t even know where it went, I just can’t believe it’s over. This is such a common comment that people make. Because when we’re in a state of joy, we’re above the limitation of time and we are not experiencing things in a conscious frame of time. And, therefore, we’re just in the moment and we have this boundless feeling of just great joy. And suddenly it’s over because we’re not experiencing it in time, we’re experiencing it beyond time.
And this is the beauty of singing in the rain. It’s the beauty of someone who is wearing a suit or a dress, they’re dressed up and it’s raining and they actually decide to walk outside in the rain and just stand in the rain and sing. And it’s such a crazy thing to do. But it’s also such a freeing thing to do. It’s just a way of saying, nothing is going to restrain me, nothing is going to limit me. And somehow the guy in his $500 or $3,000 suit or whatever it is, or dress, is standing in the rain singing and they’re happier than ever. And that’s because they are not constrained, they are not limited.
This is the power of being comfortable in our discomfort. And this is actually the secret to joy. That’s why when we make ourselves uncomfortable to do the right thing and the more we become comfortable in that discomfort, the more joy we bring into our lives. That’s why this is the key factor that makes people happy. When we inconvenience ourselves for others, it’s inconvenient but we’re saying the inconvenience is not going to limit me and I am going to deliberately inconvenience myself for the benefit of another person. That’s boundless.
When we are being more generous than those who have far more than us because we don’t judge generosity by our ability to give but we judge how generous we’re going to be by the other person’s need, no longer are we limited. Joy knows no bounds. This is the true definition of joy. This is why what we dedicate ourselves to has an enormous impact on how much joy we will have in our life. Are we dedicated to material pleasure? Are we dedicated to ourselves, to whatever will give more to me, or are we dedicated to boundless joy?
Making the conscious effort to be a more spiritual being will give us much greater joy in our lives and we will have much more heightened experiences of joy.
You know, we’re taught that it’s vitally important to live a joyous life because when someone is boundless in spirit, they are such a wonderful human being. We are so much more beautiful when we are in a state of joy and we get so much more accomplished because we are not limited in our minds. And so it is vitally important that we dedicate ourselves to experiencing real joy in our lives and that’s by making the conscious effort to be a more spiritual being and then we have more boundless joy.