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What Are the 2 Types of Happiness

Updated on March 23, 2014
Chuck Bluestein profile image

At age 16 I was a volunteer at a hospital bacteriology lab. I became a chemist for U.S. government. Then I studied health & related fields.


This is from the article The New and Improved Happiness and How to Tell If You are Happy. Woman jumping for joy.
This is from the article The New and Improved Happiness and How to Tell If You are Happy. Woman jumping for joy. | Source
This is from the article 6-Childlike Attitudes for Carefree Happiness.
This is from the article 6-Childlike Attitudes for Carefree Happiness. | Source
This picture is from the Dr. Bill Wooten article called Happiness.
This picture is from the Dr. Bill Wooten article called Happiness. | Source

2 Types of Happiness

What are the 2 types of happiness. Some people feel that the purpose of humans to be alive is to learn. I propose that we are here to learn the difference in the 2 types of happiness.

This article is being written on March 20, 2014. This is the first day of spring this year and also the International Day of Happiness. It was established by the United Nations General Assembly on 28 June 2012.

Dr. Martin Seligman (PhD in psychology) was elected president of the American Psychological Association by the widest margin ever. He literally wrote the book on psychology (college textbook on psychology). Years ago he created Positive Psychology to study what makes people happy. I read his book called Authentic Happiness.

But recently he has become disappointed with the word happiness. He is more interested in meaning and purpose in life. The book Designing Positive Psychology: Taking Stock and Moving Forward says on page 116:

It's worth noting, however, that scientists still debate how to adequately define the term "happiness." Should it be applied hedonically, as experienced pleasure and/or satisfaction with life. Or is it something more. Something that concerns meaning and purpose [eudaimonic view]....

They have realized that it is hard to study happiness if they do not know what it is. Now the 2 types of happiness that I am talking about do not have names. So I can call them temporary or permanent happiness (even though being alive is not permanent) or happiness that comes from the outside or the inside.

People are very familiar with the first one. There is a saying "Money can't buy happiness but...." They have added different buts to the rest of it. Say that someone is just making enough money to get by. Then he wins $10 million in a lottery. People are familiar with that kind of happiness.

Studies show that after 2 years people are no more happy than they were before they won the money. Actually I know a woman that inherited money and used it to buy drugs. Then her multiple sclerosis became a problem and she has trouble walking.

I also know a guy who got an income from supplemental social security and uses it to take meth and he has serious problems now. But people can imagine winning enough money where they never need to worry about money again.

After Elon Musk became a billionaire he decided he did not need to be concerned about money anymore. So he decided that he would solve some of the world's problems like living off of sustainable energy instead of energy sources from dead plant and animals like oil and coal. Also he wants to establish a colony on mars.

Why? They just started a new series on TV called The 100. It takes place 97 years after a nuclear war has destroyed all life on the planet earth. So they have lived in space ships for 97 years. But now they are running out of essentials for life in a few months.

So they decide to explore an unknown planet by sending down 100 juvenile delinquents (hence the name of the series). I just saw the pilot. They learned that there are 30 foot sea serpents in a river. Then one boy got inpaled by a big spear so they know that they are not alone on the planet. So with what Elon Musk is trying to do, the above will not happen to us.

Now there is a funny thing with this happiness that comes from a nice life. Say that a guy is married and has 3 kids. He loves his wife and kids immensely. Then say there is another guy who is alone and no one loves him.

Many feel that the first person would be happier. But say a friend says to the second guy that his wife and kids were in a car accident and died. He would not be bothered. He would just say that he does not have a wife and kids. Say a friend says that to the first guy. It would be expected for him to be totally devastated.

So the more you have, the more you can lose. Say one person is 60 and he has a wife, kids and grandchildren. He is also rich. So he loves spending time with them and spending money on them. Also he loves playing golf. That sounds like a nice or happy way to live at that age.

Now say another person at age 60 is homeless and does not have any close friends or relatives. That does not sound like a nice way to live at that age. So say the first guy goes to the doctor and is told that he is going to die in a few days. He will start thinking about not spending any time with his family or playing golf and he will lose all of his money.

So he will be devastated. Now the second guy faints and is taken to the hospital. He is told that he will die in a few days. But he did not enjoy his life recently. So he is not really upset. So the first kind of happiness has an opposite. So this is the kind of happiness that people know all about.

The Second Type of Happiness

This second type of happiness automatically gets rid of mental problems like with what happened with Eckhart Tolle. Now even if someone has a lot of meaning and purpose in their life, they are going to be very upset when they are dying. Gautama Buddha was first a prince. His father had decided to hide from him all the suffering that he could. But then Gautama decided to go out and learn about the world outside of the castle.

He came across a guy who was very sick and asked about him. He was told that some people get sick and that is what was wrong with him. Later he came across someone very old. He asked if this person was sick. He was told that this person was old and everyone gets old.

Then he came across a dead person and asked about him. He was told that this guy is dead and this happens to every person without exception. So Gautama was very upset about all this. So he left his pregnant wife and renounced his royalty and went searching for the answer. Now billions of people know about him 2,500 years later.

Eckhart Tolle said:

Life will give you whatever experience is most helpful for the evolution of your consciousness.

So if someone's wife and children die in a car accident, this is the most helpful for the evolution of their consciousness? Also what is that anyway? People do not have to believe in death for it to happen to them.

