Sunday, December 21, 2014
In the Pursuit of Happiness
Both Catholic papers had a review of the new book by the Cardinal Emeritus of Seoul, Cheong Jin-suk: In Pursuit of Happiness. Cardinal Cheong has published a new book every year from the first year of his ordination on some aspects of spirituality. In the pursuit of happiness, it is necessary, he says to reflect each day on what we have done and continue to ask ourselves daily the important questions about life. We need to ask ourselves how are we reacting with those with whom we are living; we can't find happiness by ourselves.
The Cardinal seeks answers not only as an individual, but as a member of society and with a universal dimension. Because we are human we can change. When we become mindful of God's Providence all changes.
He wants us to ask: Who are we? The first fundamental question and secondly: Where are we going? The ultimate question about life. To stop with our parents is not sufficient when searching for why we are here, nor is it sufficient to see our end as returning to the earth. Before we die we have to find the answers to these questions.
We need to evaluate our lives, ascertain what are our values, educate our consciences, determine the meaning of freedom, and the root of sin. This is the first step. Secondly, we search for the common good, remember solidarity of the earth family, the need to communicate, basics of language and see our human life as a part of the extended family. The third section has to do with evolution and the place of God's providence
He sees the advance of science as a part God's providence and not as science opposed to theology. Creation did not begin with everything all complete but was to evolve in God's providence. When we consistently listen to the word of God and want to understand the word, we begin to experience God.
When we work to live in harmony with God's Providence we find happiness. We are weaving daily a tapestry; depending on how we are relating with those around us, giving them hope and joy or inflicting sadness or pain, will determine the kind of tapestry that we will present to God, and will determine the success we have made of the gift of life.