A few years ago, a guy from England decided that his life was too painful and sad. He was having trouble with relationships and a lot of other things. While taking care of his friend’s dog he had the flash of brilliance; “if only I was an animal, I would be like this dog, not a care in the world, I would be so happy.”

After considering which animal species he could “become” in order to find happiness, including contemplating on different types of animals, even an elephant, he settled on becoming a goat, after a Nordic Sharman said he was more of a “goat person”. And so, he dedicated a huge amount of resources and time to try and become a goat, including having custom-made prosthetics developed and even consulting with an animal psychologist. He finally fulfilled his dream by spending time amongst herds of goats in the Swiss Alps.

When one is devoid of knowledge of the real self, there is the danger that we become fixated on identifying with some “false self” because it seems to be in tune with my mind and my desires. But falsely identifying with anything material in the hope that I will discover my true self will never prove fruitful. Ultimately it will only cause us unhappiness and even harm.

We are not the gross material bodies, nor the mind and its infinite desires. We are eternal spiritual beings, and it is only once we give up false identities and discover our “true” and eternal selves will we begin to experience the actual happiness we all desire.