So it could be that this evolution of consciousness happens whether someone believes in it or not. People know what evolution is, but what is consciousness. This meaning for this word is not even in the dictionary.

What this word is referring to is what others call the soul. The thing that leaves a body when it dies. Three hundred years before Jesus Christ was born, Socrates taught that the most important thing in your life is your immortal soul. This is what he was referring to when he said "Know thyself." He was executed for teaching this.

Doesn't everyone teach us that you get happiness by creating a very comfortable lifestyle? Eckhart Tolle says about this 2nd type of happiness:

You find peace not by rearranging the circumstances of your life, but by realizing who you are at the deepest level.

Bill Gates and Warren Buffet are brilliant people and among the richest people in the world. They may not agree with the above. But their future is the same future as Adolf Hitler. They are both going to die and that will make the people that love them very sad.

But if this thing exists after you die, then it also exists now. So what would the Christian or Catholic religion call this second type of happiness. They call it the beatific vision of the soul. This happiness comes from the soul and the soul is eternal or permanent.

The soul is inside of you so this happiness comes from the soul and is not dependent on the world. The body is what perceives the physical world. So this is beyond the boundaries of psychology since they do not believe in a soul.

The theory in yoga and Buddhism is that at the core of a person is this thing that does not die. Also its nature is perfect peace, endless love and infinite happiness. This happiness does not have an opposite. There is no state of infinite misery.

Note that Eckhart Tolle was in a state of severe depression for years. Then something happened and he became extremely happy with this second type of happiness. This happened years ago but that state of extreme happiness is still there for him.

But what makes a difference is not learning about this thing but experiencing it. Eckhart Tolle went for years where he was very depressed and then he felt this second type of happiness. You can also call this inner core of a person heaven. The way to find this true self is by removing all the dirt that is covering it up.

You can even ask why does a person want to feel peace, love and happiness. Maybe because this is his true nature. I saw a guy on a TED talk video. He said that he was clinically depressed for many years.

He explained that if something depressing happens and you get depressed then it is normal, not clinical depression. Note that the clinical definition of clinical depression is very complex. It takes a doctor to diagnose it and different doctors can disagree. Did you know that doctors have diagnosed thousands of people with cancer that did not have it.

This guy on this video had his own definition of clinical depression. He said that if everything in your life is going right and you are depressed then that is clinical depression. So let us compare this to this second type of happiness. If everything in your life is going wrong and you feel completely happy, then this is the second type of happiness.

You could also call it unreasonable happiness. George Bernard Shaw said:

The reasonable man adapts himself to the world; the unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore all progress depends on the unreasonable man.

Christians believe in a heaven after you die. This second type of happiness is feeling that heaven while you are still alive. In fact the Indian saint and poet, Kabir, says something about this. Kabir says:

The idea that the soul will join with the ecstatic
just because the body is rotten -
that is all fantasy.
What is found now is found then.
If you find nothing now,
you will simply end up with an apartment in the City of Death.
And if you make love with the divine now,
in the next life you will have the face of satisfied desire.

So he is saying that if you want to be in heaven after you die, then you need to get there while you are still alive. Where did the idea of heaven and hell come from? Before the Christian religion, the religion known as Zoroastrianism existed around 600 BC. It was created by Zoroaster.

It was once the state religion of the Achaemenid, Parthian, and Sasanian empires. This religion believed in one supreme God. It taught that there was heaven and hell. If you did more good than bad, then you entered heaven when you died. If you did more bad than good then you entered hell when you died. Most of the people in this religion joined the Christian religion.

Many beliefs from this religion were adopted by the Muslim religion. The Muslim religion of Islam did not start until around 600 AD. Please note that these religions mentioned above have to do with happiness after you die. I am not suggesting that you join one of the religions. I am pointing out that some people believe that you still exist after you die and you want to happy at that time also.

Here are some articles that talk about practical things that you can do t feel this 2nd type of happiness. One is, Is the Key to Happiness Being in the Present Moment. Another one is, Does Yoga Cause People to Look More Beautiful. This may sound like a shallow article but it goes more deeper than this. It explains that yoga was not created for women to do it, but women have made yoga a multi-billion dollar industry. Yoga is actually a science to raise consciousness (make you feel good).

Another article about the above is called The Heart of Buddhism. The funny thing about this article is that if you go below the surface you find that Buddhism is very similar to yoga. This is why even though Buddha lived in India, Buddhism became very popular in the countries surrounding India but not India.

Here is an example of how similar they are. If you look up Milarepa on Wikipedia, it says that he is a yogi that is very important to Buddhism. There is no mention of Buddhist or yoga, but it mentions yogi and Buddhism.

Consciousness is no-thing - Peter Russell and Eckhart Tolle. This video says that consciousness is not a thing

Evolution of Awareness - A Conversation with Neale Donald Walsch and Eckhart Tolle

Prem Rawat talks about the joy that comes from the outside and the joy that comes from the inside


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    • Chuck Bluestein profile imageAUTHOR

      Chuck Bluestein 

      5 years ago from Morristown, AZ, USA


    • Eiddwen profile image


      5 years ago from Wales

      A wonderful hub which leaves much food for thought.

      Voted up and thanks for sharing,



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