Happiness is accepting and choosing life, not just submitting grudgingly to it. It comes when we choose to be who we are, to be ourselves, at this present moment of our lives; we choose life at it is, with all its joys, pain and conflicts. Happiness is living and seeking the truth, together with others in community, and assuming responsibility for our lives and the lives of others. It is accepting the fact that we are not infinite, but can enter into a personal relationship with the Infinite, discovering the universal truth and justice that transcends all cultures: each person is unique and sacred. We are not just seeking what others want us to be or to conform to the expectations of family, friends, or local ways of being. We have chosen to be who we are, with all this is beautiful and broken in us. We do not slip away from life and live in a world of illusions, dreams, or nightmares. We become present to reality and to life. We become present to reality and to life so that we are free to live according to our personal conscience, our sacred sanctuary, where love resides within us and we see others as they are in the depth of their being. We are not letting the light of life within us be crushed, and we are not crushing it in others. On the contrary, all we want is for the light of others to shine.
Jean Vanier, Essential Writings