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Reflections: Happiness Is Life As A Lounging Cat…

28/01/2012

“I have noticed that what cats most appreciate in a human being is not the ability to produce food, which they take for granted – but his or her entertainment value.” Geoffrey Household

Reflections: Happiness Is Life As A Lounging Cat… Our happy cat…

Reflections: Happiness Is Life As A Lounging Cat…

Pinkle Purr By A. A. Milne
Tattoo was the mother of Pinkle Purr,
A little black nothing of feet and fur;
And by and by, when his eyes came through,
He saw his mother, the big Tattoo.
And all that he learned he learned from her,
“I’ll ask my mother,” says Pinkle Purr.
Tattoo was the mother of Pinkle Purr,
A ridiculous kitten with silky fur.
And little black Pinkle grew and grew
Till he got as big as the big Tattoo.
And all he did he did with her.
“Two friends together,” says Pinkle Purr.
Tattoo was the mother of Pinkle Purr,
An adventurous cat in a coat of fur.
And whenever he thought of a thing to do,
He didn’t much bother about Tattoo.
For he knows it’s nothing to do with her,
So “See you later,” says Pinkle Purr.
Tattoo was the mother of Pinkle Purr,
An enormous leopard with coal-black fur.
A little brown kitten that’s nearly new
Is now playing games with its big Tattoo…
And Pink looks lazily down at her:
“Dear little Tat,” says Pinkle Purr

What would you risk for the possibility of happiness? I was watching our family cat, Tangy, at play today and, as he tossed the elastic band he had snatched from me in the air, he playfully jumped up to catch it. He seemed quite happy with what would appear as mindless play to some, and sheer boredom city to others. He did this over and over again, then came over to where I was sitting in the living room, climbed up on the sofa next to me, purred, rubbed his furry body against my arm, then calmly curled up and went to sleep. No whining, no bitching about what nots, no kvetching about life with only a rubber band for entertainment. He is a happy cat. His simple life and a chance to play was enough.  It got me thinking about the complexities we bring to this business of finding and maintaining happiness.  Can we ever be content with our version of ___ (fill in the joyful item) a rubber band?

“The reason people find it so hard to be happy is that they always see the past better than it was, the present worse than it is, and the future less resolved than it will be.” Marcel Pagnol

Reflections: Happiness Is Life As A Lounging Cat…

Reflections: Happiness Is Life As A Lounging Cat…

What Fulfills Your Internal Drive for Happiness? As far as Tangy is concerned, all he needs is his food, playthings, someone to scratch his back, his clean litter box, lots of nooks and crannies, and boxes and bags to lounge in, and he is as happy as a well fed kitty. Perhaps, there is much to learn from our household pets. I know we’ve heard about their unwavering love ad nauseum, and how they remember the little things that matter to us. But what about us and what we’ve gained from them on the subject of contentment and happiness? The only time Tangy ever complains is when he has to sit in his travel box for a visit to the vet.

Oh yes, he meows loudly when it’s time to eat, but I’m not convinced he is unhappy over that because, sometimes, he’ll meow, we’ll add food to his bowl, he’ll walk up and check out the goods, then saunter off as if confirming that we passed the food request test… I suspect his internal drive has been fulfilled. The day we picked him up and brought him home from the animal shelter was a joyful day for all of us. Tangy climbed up on our rocking chair, purred happily for a short moment, then curled up and went to sleep. 😆 What about us? Can we be fulfilled by simple things that don’t have to be replaced by other things in the span of a few minutes? More below. 😉

“Happiness is the meaning and the purpose of life, the whole aim and end of human existence” Aristotle

Reflections: Happiness Is Life As A Lounging Cat…

Happiness by Raymond Carver
So early it’s still almost dark out.
I’m near the window with coffee,
and the usual early morning stuff
that passes for thought.
When I see the boy and his friend
walking up the road
to deliver the newspaper.
They wear caps and sweaters,
and one boy has a bag over his shoulder.
They are so happy
they aren’t saying anything, these boys.
I think if they could, they would take
each other’s arm.
It’s early in the morning,
and they are doing this thing together.
They come on, slowly.
The sky is taking on light,
though the moon still hangs pale over the water.
Such beauty that for a minute
death and ambition, even love,
doesn’t enter into this.
Happiness. It comes on
unexpectedly. And goes beyond, really,
any early morning talk about it.

I think because we humans have so many  unfulfilled expectations, we tend to limit ourselves to just a few ways of seeing the world, thereby limiting the doors that could open us up to new experiences and other possibilities. If we could learn to go with the flow and not sweat the small stuff, our lives would be a tad easier. What irking matter can we let go of today? What rubber band can we toss in the air and catch playfully as we shift our thinking and embrace the happiness that is ours to enjoy? What are your thoughts? What fulfills your happy side? What do you believe about your right t be happy? What would you risk for sake of enjoying many, many happy moments?  Do share! Thank you. 😉

This post was inspired by two prompts from SoulPancake: What Fulfills Your Internal Drive for Happiness? And What do you have faith in? What do you risk for the possibility of happiness?

