Sufi Master Hazrat Inayat Khan (1882-1927) deeply influence my thoughts. I have no hesitation to admit that my personal realization matches very much with this great Sufi Master from India who presented the Sufi Message directly for the first time in the West. This is an article by him which i love to share here with you.
The Alchemy of Happiness
THE SOUL in Sanskrit, in the terms of the Vedanta, is called Atman which means happiness or bliss itself. It is not that happiness belongs to the soul; it is that the soul itself is happiness. Today we often confuse happiness with pleasure; but pleasure is only an illusion, a shadow of happiness; and in this delusion man may pass his whole life, seeking after pleasure and never finding satisfaction. There is a Hindu saying that man looks for pleasure and finds pain. Every pleasure seems happiness in outward appearance; it promises happiness, for it is the shadow of happiness, but just as the shadow of a person is not the person though representing his form, so pleasure represents happiness but is not happiness in reality.
A person may follow a religion and yet not come to the realization of truth. But of what use is his religion to him if he is not happy? Religion does not mean depression and sadness. The spirit of religion should give happiness. God is happy. He is the perfection of love, harmony, and beauty. A religious person should be happier than one who is not religious.
After the heart is warmed by the divine element which is love, the next stage is the love of God. But the love of God alone is not sufficient; knowledge of God is also necessary. It is the absence of the knowledge of God which makes a man leave his religion, for there is a limit to man's patience. Knowledge of God strengthens man's belief in God, throws light on the individual and on life. Things become clear; every leaf on a tree becomes as a page of a holy book to one whose eyes are open to the knowledge of God.