the problem of happiness
What an ugly world, what an unexciting new year, what a dull this year, look just how pointless my existence is, see how awfully
uneducated unqualified I am, my prospects in life are bleak, no one is less significant than I am, how terribly socially awkward I can be, I am a sophist, I am idealistically skeptical of every thing I commit myself to(which is enough to disastrous combination) and is there a minimum as to how unloved someone can feel?
I don’t like year ends, I loathe festive seasons, it does absolutely nothing but triggers my andropause. I am envious of happy people. I have stubborn dopamine glands and it’s probably easier to clamber up every volcano in the world bare footed than just be happy. Happiness, who the fuck invented that concept, the word had better not exist at all. It’s reductionistic by nature and contrast so annoyingly with everything else that man prides himself on. The same applies to love, but don’t get me started on it, I’ll save my rants for that the next time we meet. But here, welcome to my whimsical thesis of why the word “happiness” better not exist at all and what should we substitute it with.
My name is man, my species is unreasonably successful through reasoning, I’ve found science, I’ve found math and most importantly, I’ve found the arts. But who is to judge and say that I am better than a poodle or a platypus for experience is life. And when experience is concerned, who can discover a better experience than happiness. Simple the idea may be but grave it’s implications are. An ant with the jaw muscles of a alligator, how disturbing.
Happiness, how does it work exactly? Is the whole theory that surrounds happiness set points irrevocably true or just scientifically cogent. Is there a objective measurement to these set points or is it all arbitrary? It can’t be the former! Happiness is a sensation, sure you can know what leads to this sensation by splitting one’s skull open but you can’t possibly measure how sensational eating a piece of Oreo is. Then it must be arbitrary, but how do we know your methods of scaling of happiness is even briefly similar to mine, how do we know a pair of siamese twins joined by the dick are truly happy people and isn’t paid just to shame first world citizens in front of television screen as they munch on their nachos. Ok, it’s can’t be arbitrary as it only complicates the problem we have on hand so if it can’t be measured what good it does to say anything about it? Infinite regress of depressing questions on happiness? Achievement unlocked, loading stage 2.
Just a neurological causation? If it is, all hail the weed loving hippies and to hell with the wealth loving hypocrites. If it isn’t than is it a part of us at all? By the rules of evolutionary psychology, the clockworks of our primary emotion must all be systematically engraved on your brain as a result of evolution. So the “veins and nerves” that tracks happiness must exist neurologically and it isn’t just “an idea” like you know “evolution”. If it is, is technology not yet advanced enough to entrap humans into a virtual world that distracts them from the brutality of life as robotic hands caress these nerves of ours. Is it not possible? It is possible! How incredibly smart I am! What an ingenious idea, I just defeated life didn’t I? Quick quick, spill out your money you ugly mercenaries, shake the grave of Steve Jobs, he must be most elated, it’s time to fund this machine and defeat life with me! It’s time to play God and conquer life like no one ever did …. oh wait. This machine does exist, it’s called the computer and I am typing on one now and I am still not happy and the same applies to the hippies and they are still not happy with their drugs. A neurological causation? Theoretically yes, practically not really.
So we can’t measure happiness and as lucid as Oliver Sacks tries to be, we are unsure of what causes it. In fact, we are not at all sure what is it or if it exist(not the concept) like your fridge does or more relevantly, fear does. It may very well be a word just to coin a general yet enigmatic feeling that people share and OH MY GOD DID YOU SEE THAT!? YES! THAT! THAT INVISIBLE HORNLESS AND FLIGHTLESS UNICORN GRAZING ON THE FIELD. No, this isn’t a prank! It was there, it really was. Although it’s hornless and flightless I am adamant that it is a unicorn and although I can’t see it but I can feel it, therefore it must be real! REAL! It’s there! Oh god, you are incorrigible, how hard must I try to convince you of it! Why are you such a cynic towards everything why can’t you be gullible like everyone else. You are making me boil and straining my nerves and … oh never mind, it has galloped away to the greener side of the field and I am no longer occupied with your radical expostulation. Let us not be distracted and get back with happiness.
Where were we again? Oh yes, the conclusion. The concept of the word happiness is a troubling one and had better not existed at all. Life will be so much cleaner and more sober by substituting it with either distracted/occupiped or in-distracted/unoccupied. The next time you are unhappy about anything, just think of the invisible unicorn and consequentially, how little you know about happiness to be unhappy about it.