What is Contentment?


According to Prophet Muhammad, “Contentment is wealth that never diminishes, and a treasure that never perishes”. The Prophet defines ‘wealth’ not through material quantity but through need. According to him, a person who does not feel needy towards something or someone in this world is wealthy, regardless of how much he possesses in material, quantitative terms. Therefore, people who are content is very wealthy, because they do not feel they need anything more. When people are asked if they are content with their lives, most would respond with a yes. The same respondents often look for unnecessary desires they cannot have, but think that they should in order for them to be happy. They are unaware that contentment is the state of being happy since it gives a feeling of satisfaction, being at present, and grateful to blessings.

Contentment is connected to satisfaction as it allows people to take pleasure in what they have and who they are, even if it is only with life’s simplest offerings. It frees a person from envy and longing and so makes a person generous. People who are satisfied with their lives are those who do not have to try harder in order to achieve their goals. It is this certain point in one’s life wherein they feel fine with what they have, what they are doing and who they are with whatever the situation may be. This also serves as people’s point of total clarity in their lives. If they are satisfied with what they have, and they are happy with it, such feeling will be long lasting. It is a different feeling of satisfaction in the sense that they will not wish for anything more, it is like embracing the satisfaction, the joy, and the happiness that is within their reach. According to William Coyne, “I believe we have the power to create our own happiness. I believe the real magic in the world is done by humans. I believe normal life is extraordinary.” Mr. Coyne also shared a story as he contemplates about it, Coyne was sitting in the car at a stoplight intersection listening to the radio. He was lost in the moment, thinking how happy he was to be inside his nice warm. It was cold and windy outside and he thought, “Life is good.” As he waited, he noticed two people huddled together at the bus stop. In his eyes they look uncomfortable; they looked cold and they looked poor. The couple seemed to be doing their best to keep warm, but while they are doing it they were laughing and sharing a good joke. Instead of pitying them, he envied them. They did not notice the wind, and they were not worried about their clothes. He assumed things were all bad for them, but they were not. And he understood, every human has the power to make moments of contentment happen. Reaching this stage in life takes a long time accompanied with various doubts and emotions but it still depends on the person whether or not they are already content and happy.

Being at present and enjoying every moment with the help and guidance of God is also a product of contentment. A person with God is a person who is content. It comes down to two different types of contentment. The first is material or physical contentment. Once people get what they desire, after some time, they will look for other things that will make them contented and the search for it goes on and on and it becomes perpetual. This is not the real purpose of life. For life to become meaningful, people should have real and ultimate contentment. The other kind of contentment would be the inner contentment. This comes naturally and comes within one’s self. This is what the real contentment truly means. Only a contented mind can give continuous and real happiness. Worldly pleasures and comforts only make up a part of the real satisfaction in life, and only through a perfect balance of these two sources of happiness can one be truly happy.

Feeling of discontentment is inevitable to people but once this begin to arise, always seek for the better side, be optimistic, magnify the little things, find the contentment in everything and always dwell on the blessings. Nevertheless, contentment does not mean that people do not want to stop growing and to stop becoming a better person, it just simply means achieving the goals, and doing God-Given tasks at peace. Scientific Research has shown that contented people live longer, are healthier and are more successful. They also enjoy more fulfilling relationships and are respected by others. Therefore, instead of brooding over the pains and sorrows, one should always keep themselves busy and find pleasure in small things.

Always be happy and appreciate the life that one has now through the power of minds. Abraham Lincoln once said, “You are as happy as you make up your mind to be.” Being happy and contented is a matter of choice. It is up to a person to choose what is best for them and what will matter the most. A person should strive to achieve the set goals with a motivation and a driven dedication. They should put efforts to change what they can and accept what they cannot.

Contentment comes from achieving a peace with what one has and accepting that one cannot have everything.  He does not make himself miserable by envying those who have what he has not. Contentment is more than being grateful for the small things in life, it is being grateful for simply being. When the feeling of discontent begins to rise and the mind seeks out all that is wrong and could be changed for the better, find the contentment. When the search for contentment starts to drive you to make you feel frustrated, and to make you angry. Look at the good things around, and try on the phrase, “I am content.”



Coyne, W. (2007, February 26) Creating Our Own Happiness., Retrieved February 26, 2016, from http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=7572601


Chan, TH (2011) Happiness & Health., Retrieved Feb 26, 2016, from http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/news/magazine/happiness-stress-heart-disease/


English Daily (n.d.) Happiness., Retrieved Feb 26, 2016, from



Rizvi, Arzalan (October 19, 2011) Happiness and Contentment., Retrieved Feb 26, 2016, from



Wisdom Commons (n.d.) Contentment., Retrieved Feb 26, 2016, from http://www.wisdomcommons.org/virtue/26-contentment/proverbs



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