Positive Motivation Tip: Happiness is who we are not what we do… If we can enjoy a simple thing and be happy, we can learn to find that happiness in complex things. Go meet your joy.

PHOTO CREDITS/ATTRIBUTIONS: All Photos from my personal collection. Or via Wikipedia

Until Next Time…
Ask. Believe. Receive. ©
Elizabeth Obih-Frank
Mirth and Motivation
Positive Kismet

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41 Comments leave one →
  1. 29/01/2012 12:18 am

    Lovely. Cats bring happiness.

    Like

  2. 29/01/2012 12:24 am

    Excellent post .. I love that Pagnol quote. I generally don’t like winter, too cold and too grey generally here in England but…since I have my new camera I am enjoying it more 😉

    Like

  3. 29/01/2012 1:15 am

    greetings by Frizztext!

    Like

  4. Freedom, by the way permalink
    29/01/2012 5:08 am

    Very inspirational post, Eliz. I also love the quote (but don’t remember who said it off the top of my head)
    “Most folks are as happy as they make up their minds to be.”

    Like

    • 29/01/2012 8:10 am

      Lovely words, Elizabeth. Thanks for reading my purr blog.

      Hi, Freedom, by the way.
      “Most folks are as happy as they make up their minds to be.”
      This great quote came from Abraham Lincoln.

      Like

  5. 29/01/2012 6:04 am

    It takes so little to make some happy, and for some, there is not enough in the world to bring happiness.

    Like

  6. 29/01/2012 7:32 am

    I thnk Aristotle was right, that we are here to experience happiness…that it is the purpose of life……I think a lot of people don’t have a clue.

    Like

  7. 29/01/2012 7:52 am

    Our cats were farm cats, and they could come and go as they pleased. Some hung around for many years and seemed happy. They did not like being in the house. They liked being unconfined and free to roam wherever.

    Like

    • 29/01/2012 8:14 pm

      Sounds like the dogs we had when I was little. They roamed freely. nowadays they have to be leashed. I’ve added your link as a related article. TY! 🙂

      Like

  8. 29/01/2012 8:56 am

    I so love the post, and the pictures you shared to go with. Truly do get us thinking about happiness! God Bless 🙂

    I do hope all is well on your end!

    Like

  9. 29/01/2012 9:26 am

    I love your cat! My dogs are great teachers of savoring the little things and sharing love. Great post!
    b

    Like

  10. 29/01/2012 11:30 am

    isn’t that the greatest poem!?! I’ve loved that from the first time I read it a loooonnnggg time ago.,
    fantastic post!

    Like

  11. Jackie Paulson permalink
    29/01/2012 2:06 pm

    I love cats, and I hope that one is yours… 🙂 I love your poem and posts today about happiness..it’s so true about us all that we need not judge and let the doors of opportunity come and think out side our boxes… xoxo

    Like

  12. 29/01/2012 2:09 pm

    I love that Raymond Carver piece. Thanks. I think he’s right that happiness comes on unexpectedly. It’s elusive – I’ve often felt that sort of sudden happiness – it’s as if lots of pieces suddenly slip into perfect place creating perfect alignment – maybe that’s harmony?

    Like

  13. 29/01/2012 2:14 pm

    Raymond Carver is marvelous… But I am not a cat lover. They make me uncomfortable.

    Like

  14. Bree permalink
    29/01/2012 3:03 pm

    I love your cat Tangy. He must also enjoy being photographed and poses so well. Long live happy pets and the life lessons they teach us.
    B

    Like

  15. 29/01/2012 3:18 pm

    We could all do with taking a leaf out of a cat’s book – they know how to enjoy life!
    Love the photos of Tangy, especially the one of him in the bag!

    Like

  16. 29/01/2012 3:34 pm

    As far as happiness goes, I agree with Aristotle and the Dalai Lama:

    “Happiness is the meaning and the purpose of life, the whole aim and end of human existence” Aristotle

    When asked, What is the meaning of life?, the Dalai Lama answered, “to be happy and to make others happy.”

    In The Art of Happiness, the Dalai Lama shares his belief that the purpose of life is to seek happiness, and that the motion of our life is towards happiness.

    What you attain in life is largely irrelevant to this quest for happiness. Instead, how you view the world determines your happiness.

    Barn’s burnt down ~ now I can see the moon. Masahide (1657-1723)

    Great post, E! With thanks to the cameo appearance by Tangy!

    Like

  17. 29/01/2012 4:38 pm

    A great post with a strong message. Cats – as well as other animals – seem to be able to enjoy life as it is, much easier than human beings, although life for wild animals of course can be very harsh and dangerous. Thanks for the quotes with so much wisdom.

