Excerpt from: Joy
"Happiness is unbelievable. It seems that man cannot be happy. If you talk about your depression, sadness, misery, everybody believes it; it seems natural. If you talk about your happiness nobody believes you – it seems unnatural.
"Sigmund Freud, after forty years of research into the human mind – working with thousands of people, observing thousands of disturbed minds – came to the conclusion that happiness is a fiction: man cannot be happy. At the most, we can make things a little more comfortable, that’s all. At the most we can make unhappiness a little less, that’s all, but happy? Man cannot be.
"Looks very pessimistic… but looking at humanity, it seems to be exactly the case; it seems to be a fact. Only human beings are unhappy. Something deep down has gone wrong.
"I say this to you on my own authority: Human beings can be happy, more happy than the birds, more happy than the trees, more happy than the stars – because human beings have something which no tree, no bird, no star, has. They have consciousness.
"But when you have consciousness, two alternatives are possible: either you can become happy or you can become unhappy. Then it is your choice. Trees are simply happy because they cannot be unhappy. Their happiness is not their freedom; they have to be happy. They don’t know how to be unhappy; there is no alternative for them. The birds chirping in the trees are happy not because they have chosen to be happy – they are simply happy because they don’t know any other way to be. Their happiness is unconscious; it is simply natural.
"Human beings can be tremendously happy and tremendously unhappy – and they are free to choose. This freedom is hazardous, this freedom is very dangerous because you become responsible. And something has happened with this freedom, something has gone wrong. Man is somehow standing on his head." Osho