Happiness In today’s world
Happiness In today’s world, it’s a phrase that’s overlooked. On the other hand, happiness has been the subject of philosophical research from the beginning of time. And besides, the goal of life is to enjoy well, not merely to live. Philosophers ponder certain crucial concerns concerning happiness, such as whether or not individuals could be happy and the moral virtues surrounding happiness (Tatarkiewicz). Throughout this essay, I will elucidate more of Aristotle’s, Epicurus and Aquinas’s concept of happiness.
“We are responsible for our happiness.” More than anyone else, contentment is enshrined by Aristotle as a fundamental context of human existence and an aim in itself. As a consequence, he dedicates more room to the subject of happiness than every previous thinker. Living in the middle of the globe during the same timeframe as Mencius, he comes to reasonable conclusions (Kenny). Happiness depends on the cultivation of morality, but while his morals are more idealistic than the Confucian merits, which are primarily social. Aristotle believed that living a truly happy life necessitated the gratification of various conditions, with both physical and mental health. In this manner, he pioneered the concept of happiness in the traditional sense as an innovative area of knowledge.
In essence, Aristotle claims that virtue is attained by preserving the Mean and is the equilibrium amidst two extremes. Although Aristotle’s ideology of Mean is similar to Buddha’s Middle Route, there are notable differences. The Mean was a means of achieving morality for Aristotle; however, the Middle Path was a pleasant lifestyle for Buddha that balanced the fringes of cruel ascetic and sentimental delight seeking. The Middle Route was a bare minimum for a contemplative life, not an origin of morality in itself.
Epicurus believes that the most enjoyable existence is one in which we avoid superfluous cravings and acquire inner peace (ataraxic) by being satisfied with basic stuff and prioritizing philosophical dialogue with companions above pleasures such as meals, beverage, and sex (.Bett) He starts with a point that Plato and Aristotle have made before: that we all want pleasure as a goal in itself, that all other objects are wanted as a way to achieve happiness. “Pleasure is our first and kindred good. It is the starting point of every choice and every aversion, and to it, we always come back, since we make feeling the rule by which to judge of every good thing.”
Alternately, Aquinas is certain in his belief that the only way to real pleasure is to gain divinity (Bradley). No other transitory joy or delight can give us the definitive good we desire. In his Summa Theological, he asserts: “It is impossible for any created good to constitute man’s happiness. For happiness is that perfect good which entirely satisfies one’s desire; otherwise, it would not be the ultimate end if something yet remained to be desired. Now the object of the will, i.e., of man’s desire, is what is universally good, just as the object of the intellect is what is universally true. Hence it is evident that nothing can satisfy man’s will, except what is universally good. This is to be found, not in any creature, but in God alone, because every creature has only participated goodness. Therefore, God alone can satisfy the will of man, according to the words of the Psalms (102:5): “Who alone satisfies your desire with good things.” Therefore, God alone constitutes man’s happiness.”
My belief about happiness is that it revolves around virtues. I strongly believe that happiness doesn’t revolve around worldly pleasures like money, food, sex and many other things. Aristotle completely challenged my perception of happiness for the particular reason that he believes that each and every individual is responsible for their happiness. According to Aristotle, happiness is the purpose of human life since our goals and aspirations eventually play a role in deciding if we’re not happy. After all, we are merely attempting to be happy in our pursuit to attain our objectives and reap the rewards of our desires and needs.
To summarize the whole paper, philosophers for many epochs have different concepts concerning happiness. By analysing the concepts of Aristotle, Aquinas and Epicurus, it is evident that happiness is diverse. I believe that we are responsible for our happiness, as explained by Aristotle.
Tatarkiewicz, Władysław. “Analysis of happiness.” (1976).
Kenny, Anthony. “Happiness.” Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society. Vol. 66. Aristotelian Society, Wiley, 1965.
Bett, Richard. “Nietzsche, the Greeks, and Happiness (with special reference to Aristotle and Epicurus).” Philosophical Topics 33.2 (2005): 45-70.
Bradley, Denis JM. Aquinas on the twofold human good: reason and human happiness in Aquinas’s moral science. CUA Press, 1997.