Brief thoughts on Happiness, and the song Happy

herodotus-3In truth, I count no man happy until his death, for no man can know what the gods may have in store for him. He who unites the greatest number of advantages, and retaining them to the day of his death, then dies peaceably, that man alone, sire, is in my judgment entitled to bear the name of ‘happy.’ But in every matter it behooves us to mark well the end: for oftentimes God gives men a gleam of happiness, and then plunges them into ruin.

The part of that quote that strikes me the most is the gleam of happiness and then plunged into ruin. I think that is one of the aspect of being alive more than anything that  is the most difficult to cope with. There is never a moment where we are safe. I have grown to feel that every major piece of art or literature is a meditation on the lack of safety and the void that is at the core of human life.  I feel like that void is felt all the more poignantly now that we are constantly embroiled in activity that doesn’t open us to new insights about the world around us. A lot of what we do every day doesn’t promote free thinking and expressions of individuality. I think for this reason more than any other I am suspicious of people who are happy. Of course real happiness does exist, and it is a most fleeting sort of thing. What I mean are those who play at being happy and satiated and actually buy into their own deceptions. I think so much of what we call happiness revolves around chasing socially acceptable and lobotmized goals or material possesions.

1972529_10151985259452504_5324240347438511443_nBtw I really detest that song Happy by Pharell.  I kind of feel that when a song written for a children’s movies because this popular there is something wrong. Perhaps a collective attempt at trying to recapture youth  through breif outburst of frivolity, and annoying videos. I don’t know. Actually repeating “because I am Happy” over and over again makes it seem like the person in question is trying to convince themselves. I am almost willing to bet that  the wheels on the buss go round and round might be a hit song in the making, because everyone can find 5 minutes to film themselves moving seizure like along to its gentle almost bucolic melody.

Anyways What do you think any thoughts?


  1. I think I am a generally happy person, but what you said ” I think so much of what we call happiness revolves around chasing socially acceptable and lobotmized goals or material possesions.”, yeah I think what people call happy is closer to excitment, My new shoes make me so happy!” Nah it’s fleeting excitment that you feel, not lasting happiness. I think happiness is found in the people around us and being grateful for what we already have.


  2. That quote sounds like it’s from the Thomas Hardy school of philosophy. (Read one of his books if you haven’t already, and you’ll understand why.) Happiness is a state of mind, just like anything else. Overall, I’m happy with my life (and very grateful for what I have), even though I get annoyed sometimes. But I do sometimes have to remind myself of that fact.

    I can take or leave the song.


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