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Thread: Is anyone even happy?

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    Aporia Dysphoria Dirac's Avatar
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    Is anyone even happy?

    Is happiness actually, really, real or is it just a carrot dangling in front of you your whole life?

    Is anyone even happy?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dirac View Post
    Is happiness actually, really, real or is it just a carrot dangling in front of you your whole life?

    Is anyone even happy?
    "Happiness is not a gift of God but merely a loan." – Theodor Fontane

    I'm happy when I attain my goals and unhappy when I don't. It's always a work in progress.

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    Mens bona regnum possidet ferrus's Avatar
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    I think happiness is the absence of sadness, which means it is usually defined in terms of a null position in life - a sort of felicific calculus upon which you sit at a local maxima for some short space of time before being nudged off by something or other.
    Die Logik ist keine Lehre, sondern ein Spiegelbild der Welt. Die Logik ist transcendental. - Wittgenstein

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    Aporia Dysphoria Dirac's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sappho View Post
    "Happiness is not a gift from God but merely a loan." – Theodor Fontane
    Yesterday I visited the memorial of a fishing boat disaster that happened where I live. It had the following inscription on it (in Shetland dialect) which is attributed to one of the widows at the time:

    "You see dey wirna mine. Da loard gae dem tae me fur a time and dan he took dem back ageen."

    ("You see the weren't mine. The lord gave them to me for a time and then he took them back again.")

    I thought it was so sad. They were hers.

    Anyway this is only tangentially related but you reminded me of it.

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    Aporia Dysphoria Dirac's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sappho View Post
    I'm happy when I attain my goals and unhappy when I don't. It's always a work in progress.
    This seems like a surprisingly simple equation and not one I am familiar with at all.

    Quote Originally Posted by ferrus View Post
    I think happiness is the absence of sadness, which means it is usually defined in terms of a null position in life - a sort of felicific calculus upon which you sit at a local maxima for some short space of time before being nudged off by something or other.
    I'm surprised to hear you describe happiness as a null position - my experience is exactly opposite. Sadness is the null position, and a local minimum. Actually, your description of happiness as a maximum seems to disagree with your description of it as a null position, or maybe I misunderstand.

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    Mens bona regnum possidet ferrus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dirac View Post
    I'm surprised to hear you describe happiness as a null position - my experience is exactly opposite. Sadness is the null position, and a local minimum. Actually, your description of happiness as a maximum seems to disagree with your description of it as a null position, or maybe I misunderstand.
    I mean by null position a place where you have little going on except conviviality, or you are chemical enhanced one way or another to have lost consciousness of whatever else that is worrying or pressing in the world around you. At that stage you are kind of on a high. As soon as the world interferes in any way... down you go.
    Die Logik ist keine Lehre, sondern ein Spiegelbild der Welt. Die Logik ist transcendental. - Wittgenstein

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    Aporia Dysphoria Dirac's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ferrus View Post
    I mean by null position a place where you have little going on except conviviality, or you are chemical enhanced one way or another to have lost consciousness of whatever else that is worrying or pressing in the world around you. At that stage you are kind of on a high. As soon as the world interferes in any way... down you go.
    So by "null position" you intend to describe a situation where your 'self' is in some way 'nullified'?

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    Mens bona regnum possidet ferrus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dirac View Post
    So by "null position" you intend to describe a situation where your 'self' is in some way 'nullified'?
    Yes.

    I think being very conscious of oneself and its uncomfortable position in the world is the root cause of a lot of sadness.

    Which is ironic for someone who is as much of a loner and as antisocial as me.
    Die Logik ist keine Lehre, sondern ein Spiegelbild der Welt. Die Logik ist transcendental. - Wittgenstein

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    Aporia Dysphoria Dirac's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ferrus View Post
    Yes.

    I think being very conscious of oneself is the root cause of a lot of sadness.

    Which is ironic for someone who is as much of a loner and as antisocial as me.
    Yeah I think this is basically my problem.

    Although I think you can be very conscious of yourself and not be a loner or antisocial, because I am not particularly either.

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    Mens bona regnum possidet ferrus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dirac View Post
    Yeah I think this is basically my problem.
    I have often wondered if this is because our conscious brains are kind of evolutionary appendages with very little real use, and so whilst in some ways useful to us as animals attempting to survive given very specific skills which allow us to model and track animals, but beyond that are sort of at odds with our essential biological imperatives, and the clash between the two is a cause of much suffering.
    Although I think you can be very conscious of yourself and not be a loner or antisocial, because I am not particularly either.
    Ha, oh I didn't say they were mutual exclusive, and indeed sociality can become a big part of the mix of things happening in the world that make you feel bad about yourself. Only I never seek out those experience where one 'loses oneself' nearly as much as my diatribe would suggest I should.
    Die Logik ist keine Lehre, sondern ein Spiegelbild der Welt. Die Logik ist transcendental. - Wittgenstein

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