Sunday, May 15, 2011

An open question for the internet

My sister is visiting me this week, and perhaps in reaction to the 3 weeks previous I spent alone, we've been doing a lot of talking. And since she's recently returned from L'Abri, and I have in the past shown some interest in philosophy, we've been talking a lot about the purpose of life, the value of entertainment, plans for the future, and suchlike. Your usual basic conversation topics. :D

These conversations have led me to the realization that my overall goal towards life is to make sure I enjoy it. 

That's not quite as narcissistic and lazy as it sounds, because I know to be able to enjoy my life I have to be able to look back at my individual days and say "that was a good day." And to be able to call a day "good" when it's over, I need to be productive within the day.

But it's still pretty narcissistic and lazy.

So I guess my question is this. Is it wrong to be trying to work towards feeling happy most of the time? (Ironically, since I figured out I'd been doing this I haven't felt particularly delighted with my life.) Is it especially wrong since most of my coping mechanisms seem to be lazy (sleeping 9 hours a night) or especially self-serving (writing fun things and reading?) It's just that after spending so many years unhappy I am very jealous of my emotional happiness, and the methods I've found to attain it. But should I look for more useful, productive methods of finding happiness? 


Anonymous said...

I'd say the answer to your question is tied to what you believe is your life's purpose. So, what do you believe your purpose is?

Snazel said...

To be the person God intended me to be?

Pine Cone Boy said...

I'm trying to think like the Ting for this one, and I'm thinking he'd say something about Aristotle saying that to be happy is our telos. But perhaps FEELING happy is not the same as BEING happy? "Happiness is an activity of soul in accordance with perfect virtue."

OK, to make a long story short, I don't think trying to feel happy most of the time is a bad thing. But I think trying to do the right thing should take precedence? Because that's where a state of real happiness comes from.

Not that I follow this plan very often. :P

Bahnree said...

Wow, you really don't shirk at the big questions, do you?

Snazel said...

@PCB: Now if only I knew how to do the right thing without wrecking myself. :P

@Bahnree: When you're going to go for a complete breakdown of confidence and emotions, why use a small question? That's what I always say!

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