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Taking It Home, Workshop 3: Hosea Ballou

In "What Moves Us," a Tapestry of Faith program

There is an immortal desire in every soul for... happiness. — Hosea Ballou, in A Treatise on Atonement

Think of something you might do that could increase the happiness of others or yourself. Then, do it, as a personal faith project to explore your own "theology of happiness." You might pick up a cup of coffee for a co-worker when you buy your own and give it to them as an unasked for, unexpected gift. You might decide to ask a person how they are and really listen, asking more questions to demonstrate interest rather than trying to break into the narrative with your own personal tale. Perhaps, on a particular day, you will figure out how to make a comment or request in a positive, supportive manner to bring happiness rather than guilt, shame, anger, or other negative responses.

After doing this faith project, decide how your own theology of happiness might inform a regular spiritual practice.

Faith in Action

Alone or with others, commit to noticing what makes you happy and what increases your happiness by increasing the happiness of others. Make a practice of deepening and increasing your experience of happiness and the happiness of others—a spiritual practice. Make time with others to share your experiences of happiness. Consider journaling about your happiness experiences.

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Last updated on Thursday, February 7, 2013.

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