Joseph Campbell first started using the phrase as a short hand for a much larger idea, and like all short hand the original meaning has to be brought up from time to time.
In many forms of yogic philosophy, enlightenment is achieved through Sat-cit-ānanda:
- right or perfect being: Sat (सत्)
- right or perfect consciousness: Cit (चित्)
- right or perfect bliss: Ānanda (आनंद)
According to the story that Campbell told in the Power of Myth, he did not know how to tell if his being is right or perfect, or he consciousness, but he knew where his bliss was, so he could Follow His Bliss, and hopefully stumble upon the other two.
Bliss is not pleasure. It is happiness. The basic question is: "What makes you happy?" There is something that you do that makes time fall away, makes you happy, and makes you content.
The idea behind "Follow Your Bliss" is that each of us should find that one thing that fills us with bliss and follow after it to see where it leads us. Campbell equated this activity with seeking out our destiny. Our Bliss shows us what it is we not only enjoy doing, but what we are good at.
When we follow our bliss, it is amazing how invisible hands reach out to help us along the way. This, again, is where people often over sell. Following our Bliss will not necessarily make us rich, but it will make us successful.
If we define our success as a having a lot of material goods and riches, then we will most likely fail. Success us better measured by our relationships and our ability to sustain a good quality of life.
The question is: How do we find our bliss?
What makes you happy? Do you like to read, write, build things, watch movies, play games? What ever you like to do, find a way to follow after it. Don't be embarrassed, and don't let yourself dwell on how you will make money at it. The goal is to have a fulfilling life.
Before we can move forward, we have to find our bliss. What makes you happy?