When all the battlefield was filled with warriors, with Brahma and Vishnu in attendance,

       there occurred the instant when the forts came together. Lord Shiva merely smiled. The forts

       were burned to ashes. The battle was over before it began!

 

The above quote is from a Hindu story that tells of how Lord Shiva destroyed the Tripura with a smile. The Tripura were three great cities that dominated the world with impiety, power and greed. These three cities represent our physical, emotional and mental bodies that are ruled by illusion, maya and glamour . . . the trinity of the third dimension. Lord Shiva is known as “The Destroyer” who dismantles maya, glamour and illusion. He is a creator, transformer and protector of the Universe!

If Lord Shiva’s smile can bring down the Tripura, what can his laugh do? The essence of Lord Shiva lives in all. When was the last time we had a real belly laugh? Did you know children laugh much more frequently than adults; they find so much in life funny? It is because of their innocence and ability to perceive that this world is truly God’s precious gift to humanity. Laughter is the gateway to joy. According to mystics and religious scientists, laughter changes the chemistry in our bodies, strengthens our immune system, is the antithesis of depression, and relieves stress.

Madan Kataria is the founder of Laughter Yoga where people gather regularly to practice laughing. This is a worldwide organization whose objective is “to build an international community of people who believe in love and laughter.”  - Madan Kataria

What turns some people off to yoga, religion, and/or any discipline is that they are taken way too seriously. This is because we take ourselves too seriously. The ability to laugh is essential in any relationship, be it with God, humanity, Nature, and all that is beyond our perception. Laughter stimulates our major organs and increases endorphins from our brains. Surely, laughter  is God’s last and foremost gift to humanity:

When the LORD brought back the captives to Zion, we were like men who dreamed. Our mouths were filled with laughter, our tongues with songs of joy. Then it was said among the nations, "The LORD has done great things for them." The LORD has done great things for us, and we are filled with joy. – Psalm 126:1-2

 This decade is for humanity is to lighten up! What best way to do this than to laugh?