TOPIC: Thousands of candles can be lighted from a single candle, and the life of the candle will not be shortened. Happiness never decreases by being shared.” – Buddha
Perhaps these are among the wisest words I have come across in decades. Studies show that a laugher a day can gradually increase one’s lifespan. Of course, this is one of the most popular known fact in the world. Imagine being the reason why someone’s life was extended by a day or a week? Isn’t that an exciting thing? Although this quote could be mistaken for a simple statement, a more in-depth look into the actual meaning reveals some exciting findings. Come to think of it: If you wanted to light ten candles, wouldn’t be easier for you just to light one and then use it to light the others rather than trying to light each candle individually? Well, I believe this is a rhetorical question so I won’t be delving deeper into the specifics of the expected answers. While this statement could be interpreted literally and figuratively, I believe the initial intention was the figurative interpretation. That said, perhaps we should look at the two interpretations and then compare them for clarity.
Let’s first begin with the literal meaning. Literally, when you use a candle to light others, there won’t be any adverse effect on its lifespan. I mean, if a candle is intended to last for one hour while burning, using it to light other candles won’t even reduce its lifespan by a second. So, from a literal point of view, the candle will have assisted others while at the same time losing nothing! So, in actual sense, it will have served a higher purpose than the intended one at a zero loss.
As for the figurative aspect, what this quote emphasizes is the fact that we need to share happiness with others since it will cost us nothing. In most cases, you find people who are self-centered and have no intentions of putting a smile on people’s faces even when doing so would not cost them a dime. This is a bizarre approach to life, and in most cases, one ends up being sad and lonely even after they have achieved everything they ever needed in life.
One thing we all need to understand is the fact that some of the things we think are essential turn out to be the opposite once you have them. Take a case of someone who had no time for friends and always spent his/her life chasing their dreams. When they finally achieve what they had been looking for, they will most likely realize how much they had lost in the process since they won’t have friends to share the happy moments with.
To drive the point home, perhaps I could share a story I once came across and found it quite amazing. If you aren’t conversant with the story of the flame and the fly, then keep reading since I will offer a summary of what happened.
You know flies and several other insects love light, right? Well, there once existed a fly and a candle which was lit. Now, this fly was attracted to this candle, and all that mattered to her was just the candle. She had no time for other things since, according to her, all she needed in life is the candle.
Unfortunately, as time passed, the fly hadn’t thought of the fact that the candle would soon burn out. And yes, although the fly had left all her friends and built her world around the flame, the candle was growing smaller with each passing minute. Now you know where this is headed! After a few hours of being at the top of the world, the time came for the fly to face some troubles. She noticed the flame was slowly fading and she started to panic. This was the moment she wished she had her friends around but it was too late since the friends were nowhere to be seen. At the end of the day, although the fly thought she only needed a candle and nothing else, she came to realize that her friends would be there for her even when the candle is no more! Of course, this is a common narrative across the globe which simply emphasizes the fact that we should never let anything seem too special to use that we forget about our friends and families. Although it might seem a little diverted from the initial statement, they both share a common focal point of how significant it is for one to have people around themselves.
Have ever wondered why people who give and put smiles on the faces of those who have challenges lead a better life than those who don’t? The problem with most of us is the fact that we think the only way to share happiness with others is through the use of money. In fact, I have come across people who claim they have nothing to do for the sick, those in prison and the less-privileged in the society simply because they don’t have money. I think that’s a lame reason!
You don’t necessarily require money to be able to share happiness with your friends or people who really need it. There’re so many things which mean a lot more than money in the world. For instance, perhaps you could visit the sick and keep them company. Or, maybe, you could dedicate a day to go to visit orphans and spend a day with them. These two scenarios didn’t require money yet you would still put a smile on someone’s face. And, what exactly would you lose if you dedicated a day to share happiness with others? Nothing!
The bottom-line is: Happiness shared doesn’t depreciate! On the contrary, putting a smile on someone else’s face considerably multiplies the happiness you already exuded. Of course, this isn’t scientific but an observation I have made after personally dedicating my time to making others happy. So, feel challenged to make others happy and perhaps you’ll increase your life.
In conclusion, it’s everyone’s responsibility to spread love and happiness all over the world. It starts with me, and you and then all the other people join the wagon. So, in your simple ways, you need to try and make others happy since you lose nothing. I mean, you don’t need to have cash or be wealthy to share happiness with others. Using simple ways like sharing time with people could help share happiness all over the world. From today onwards, make it your responsibility to ensure the people around you are happy. This statement is crystal clear and is meant to encourage us to stay happy and share happiness since we lose nothing!