    Like

  18. 29/01/2012 5:42 pm

    Your cat is awesome…we had one that looked very similiar…Butterscotch was his name.
    Happiness…we have to choose it, I think. Lots of other options out there…but it’s the one that makes sense to me. 🙂
    Thank you, Eliz, for a wonderful post!

    Like

  19. 29/01/2012 8:54 pm

    Wonderful and playful…and a beautiful kitty! I wasn’t familiar with the A.A. Milne poem so that was a treat. I “let go” much better after a day of being outdoors. Somehow I breathe differently which relaxes me and restores some perspective. Right now I have a dear friend dealing with a very serious health issue, and because I care for her, I think I’m sweating the small stuff much less right now. It’s a shame, I think, that somehow illness brings about that perspective. I’m learning! Debra

    Like

  20. 29/01/2012 9:54 pm

    Oh my … oh my oh my, I could steal him. He is gorgeous and wonderful. Cats quite simply know how to be happy. I adore them. Unfortunately, I must give up all thought of theft regarding cats as my own two are rather psychotic. 😉

    Like

  21. 30/01/2012 5:45 am

    Oh that adorable little co-star of yours today brings me happiness just looking at his cuddly little poses!! The message I hear is find joy in the simple things and you have unlocked the secret to reducing your stress. Give Tangy a big squeeze from me! 🙂

    Like

  22. 30/01/2012 5:56 am

    Although I think cats are lovely creatures, I prefer the company of a dog.

    Like

  23. 30/01/2012 7:32 am

    Well, I do have a regular schedule of going to school twice a week. I have time that I like to spend doing homework, and I do try to accomplish that before it’s due. I am procrastinating this week, but I really should try to not do that so much. The one thing that makes me so happy is getting good grades. That is more important than anything else.

    Like

  24. 30/01/2012 7:39 am

    I was trying to find a quote from the Dalai Lama that my neighbor showed to me recently – something to the effect that we spend our lives chasing money and miss out on life then spend our money chasing health. I know I’ve missed a part but I hope you get the gist.
    Great post. Been thinking a lot about that lately as I re-make myself in this new space. Thanks for this, Elizabeth. It help to put things into proper perspective.

    Like

  25. 30/01/2012 11:56 am

    These words would be spoken by my cat, Miss Fluffy:
    “Such beauty that for a minute
    death and ambition, even love,
    doesn’t enter into this.
    Happiness. It comes on
    unexpectedly. And goes beyond, really,
    any early morning talk about it.”
    Completely awesome, heart-string-tugging poem here. And the photos are much appreciated and savored.

    Like

  26. 30/01/2012 12:39 pm

    Animals certainly hold the key to what life is all about–uncomplicated and simple.

    Like

  27. 30/01/2012 3:09 pm

    Okay, truth be known, I don’t do well with long posts, LOL! However, the kitty pics along with the first quote works for me! xx, Margie

    Like

  28. 30/01/2012 6:22 pm

    Wonderful words and photos of contentment. I am not lazy – I am a cat.

    Like

  29. 30/01/2012 9:20 pm

    Tangy is a real cute kitty and sounds very much like my kitty. This is random but, hehe, I like latebloomerbuds confession up there. Funny 🙂
    I’m happy now 🙂

    Like

  30. 01/02/2012 12:48 am

    Happiness is in the small details of life and the little daily rituals that keep us grounded – and a good laugh and hug with a good friend 🙂

    Like

  31. 01/02/2012 5:04 am

    I was talking about this too with my friend: pets are so lucky… and so happy! They don’t ask much of their life. Food, shelter, water and affection are what all they need to be satisfied with their existence. They make their life easy and simple, while we tend to make it too complicated!

    Like

  32. 01/02/2012 4:02 pm

    What a cute kitty! Wouldn’t it be great if we could all have our needs met so easily?

    Like

  33. 13/11/2014 2:21 pm

    Reblogged this on Mirth and Motivation and commented:

    Every day we have a choice: We can choose to be happy or miserable or sad. Today, I choose happiness. What about you? I think our family cat, Tangy, can teach us a thing or two about that much used word. … HAPPINESS! Here’s his feedback – Tangy says : “Now please read the post. Yes, the quotes are awesome but I’d appreciate a comment about the post not the quotes.” ” Oh yes! Please don’t thank her for sharing. She’s thankful YOU are here!”

    Like

  34. 13/11/2014 11:43 pm

    I’ll try to keep his is mind as I go off to face Friday!

    Like

  35. 14/11/2014 6:51 pm

    as I have two kitties myself… have often watched them in simple play…envious at times… of their laid back ways…of sleeping all day…eating/drinking…getting pets… washing like they are going somewhere…and then maybe… but, on their time …give us a little lick or rub…and begin again…

    Like

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