Home » Features » Donald & Charlie Talk About Love & Happiness

To have unconditioned happiness,
have unconditioned love
for one and all.

Stonepeace

There is a great conversational gem in the underrated film ‘Adaptation’. In it, Charlie spoke of, to his brother Donald, a time in high school, when he was watching him talk to a girl called Sarah, whom Donald had a crush on. Though she appeared sweet to Donald, when he walked away, she made fun of him to another person. Being twins, Charlie felt bad for both of them, though Donald seemed so happy then. To his surprise, Donald revealed that he did hear them making fun of him.

Puzzled, Charlie asked why he remained happy despite the ‘betrayal’. Donald replied that he loved Sarah. ‘It was mine, that love. I owned it. Even Sarah [who didn’t appreciate it] didn’t have the right to take it away. I can love whoever I want.’ Charlie retorted that Sarah thought Donald was pathetic, to which he said, ‘That was her business, not mine. You are what you love, not what loves you. That’s what I decided a long time ago.’ After some thoughtful pause, Charlie thanked Donald, for his invaluable sharing.

Why let others define how you should feel? You are the one who decides. Let no one hold your happiness ransom. Be in control. As Master Cheng Yan taught, ‘To be angry is to let others’ mistakes punish yourself.’ Why not just do what is appropriate to right the situation? If not possible, why not just move on? Hearing that a friend’s spouse of many years suddenly exclaimed that he never really loved her, I shared the dialogue above with her. As long as she was true-hearted over the years, she should have no regrets – because she is blameless. No one should destroy her faith in her true love – not even a lost love. Why let the heartless break your heart? Like Donald, just smile and move on!

To be enlightened is to be so big-hearted,
so embracing of all,
that the heart has no place to break.

– Stonepeace

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4 Responses to “Donald & Charlie Talk About Love & Happiness”

  1. Yes, but he loves someone who obviously is uncaring in that she was sweet to him to his face and then laughed about him. If he is what he loves – an uncaring cold person then I don’t think he would want to be considered what he loves. If that makes sense.

    I love the phrase though and see where it can apply to so many things so thanks for giving me something to reflect on.

    With metta…

  2. Leafygreen May 13, 2011

    In the movie, we’re not sure whether Donald still went with the flow of the ‘betrayal’ or smartened up and really walked away for good.

    (U)

    I think the point is that he didn’t let someone letting him down bring him down.

    (L)

  3. Jetty Koh via Facebook May 13, 2011

    Thanks for sharing all these movie reviews,
    helps me to be more aware of what to look out for when watching,
    yet mindful not to be “masked” by what I hear from you.

    Love hurts,
    not because the one we love hurts us,
    but because we love ourselves too much.

  4. Jetty May 13, 2011

    Thanks for sharing all these movie reviews,
    helps me to be more aware of what to look out for when watching,
    yet mindful not to be “masked” by what I hear from you.

    Love hurts,
    not because the one we love hurts us,
    but because we love ourselves too much.

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