TED Conversations

  • E G
  • Bacau
  • Romania


This conversation is closed.


All people want to be happy , no one is happy because we can't be happy , so why strive to be happy ?: this is the most prominent source of pain (the striving) , actually I think is the single one ........... in fact do we have an escape : can we stop striving for happiness ? I don't think so .

What do you think ?


Closing Statement from E G

Now, I think that we all are more aware of what we think about happiness than before this conversation , that's a good start............. good luck everybody.

Showing single comment thread. View the full conversation.

  • thumb

    Sky F

    • +5
    Sep 20 2011: I think the really big disagreements floating around this thread are simply semantics... People aren't using the same 'happiness' idea. Apples/oranges. Anyway, using the traditional conventional idea of happiness I'll add my two cents:

    I believe happiness is simply contingent upon one's ability to savor.

    Because rich people can be sad and poor people can smile their faces off, it's all dependent on how each individual enjoys their experiences life gives them to the fullest.

    As Oscar Wilde said: 'With freedom, books, flowers, and the moon, who could not be happy?' Hell, even homeless people have access to these things! Or Kurt Vonnegut: 'Enjoy the little things in life, for one day you'll look back and realize they were big things.'

    I was a little kid who had more fun playing with the boxes the toys came in rather than the toys themselves. If I could expand that to my every day life that would be some powerful stuff.
    • Comment deleted

      • thumb

        Sky F

        • +1
        Sep 20 2011: Thanks! Familiar faces! Cool.

        Nice to not be forgotten :)
    • thumb
      Sep 20 2011: Sky, this gets my vote for best answer.
    • Sep 20 2011: Brene Browns talk on Vulnerability quote

      "Honor the ordinary"

      key to happiness is right there and goes along with what you said sky!
    • thumb
      Sep 20 2011: Well said Sky...nice to see you again:>)

      I like that Autumn..."Honor the ordinary".
      When we are mindful and pay attention in the moment, we often see the beauty and joy in everything.

      I am grateful and enjoy washing dishes, because I think of how many people in our world do not even have water or food. I feel grateful that I have clean drinking water, food, and a home.

      This week, I have been pumping water out of the cellar, and it feels, at times annoying and discouraging. The moment I feel discouraged, disappointed or annoyed, I think of the people who do not have a home because of flooding and other disasters. I come back to the thought..."at least the water is only in my basement, and I am grateful for that. I think/feel that gratitude is very connected with happiness/contentment.
      • thumb
        Sep 20 2011: No one would have ever known you were facing such a miserable thing as a flooded basement from reading your entries this week. Same old consistent kindness and wisdom all week long. This is a good indicator that a world view is working - when it works during the annoying stuff. I hope you find dry land in the basement soon!
        • thumb
          Sep 20 2011: Thanks Debra,
          Like I've said so many times...I focus on the positive. One of my favorite songs is...
          "Accentuate the positive...eliminate the negative":>)

          Yes, I've had 8-10 inches of water in the basement. Luckily, I live in northern Vermont, rather than central or southern Vermont, where there has been incredible damage from flooding...it is a disaster. Many people are isolated because of road washouts, and we may consider those the lucky ones, because many watched their homes float down river!
          It's difficult to even dry out and catch up because the rain continues. I am aware of the disaster and challenges many in the state face, and I am so grateful that my home is still standing, and the water is ONLY in the basement.
      • Sep 20 2011: I too had water in my basement-about a foot and I felt so grateful that nature did what I couldn't do in clearing out items I was not ready to get rid of.

        It was a blessing in disguise for me- all though there were many people devastated by the flood, I pray that if this is their dark night of the soul, they find what they need to grow and make a blessing out of a disaster.

        "the things we own end up owning you" Chuck Palahnuik from Fight Club
        • thumb
          Sep 20 2011: HA! Makes me smile Autumn:>)
          Maybe that's what this is all about...my basement simply needed cleaning!!! LOL:>)

          I agree Autumn, that we can usually find the light at the end of the tunnel (a blessing in disguise as you say). It is true that disaster and trauma often bring us to a new and different place in ourselves.

          When I was young, I sometimes struggled with impatience, frustration, pain, etc., and at some point in my life, I realized that everything was/is an opportunity to learn, grow and evolve. So, I started moving more directly to the learning and growth, and not staying with feelings of disappointment and discouragement for very long. I still have moments of "woe is me", but I don't see any point in staying in that mind set for longer than a few seconds:>)
        • thumb
          Sep 20 2011: Something joyful for Colleen and for Autumn as they face the yuck of drying out their basements. (I once had a sump pump quit and allow the basement of a brand new house to flood so I can relate- all my stuff was still in boxes in the basement!) I just went looking for Colleen's song!

        • thumb
          Sep 20 2011: Thanks for that link Debra...it's a good one huh? Brings tears of joy to my eyes because I started singing that song a LOT at the time of my near fatal head/brain injury, when I was also going through a divorce, ending 24 years of marriage, was diagnosed with cancer, and both my parents died. I often felt lost, and in a whirlwind of emotions, which were so confusing at times. I took one step at a time, and sang that song a LOT:>)

          Water in the basement? HA!
          When I remember where I've been in my life journey, and what others face in their life experiences, water in the basement is nothing. Perhaps that is one key to unlocking the experience of happiness/contentment. How important is the issue that we percieve to cause unhappiness? How much energy do we want to give to that challenge?
    • thumb

      E G 10+

      • 0
      Sep 20 2011: You are right : perhaps the single point of disagreement is the semantics and even more i would say the idea that by happiness we all should understand the same thing : why don't we do it ?
      • thumb
        Sep 20 2011: Eduard,
        Perhaps we don't all "do it" the same because our experiences, interpretation, perceptions, expectations, etc., are apparently different. We are all offering our own interpretations and experiences, and many of our perceptions seem to overlap. Some do not and that's ok.
        • thumb

          E G 10+

          • 0
          Sep 22 2011: Maybe but we all seek the truth I guess .
    • thumb

      . . 100+

      • 0
      Sep 22 2011: " Happiness is simply contingent upon one's ability to savor " - this from Sky.

Showing single comment thread. View the full conversation.