Asked in PoetryPhilosophy and PhilosophersSociety and Civilization
Is there more happiness or sadness in the world?
February 02, 2012 6:50PM
Happiness and sadness are both emotional responses to a person's current state, or situation. Each person has, at times, more of one than the other. Seldom does anyone have only complete happiness, or complete sadness.
Thoughtfulness is a sea of which happiness and sadness are the waves. All waves of happiness and sadness recede finally into thoughtfulness. It is so because happiness and sadness are reliefs and relapses provided to man by nature so that the concentration, gravity and longevity of thoughtfulness shall not become a black hole unto himself and consume him. John Milton while studying for his M.A., as part of his vivo vaci, had to write poems describing two things that are in perfect contrast to each other. This was how the famous poems Allegro and Il Penseroso were born. Allegro means The Cheerful Man and Il Penseroso means The Thoughtful Man. He aptly termed it The Thoughtful Man, not The Sad Man. When we are not happy we are thoughtful, not sad. When we are not happy, it is to thoughtfulness that we are falling, not to sadness.
Of course there is more sadness in the world. The poor and the rich, civilized and uncivilized, black and white, and most of them are sad. Mainly because everyone is running after happiness. Unhappy people are trying to overcome sadness while happier people are struggling to maintain their happiness. This ultimately leads to sadness. Therefore most of the people are sad. The main reason for sadness is greediness or craving. Except for the few people who have overcome this craving, all are sad. This means there is more sadness in the world.
Let's review: there is dying, attacks, bombing, and who knows what else. This world has been overrun by sadness and despair.
In spite of the ceaseless yearning for happiness, many people do experience true happiness, and sometimes it comes during the bleakest of circumstances. Many people define happiness incorrectly, when what they really mean is *joy* (not entirely the same thing). One can be happy by being content, or satisfied, or find happiness in the joy of others.