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 Aries_328
Joined: 10/16/2011
Msg: 21
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A guide to true happiness?Page 2 of 2    (1, 2)
It's good that you’re finding out that all of these things you think you could believe have actually been around for a few thousand years and have names, definitions, and a whole lot of people trying to interpret what 'it all means'

Try not to get caught up in pithy quotes. Although the quotes are good for topic bashing and summarizing they are not the point.

The point is to follow the paths of thought and argue to reach understanding. Did you land in the same place? Is your dissent based on logic or feeling or lack of understanding and the same with your agreement?

College is actually a great place to learn about it. At least there you are guided through the logic and challenged to understand and provided points and highlights that you would have missed after 10 full readings. Political philosophy classes are great. Pretend you don't have a political affiliation. Start at the beginning and see where you really land. It's difficult though. Plato's 'The Republic" was a great place to start but if I didn't have guidance my head would have twisted off after the first page.
http://classics.mit.edu/Plato/republic.html
 Aries_328
Joined: 10/16/2011
Msg: 23
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A guide to true happiness?
Posted: 12/22/2011 2:57:09 PM

Is it intelligent to be able to not get worked up by the absurdity of the world? Is it my intelligence that makes me so laid back it takes a lot to get me angry? Does having less intelligence mean you're more prone to soaking up negativity? Like the poster says, "dumb as a rock" people tend to be genuinely happy, because of the age old saying of "ignorance is bliss"; do you agree?


Well, since I have always counted myself in the dumb as a rock crowd I am not exactly sure how that specifically applies to happiness.

The assumption here is that it is somehow possible to know what different intelligence levels feel like. That would be awesome actually. Going from my lowest sense of !duh would be the random gardener class type of person. They may or may not speak English. However when you try to communicate with them all they can manage to do is smile and say yes. Do they go home smiling and saying yes? I really have no f*n clue :) It seems that way. They seem happy and although you can project a sense of longing to know how the other half lives you really have no idea how to even get the information from them. All you can do is a thought experiment of, ‘what it might be like'...

I actually tried this with my daughter. When she was just starting to form words, I tried to ask her what it felt like to be a baby. Of course she didn't have the words or external knowledge to understand the meaning I was looking for to be able to express it. Just all smiles. One day while driving in the car when she was almost 4 I realized I was actually having a conversation with her. Now is my chance! "Dear, do you remember what it was like to be a baby?" "No." Arrrrrgghhhh

Sometimes I feel like I know too much. When presented with situations I can give you 50 ways in which things can possibly go wrong. This has actually put me pretty far in my career. Although because of this I also get called negative. I see nothing negative about it at all. In fact it feels much more positive to be aware of risks so they can be accounted for. That makes things better. That doesn't translate well to other people’s opinion of me. So I have to compensate interpersonally around that.

I have also been in situations where I feel like the most ignorant person on the planet. That’s easy. Put me in a group of guys talking about football teams, stats, coaches and I'm the smiling idiot. But all of this is just situational context and gives me no perspective of how another actually feels especially at different intelligence levels.

So, do I agree... I have no f*n idea! :)
 Jan Sobieski
Joined: 7/4/2008
Msg: 25
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A guide to true happiness?
Posted: 12/22/2011 4:26:04 PM
In The Nicomachean Ethics, Aristotle asserts that 'eudaimonia' (a life well lived), is best achieved through finding the correct balance, or the 'mean', of human character traits. If one is too generous, one is a sap who does not care sufficiently for their own interests. Not generous enough, and one is a detriment to those around them, and hence themselves. So it is, he says, with all things, and I think we may do well to consider this with regards to 'happiness'.

By this I mean to say that happiness is meaningless unless one can compare it to another state of being: as the saying goes "all sunshine makes a desert", and this of course implies that one must have experienced sadness in order to properly appreciate those moments of happiness which do come our way. The two states are intrinsically linked and to a certain extent dependent on each other, which is why I see the modern trend of aspiring for 'true happiness' an utterly ludicrous and ultimately empty pursuit.

I do not know that suffering has made my life any better: I do know that it has made it more profound. - Nietzsche

A person above mentioned The Republic, and this is a very good example of the slippery slope we walk when we try to rationalize and 'manufacture' certain abstract and ultimately emotive conditions (in that particular instance, justice). However, perhaps even more relevant to this discussion is Huxley's 'Brave New World', where he paints out a similar dystopia, only being more more concerned with the 'happy society'. A society in which everyone is 'content'; to be otherwise is 'abnormal'; and there is nothing substantial nor profound to be found therein.
 Aries_328
Joined: 10/16/2011
Msg: 26
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A guide to true happiness?
Posted: 12/22/2011 4:32:37 PM
^^^ You could have just said, “Happiness is in the eye of the beholder"
 Jan Sobieski
Joined: 7/4/2008
Msg: 27
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A guide to true happiness?
Posted: 12/22/2011 5:01:29 PM

You could have just said, “Happiness is in the eye of the beholder"



Yeah.... nah.... not really.


Also, when I say that I find the pursuit of true happiness to be an "... ultimately empty pursuit," I do not mean this as a slight on the op, and I hope it wasn't taken that way. It's just that it is, and I do.
 Aries_328
Joined: 10/16/2011
Msg: 29
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A guide to true happiness?
Posted: 12/22/2011 7:01:26 PM

I find the pursuit of true happiness to be an "... ultimately empty pursuit,"


Absolutely agree, however. I do find that the "Pursuit of Happiness" to be quite fulfilling.

:)
 A_Gent
Joined: 8/18/2011
Msg: 31
A guide to true happiness?
Posted: 12/29/2011 8:17:12 AM
The secret to happiness? Live a 'good enough' life

... “Having very high standards of achievement – working hard, persevering, not being satisfied with what is merely acceptable – no doubt spurs people to achieve things that they would otherwise not achieve,” Prof. Schwartz says. “But there’s a crucial difference between shooting for perfection, realizing you can’t achieve it and yet still being satisfied with your accomplishments and shooting for perfection, thinking you can and should achieve it and thereby living a life of misery and perpetual disappointment.” ...

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/life/relationships/news-and-views/sarah-hampson/the-secret-to-happiness-live-a-good-enough-life/article2037845/
 pappy009
Joined: 2/3/2008
Msg: 32
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A guide to true happiness?
Posted: 12/29/2011 10:52:20 AM
----The secret to happiness? Live a 'good enough' life---

Absolutely...Your only passing thru...Accept it, love it and live it....
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