Chapter2DifferentPerspectives of Happiness towards the Greatness of Society For thischapter, all the cited studies and literatures that are related to the study ofhappines will be briefly introduced and discussed throughout this chapter andalse serves as a guide for the researchers in developing the paper.
Perspectives ofHappinessWeall have our own perceptions when looking at the world. Like on how we definehappiness. We do not really have the exact definition of happiness but wedefine happiness as a positive emotion when we feel love, affection,contented,gratification and so on. But if we base on biblical and scientificaldefinitionof happiness, we can broaden our knowledge in terms of defining happiness. According to Tim J. Keller who is an American pastor,Theologian and Christian apologist, He illustrate in his sermon, “The searchfor Happiness”.
We must desire to be concerned about God than our ownhappiness. The more Happiness we experience – especially on the inside the moreour lives will bear the fruit of the Spirit. Happiness is not found in externalcircumstances, it means that seeking the true joy that only God can give.1Here is the irony: the less you’re concerned aboutyour happiness and the more you’re concerned about him (God), the happier youget. This is not a trick.
You can’t say, ‘Oh, great. I have it. I come to God,and I say this and this and this.’ You cannot bandy with the omnipotent andomniscient Lord of the universe.
‘Aim at heaven and you will get earth thrown in.Aim at earth and you get neither.2 Meike Bartels and Phillip Koellinger professors atAmsterdam found out the three genetic variations for happiness. Happiness mightbe on our DNA.
It is how this world works, how we exert so much effort and inreturn we can take what we invest. According to Bartels, happiness is bothenvironmental and genetic factors. People are differently genetically.Furthermore, happiness is very complex it is a choice that anyone can make.Cultivating thankfulness and gratitude is a scientifically-backed way toincrease happiness, and it’s firmly within your control to choose to be moregrateful.3Bartelsays:Research has demonstrated that differences in DNAmethylation are related to happiness. This means it is not just the genes andnot just the environment, but an interaction between these two that isresponsible for the feeling of happiness.
4 Nietzsche and Callicleson Happiness and Pleasure Urstad discussed about the similaritiesof Happiness and Pleasure according to Nietzsche and Callicles. Urstad saidthat there is a little doubt in Nietzsche’s famous doctrines that was inspiredby the character named Callicles in Plato’s book-Gorgias. According to Nietzsche, pleasure is known as a “particular sensation marked by the absenceof any pain or discomfort”5Pleasurecannot be separated from pain, they are like twins, you cannot have pleasurewithout pain and vice versa. Nietzsche states that pleasure in pain are “so knotted together that whoever wants asmuch as possible of the one, must also have as much as possible of the other.”6Far from discouraging, or a recipe formisery, Nietzsche thinks this “play of resistance and victory”, this overcomingof moments of pain and suffering, is how the feeling of joy (Lust) is attained. Joy, for him, seemsto be closely akin to happiness, it is the conscious state of being manultimately desires.
5 What is important to see about Nietzsche’s conception ofjoy or happiness is not only that it contains a component of pain (“in all joypain is included”7),but that it is intimately bound up with the notion of power.8Let’snow discuss Callicle’s perspective on pleasure, he does not believe thatpleasure is free from pain or difficult work or effort. Callicles’ subsequent endorsement indicatesthat he upholds a remedial or replenishment conception of pleasure, one whichinvolves the assuaging of a pain or the filling of a lack. Pleasure (drinking),in other words, entails the acceptance of distress (thirst), since the pleasureis proportional to the magnitude of the lack that is being replenished.
But, forCallicles, pleasure is not only connected to the experience of pain at theconceptual level of desire-satisfaction. He also takes pain or distress as partand parcel of his conception of the happy life. 9 Downside Happiness InAdam Barkman’s article he sees Negative Happiness is an absence of suffering inthat we can simply understand that it is an incomplete understanding ofhappiness. In his article there are two philosophers that talks about negativehappiness. First is Buddha’s philosophy state that negative happiness is anescape route for suffering or truth.
While Epicurus’ philosophy tells us thatvirtue is the end of happiness because it’s tolerating treat people for being asource of one’s happiness. Adam Barkman says that negative happiness isconnected with strong desires. In which he/she have done a bad deed toexperience happiness. He also states that the law of karma interconnects allthings. Both Adam Barkman’s philosophers emphasized that suffering is a great evilbut neither of them provide sensible information about true happiness, sincetrue happiness is a form of positive happiness, which insist that not only thegoodness of pleasures but there are also two factors. First, happiness is foundsubstantial, enduring things and can only be attained by a substantial,enduring self. Buddha’s denial on substantial reality hinders Buddhism from thequest for true happiness.
On the other hand, Epicurus agreed that there issubstantial reality. He states that happiness requires something likePlatonic-Christian conception of the self. Second, happiness needs virtue to bevalued people’s own sake.
Buddhism cannot maintain regards on virtue while atthe same time denying substantial reality because in the end they follow theirown assumption. While, Epicurus admits that virtue is merely means to endhappiness because it’s tolerating to treat people as a source of one’shappiness. About positive and negative happiness, we can say positive happinesssees true happiness while negative happiness sees true happiness in avoidanceof suffering. Also negative happiness is an incompletely understanding towardstrue happiness.10 1HungWhelchel.
https://tifwe.org/biblical-definition-of-happiness/. 8 August 20162HungWhelchel.
https://tifwe.org/biblical-definition-of-happiness/. 8 August 2016 3Darius Foroux. https://medium.com/the-mission/how-to-be-happy-a-scientific-perspective-67c5812de79a. 10 July 2017. 4Darius Foroux.
https://medium.com/the-mission/how-to-be-happy-a-scientific-perspective-67c5812de79a.10 July 2017. 5Friedrich Nietzsche, The Birthof Tragedy, trans. by Walter Kaufmann, in Basic Writings of Nietzsche (NewYork: Modern Library, 2000), 7.6Ibid.7Nietzsche, Will to Power, 658; see also ThusSpoke Zarathustra, trans. by Walter Kaufmann, in The Portable Nietzsche (New York: Penguin Books, 1976), IV 19.
8Nietzsche, Will to Power, 688; Daybreak,trans. by R. J.
Hollingdale (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1997), 113;On the Genealogy of Morals, trans. byWalter Kaufmann, in Basic Writings ofNietzsche (New York: Modern Library, 2000), III 10. 9SeeNietzsche and Callicles on Happiness, Pleasure, and Power inhttp://www.
kritike.org/journal/issue_8/urstad_december2010.pdf 10Adam Barkman.
Negative Happiness. Article,Volume 3, Number 1, 72-77.June 2009.