Me and my dad were driving along Espana Boulevard when he asked me how was my retreat. I told him it was great and that if there was one thing that I learned, it would have to be this: "Happiness is a carrot on a stick."
I was about to tell him what it was all about when he suddenly cut me in the middle of my sentence to ask, "What stick?" (I was about to get to that dad!) but before I could answer, I realized that we have reached my destination. It was time for me to alight the car.
What's the point? Well... nothing. I just wanted to waste three paragraphs. (Kidding.)
"Carrot on a stick" refers to a policy of offering a combination of rewards and punishment to induce behavior.
In this case, the driver would tie a carrot on a string to a long stick and dangle it in front of the donkey, just out of its reach. As the donkey moved forward to get the carrot, it pulled the cart and the driver so that the carrot would always remain out of reach.
"Happiness is a carrot on a stick" is about man's struggle to seek for happiness after happiness. For every step we move forward -- so does the carrot. Our happiness always seems to be at some destination we cannot reach; so we are never truly happy. It is a process that goes on and on.
"Happiness is a carrot on a stick" is the perfect picture of how life should NOT be lived -- happiness perceived as a destination.
Happiness should not be delayed until the end of the stick is reached. Happiness is as such. It starts the very moment it is claimed. As Buddha claimed, life is perfect as such. If we keep on seeking for happiness, we will never find it -- because searching is the antithesis for happiness.