Thursday, July 15, 2010

Day 253: is human happiness a hoax?

I don't mean to sound depressive, but it has occurred to me over the last little while that lasting happiness is quite a difficult thing to achieve as a human, and that it may not even exist at all. It seems that while there are many opportunities for enjoyment and experiencing joy in human life, these moments are often fleeting. Achieving solid progress is a difficult mission in itself, and even if you manage to get somewhere or do something that you think will make you feel better about yourself and the world, something always comes along to change things or make things difficult again. It's quite an exhausting thought. I suppose that's why wise people so often recommend living in the moment; if the moment is good, appreciate it now because it will soon be gone. It's funny though, as humans we insist on continuing to try to achieve the impossible. We try to bring lasting happiness into our lives by making things concrete; accumulating concrete things like houses - presumably because they seem unlikely to disintegrate before our eyes; promising our love to another "forever" in marriage; creating art and music, or even just doing our work, to cement our existence and worth in history. We try to create things we can hold onto, when in actual fact we can hold onto nothing. It makes a good case for drinking booze of an evening: forget the long term effects, forget tomorrow, drink now and enjoy the moment. Maybe. Maybe not. Something to think about.


  1. "Happiness is the lucky pane of glass you carry in your head. It takes all your cunning just to hang on to it, and once it's smashed you have to move into a different sort of life". Carol Shields, 'Unless'.

  2. 'Happiness is a Warm Gun' Lennon