Sunday, August 26, 2012

The Pursuit of Happiness


The other night I watched this documentary "about human beings at their best". It begins with the following quote , and documents travel around the world to find the earth's happiest people. Not surprisingly, the happiest people are indigenous folks, living at a level of sheer survival,  but with close ties to family and community. The unhappiest? The developed nations, with their excess, who never seem to have "Enough" to satisfy their cravings.

The Constitution guarantees the American people 
the right to pursue happiness. 
You have to catch it yourself.

Benjamin Franklin

The documentary suggests committing acts of kindness 
has proven to raise one's happiness quotient exponentially, 
and advises: 
Spend time with friends and family. 
Connect to your community. 
Be Happy.

Good advice.

image from google, photobucket, various sources

Monks definitely know how to be happy!!!!!!!!!
Happy Sunday, kids!

5 comments:

  1. Happiness would be hard to really measure, I think, as it is so relative. I also think it depends on what it is compared to. I also think that one's ideas of happiness change when one's horizon broadens. I think sometimes that it is easy, for example, for a toddler to be happy as he/she does not know what all is 'out there' and he/she also has probably not experienced a lot of sadness.

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  2. I agree with Mary to a great extent, but was struck by the idea of a happinesss quotient. I often think that happiness is something we see in hindsight because we are too busy being in the moment itself. Each of us has some idea about what would make us happy and then have to find out if that is true or not. Thus the definition changes over time and we must grow to embrace it fully.

    Elizabeth
    http://soulsmusic.wordpress.com/2012/08/26/loosely-knit/

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  3. Thank you for such powerfully framed good advice. I remember first reading BF Skinner's WALDEN TWO ages ago and being astonished as he surmised that truly happy people may not know the concept of happiness as it is just as each day is and therefore normal, not exceptional! To be aware of happiness, we need at least a little unhappiness to put it in.

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  4. If I put on a warm pair of socks and feel comfort, if I have a nice conversation with a friend with a cup of tea at hand, if I hand a pair of shoes to a shoeless person, if when I give love and it's reciprocated, when I have a chance to sit alone with my thoughts or a good book, when I sit in the beach head looking out at all that has been gifted us; all this is comforting contentment if I appreciate it. What is happiness?

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  5. Truly said Sherry! Happiness have always been equated to a life of deprivation. Where little things received are welcomed most profoundly. Where whatever little food and material things received are shared with the extended family.

    Hank

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Thank you so much. I will be over to see you soon!