Happiness can be defined as state of being happy. But how can we achieve this state?
And is this state temporarily(short term) or permanent(long term)?
Being happy doesn’t means that we will also necessary be satisfied with our life as to be contented with life, one need to achieve permanent state of well being not temporary feeling of joy diminishing with time.
Are we happy? This is a question which will boggle our mind. I envisage than correct question to beseech will be that what brand of happy are we as happiness can be contrasting in kinds.
For some people happiness is “feeling good” and to obtain this feeling people chase pleasure and run from pain.
From this perspective, a person’s main objective in life is to experience as much joie de vivre as possible while generally avoiding any lugubrious and arduous experience and for this people associate happiness with having lots of material wealth and allocating as much time as possible to purchasing things, going out to restaurants or eateries, and generally having fun by any mean possible, the objective is to spend as much time having fun and as little time as possible doing things that aren’t fun, pain avoidance, like working and engaging in boring or tedious tasks.
This is Hedonic happiness
It is linked with theory of utilitarianism, which means to acquire thing or perform actions that provides highest utility in order to obtain happiness but the problem is that when utility attached to a object reaches its peak than it starts to decline and enters negative threshold in end.
This we can say that a temporary phase of happiness attached to materialistic objects and base desires.
As when a person desires for new car and when he purchase it, he feels happy but with passage of time this happiness declines and it ends with desire to replace this old car with new one and again the quest for new happiness start.
Therefore, happiness attached to materialistic desires of money, wealth, beauty, fame etc are temporarily in nature.
As per John Stuart Mill, it can be classified as “Happiness of Pig”.
Eudaimonic Happiness is another type of happiness.
Eudaimonia means “flourishing”and it is of having a worthwhile life rather than an explicitly pleasant one.
In order to have a good life, being virtuous is enough even if it is less pleasurable than a life of vice, state of permanent well being and satisfaction in life can be achieved this way.
A life which is dedicated to reason and intellect, toiling for a higher cause and spent in pursuit of knowledge can give satisfaction even if it is lacking external goods of wealth and money.
A life spent for supreme raison d’être like helping others, making world a better place or fighting corrupt dogmas and untrue beliefs with reason and intellect can bring happiness and joy in poverty and subsistence and even biggest sacrifice can be made and all the pain can be tolerated with a smile on face.
This idea of happiness dates back to Socrates and the Stoics of Ancient Hellenistic times.
Then how do you know what will make you happy ?
This is a mammoth question that people spend most of their lives wrestling with, but it’s also mostly subjective.
For example, what it takes to make one person happy might also make someone else very unhappy. Happiness is indeed a complex notion. To decipher it, we have to clad it as well-being, which is the extent to which a person feels comfortable and satisfied with his life.
Happiness and well being might seem like nearly tantamount terms, but consider this: a person might use drugs or alcohol to feel happy, but this is short-term and has serious consequences for his physical and mental health that will likely lead to unhappiness.
Given that, when people use the term ‘happy’ what they’re really hinting to is a proviso of well being.
To achieve state of being well, a perennial state, we have to depart from our mundane, acquisitive and unspiritual desires in order to prowl after lofty and noble motives.