Do You Have to be Happy?

by patio34 14 Replies latest watchtower beliefs

  • patio34

    Hi Gary! Thanks for what you said. I had just been thinking to look up the etymology of happy! You saved me the trouble and added extra depth to the discussion!

    Happy is just a peak. I'd much rather be comfortable than happy. Happy comes from a word that means "happen". It's not a condition, it's an event. If happy was related to eating, it would mean full after a great meal. That is an event but not a condition.

    Comfortable is a condition, warm, clean, fed, rested, basic human needs all met. I can live fine without being "happy". My life would suck if I can not live comfortable. ---GaryBuss

    Hi Bigboi! That's great how you and everybody has added to this. It helps to flesh it out with individual viewpoints and lives. It IS a burden to be chasing the high when it's not normal.

    It's like, I think, chasing romance when it's just a part of love. Also, it's a burden to tell people who have a life-threatening disease that they must have a "positive attitude." That gives them another load to carry, if it doesn't come naturally! Believe me, I've lived thru that!



  • bikerchic

    Great question Pat! One I've thought a lot about recently. One of my pet peves is when I hear (what seems mostly to be from women) "I'm not happy", or "he doesn't make me happy". I just don't get it! Like happiness is some kind of narvanna or state to be achieved.

    I've learned that happiness is an inside job.

    Yes there are many things that go on in my life that make me sad, angry and could make me down right miserable if I let them be my main focal point. And damn it sometimes you just have to deal with that broken down car........but it doesn't have to break my spirit. I would say the thing that helps me get through the tough times and keep a good outlook is the same thing that helps me not go over the edge with happiness.........choice! I have a choice, I have a brain and I can make a decision to be or not to be, ________ (fill in the blank).

    Being in the state of happiness all the time would be like being drunk or high and normal would feel foreign, I think normal is really what everyone wants to feel, not high. I like what Gary and others have said, comfortable, that best describes life and the contentment I feel most of the time.


  • garybuss

    When I was younger and inexperienced, at times I gave up comfortable to chase "happy". Then I was uncomfortable and I thought that was "unhappy", but it was not, it was just the absence of comfort.

    Every "unhappy" person needs to focus on being comfortable and identifying all their human needs and get busy getting all those met at one time. It's amazing how unhappy gets lost in comfortable.

    Most people think unhappy is the opposite of happy. It isn't. The opposite of everything is indifference. The opposite of hungry is not full, the opposite of hungry is not thinking about food.

    When a person is unhappy it is not because they are lacking happy, it is usually that they are hungry, or tired, or cold, or worried, or grieving, or in pain, or not getting some basic human need met like the need for social interaction. Loneliness feels like unhappy until a person comes to realize lonely is lack of fulfilling the human need for association with other humans.

    Many people when they feel lonely isolate. That sets up a cycle and if they have addictions that's when an addictive cycle begins. Lonely hurts and a hurting person does not feel like socializing but that's exactly what the cure for the loneliness is.

    So, my philosophy is happy and unhappy are irrelevant to a comfortable and productive life, but production and comfort producing behaviors are required. A comfortable life is a product, not a right. Like the culture is the product of society, the quality of life is the product of the living.

    People with terminal painful diseases can be comfortable and enjoy life and have a great outlook. Most diseases are by chance but I am convinced that outlooks and attitudes are by decision. The mind is an organ with an inlet and an outlet, and it needs to be fed like the rest of the body. A bad function of the stomach nets a belly ache, a bad function of the brain produces anxiety or depression and maybe even delusions or mania.

    Many people I know call comfortable, "happy". That's cool! I know what they mean.

  • Markfromcali
  • bebu

    It's been said that happiness isn't getting what I want, it's wanting what I get. I would extend that to say, being thankful for what I get.

    I think about my eyesight (esp. now that I need reading glasses!) and hearing; how much more difficult life would be without them! I try never to take a sunset for granted...
    Even though we rarely eat out, we eat well at home and no one is hungry or malnourished...
    I am grateful my husband has a steady job, and that I haven't needed to return to work (yet?)...
    I am SOSOSOSO glad that I have a washing machine, dishwasher, fridge, microwave, indoor plumbing, and all kinds of conveniences most of humanity has never known. They have freed my time for reading and thinking... a precious commodity to me...
    I have three noisy, messy kids... but every parent knows their kids are precious. I don't want to think about them as precious only when there's an emergency; I want to treasure them NOW while they're healthy and safe...
    And on it goes.


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