You know the song…
Monday night was my oldest daughter’s college Graduation. She received her Bachelor of Arts Degree – Cum Laude.
Her commencement speaker was columnist David Brooks. His speech was essentially excerpted from his new book: The Second Mountain.
I didn’t know he was going to be at the commencement. I happen to be a fan and long time reader. He made this interesting distinction in his talk (which prompted me to buy his book) about the difference between joy and happiness. Here is an excerpt from his book:
Every so often, you meet people who radiate joy—who seem to know why they were put on this earth, who glow with a kind of inner light. Life, for these people, has often followed what we might think of as a two-mountain shape. They get out of school, they start a career, and they begin climbing the mountain they thought they were meant to climb. Their goals on this first mountain are the ones our culture endorses: to be a success, to make your mark, to experience personal happiness. But when they get to the top of that mountain, something happens. They look around and find the view . . . unsatisfying. They realize: This wasn’t my mountain after all. There’s another, bigger mountain out there that is actually my mountain.
And so they embark on a new journey. On the second mountain, life moves from self-centered to other-centered. They want the things that are truly worth wanting, not the things other people tell them to want. They embrace a life of interdependence, not independence. They surrender to a life of commitment.
I liked the way he illustrated the distinction between joy and happiness – saying the families felt joy for their loved ones graduating and the graduates felt happiness for their accomplishment.
As for myself, I hope to become one of those people that radiate joy. I am in pursuit. Working hard on who I am – not just what I do.
Pursuing joy in the Arizona desert,