“What do you want in life?”
“I just want to be happy.”
In our world the greatest thing that anyone can pursue with all their might is happiness. One can just simply not live a life without having some sort of happiness to be relieved of one's hardships by. That is, if one really knows what happiness is.
Try to define happiness in your own words; I am quite sure you will be able to come up with an alternative word that is better suiting for your description of happiness, given that you have a good vocabulary.
For example, random Joe says “happiness is that feeling you feel when you are sitting in a park feeling the breeze and the smell of fresh cut grass” well Random Joe the word you’re looking for there is “peace”.
Even in its linguistic sense the word happiness is in itself is extremely hollow, like a well at an oasis that to the onlooker is a thing of charm, anyone would chase it but no one would reach it but even if someone happened to take the trouble to approach it somehow, they’d witness that within depths lie many other words that give it it’s beauty, they’d see how the well feeds off of its inhabitants like a parasite with the sole purpose of deceiving the travelers of the scorching desert.
The word has been used so many times it has lost all sense of meaning, take any word, say it like 10 times, it will lose its meaning, the forced notion of the society to pursue happiness has done nothing short of the opposite.
Now coming to the deeper sense of the word and what it means to us on an individual level.
Let me ask you, what is the need for happiness? Why do you need happiness in life? Why do people say that we should strive for happiness?
Think about any one of these and you will find how irrelevant and overrated happiness is.
Another thing that people throw around is that in order to be happy one should experience sadness. I for one might not want that transaction, many wouldn’t. Why this so called “emotion” does is dependent on another, why does it not have the ability to stand alone like the feeling of contentment for example.
I see the person who tries to run before happiness as someone who is trying to hold on to a bar of soap, the more you try to hold it tight the quicker it’ll slip away. People should know that in the spectrum of emotions there lies a grey area, where you feel nothing, you’re neutral, numb. Emotions are complex you can’t just say be happy or don’t be sad. Suffering indeed is important to understand how it is when you are at ease, but the absence of suffering does not translate to happiness.
The idea of “being happy” is theoretical, imaginary and of no practical use. And personally if humans have to pursue something, it should be contentment.