Universal Happiness - 5 Things That We All Want
In regards to people, it can be argued that happiness is a subjective term. Happiness for one person can be brought about by completely different things than for another. Some people might find that being powerful will make them happy and will strive for that. Some people might find that making a difference in the world, or being remembered will make them happy.
This hub is very simple. My argument is that although there are many different ways that people think they can go to bring them happiness, there are certain universal factors that must be met in order to achieve any kind of happiness. The requirements of happiness. Things that every(healthy)body must have before they can call themselves happy.
Although there are different humans, they are all still humans.
After these universal ideas of the requirements of happiness have been established and recognised, I believe law should be reformed to cater for them. These should be the very basis of our law systems across the globe.
1. Not Fearing Your Death
People do not want to die. I dare say that we can all agree that not fearing death is one of our key desires. We will all probably end up doing it, later. We understand that chances are, one day we will die.
But for some, as well as knowing it will happen in the distant future, they have to fear death every day. Fear of murder, disease, famine and old age are the common causes for fearing death. If you know that one of these factors play an active role in your life, if you know that there is a good chance you will be murdered, the knowledge will haunt you persistently.
Thus, I would say that the state of not fearing death is something that everybody wants. Something that everyone can appreciate, and something that brings happiness to those who are in that state. The state of safety.
2. Not Suffering
Suffering is not like fear of death. Because that is just one state of mind. Suffering can take many forms and can be a result of many different things. Suffering does not necessarily lead to death. Hunger, sleep deprivation, fatigue, disease induced pain and feeling cold are all physical examples of suffering. Experiencing something traumatic, the loss of a loved one or guilt over doing something wrong are examples of mental suffering.
Excluding masochists & sadists, who enjoy inflicting themselves or others respectively, with pain, I would hope that everyone can agree that they respect the avoidance of suffering as another universal human desire.
3. Leaving a Legacy - Feeling worth
Feeling like you are worth something seems to me a part of human nature. Everybody wants to feel like they do some sort of good, naturally. It takes a lot of degrading before a person's self esteem is ruined, and even then it is not that they do not want to have worth, it is just that they believe they do not. This makes these people unhappy. We can all agree that feeling worth is an important and necessary part of human life.
Knowing that even if you die today, the fact that you have left something positive to the universe makes your life meaningful, with purpose. Having children, inventing something or helping to, creating art or aiding in the construction of a building or bridge or even looking after something like a pet are all good examples of leaving a legacy in this world.
Although quite abstract, I would say that this is an important part of being human and would reason that everyone else would agree, leaving a physical or conceptual legacy behind for future generations to enjoy or be is a necessary part of being human.
The choice to do what one wishes is a necessary part of happiness. Being forced to do anything, even if it is right by all standards, takes away the pleasure of it. People need to feel like they have the opportunity to do what they wish, that they are in control of their own lives and their own happiness. This might explain why a lot of teenagers end up doing seemingly stupid actions before breaking off from their parents' authority. When it comes to the stage that we feel that we know enough to make our own decisions, we do not want somebody tellings us to do them, even if we would agree, given the choice. As children we accept rules and authority easier, this might be because we do not know any differently, we do not even know the choices that are out there, all we see is that our parents keep us alive, and are grateful for it. Which brings up the next important part of happiness.
Knowledge is a very peculiar thing. We are either content with a total lack of knowledge and being "blissfully ignorant" or we are only content with knowing everything, and will continue to lust for more insatiably. Unfortunately, with blissful ignorance, as soon as we know something, we want to know more, and are taken out of this state. This happens at birth and is a good thing because blissful ignorance would not serve humanity well in surviving on this planet.
Denial of knowledge is very cruel and I hope that most people would agree that freedom of information and knowledge is something that we should all strive for. Knowing things makes us happy. Not knowing leaves us room for worry, doubt and fear.
I think that there are at least 5 universal desires of humanity. Each desire I believe to be necessary to call oneself happy. If one of these are not present, I would argue that total happiness has not been reached.
- Not fearing death
- Not suffering
- Having children/leaving a legacy
As I have mentioned before, I believe that our law systems should be based on these 5 principles. Our law should reinforce these ideas until law would no longer even be necessary. A Utopia will have been achieved.
Note: If anyone would like to add anything that they think is necessary to achieve happiness that is universal to everyone and does not fall under any of the above categories, please comment and I will add it in :)
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