Understanding The (True) Desire to Live Happily as Humans

Understanding The (True) Desire to Live Happily as Humans

Understanding The (True) Desire to Live Happily as Humans. Desire is the cornerstone of ethics and the essence of man. The “human spirit” is defined by effectiveness rather than logic.

Man is a creature of desire, or more accurately, desire is the very core of man, not merely a symptom of his suffering or his limitlessness. Desire is a person’s capacity for action. Each item makes an effort to continue existing in accordance with its capacity to do so.

Instead of being a pain to live with or a lack of, desire is an affirmative movement.

To unfold its existence, that is, to simultaneously protect it and grow it, requires ongoing effort. All of our specific desires are ways for us to express and fulfill our initial desire to endure.

Understanding The (True) Desire to Live Happily as Humans

All desire is basically a desire for oneself, a desire to fulfill oneself. This obscure object of desire is me. Thus, the object of desire is secondary with respect to desire itself, or, in other words, desire is the creator of the “desirability” of objects. Hence, nothing is good or bad in itself. The desire that leads us towards her makes us find her good. We do not desire things because they are good: they seem good to us because we desire them. It is the subject himself as desire who is the source of the definition of goods and the foundation of values.

Happiness cannot be thought of in an egoistic way, as Kant correctly warned. Our individual destiny is linked to that of all humanity. The happiness of some cannot be built on the misery and exploitation of others: social justice is necessary.

If my existence is always threatened, I am always hungry, or I have to work non-stop to earn just what allows me to survive, or if fear and worry never leave me, it is obvious that I cannot advance in the search for happiness.

The technique serves our needs; as soon as our desires increase—desires that are often “neither natural nor necessary”—they demand their satisfaction and a greater degree of cooperation between men. But this cooperation is often sought for selfish ends.

Let us remember the lesson of wisdom and civility of the ancient philosophers: there is no happiness or peace for men if they reject the moderation of desires and respect for justice.

True life teaches us that desires must be passed through the sieve of reason to eliminate all those that are neither natural nor necessary, all those that are vain, artificial, and superfluous.

This is the prerequisite for achieving the absence of soul disturbance, i.e. happiness.

Understanding The (True) Desire to Live Happily as Humans

Since pleasure does not necessarily mean happiness and the absence of suffering does not necessarily imply pleasure, it is obvious that there is a distinction between the two. Avoiding suffering is not being happy.

According to stoicism, a person who is a slave to his passions neither enjoys happiness nor is free. Man must restrict his aspirations to those that are dependent upon him and to those things he knows he can own and maintain in order to be wise. He only has control over one thing, his will, which is all that is dependent upon him. The “delimitation of our own area of freedom, of an impregnable island of autonomy in the heart of the enormous river of events, of fate,” as P. Hadot accurately noted, “depends on me.”

When it comes to external causes and destiny, acquiescence is synonymous with the interior freedom that is our capacity to judge. So what, in the Stoics’ opinion, is the key to happiness?

It consists mainly of knowing how to utilize my will effectively and simply seeking what I already have and what occurs to me. In other words, I shouldn’t want things that are out of my reach. Because everything is essential, it serves no use to struggle against what is or to have different desires from what actually occurs; doing so would only make us sad.

“Don’t wait for things to happen the way you want them to; instead, strive to be happy with how things turn out,” says the principle of consolation.

Understanding The (True) Desire to Live Happily as Humans

To be wise, you have to learn to love fate.

The “life according to the logos” that is found in excellence, the highest human virtue, is where happiness is found, according to Aristotle. Even though it is true that thought sets us free from the whims of fate, man is not inherently quick-thinking, reasonable, or spontaneous.

Potentially, not actually, man can only become reasonable. The nature of man—what is necessary to understand if, as Aristotle defined it, happiness consists of living in accordance with one’s nature or in the progressive development of one’s being—is that of a potentially reasonable animal, capable of becoming one, provided one makes an effort to exercise and develop one’s thought.

Man must come to terms with his true nature and realize his potential by living up to it.

Desire grows or shrinks, bringing in either happiness or misery. The improper use of imagination and a fragmented, muddled understanding of our desire is the root causes of passionate servitude. Passivity is the expression of a non-autonomous desire; it is the detachment of actions from those that depend on us but also on something outside of us.

Bondage refers to a muddle in our understanding rather than a deficiency of will. Our happiness and suffering are influenced by the way we relate to and are knowledgeable about the things around us.

Liberation is necessary to experience joy and happiness, with the aim of enabling the person to truly live independently, in accordance with his or her unique nature and principles.

We achieve complete satisfaction in the truth and are free from passions when we are aware of our emotions clearly and definitively and when the concepts we have about them are entire and totalizing. Understanding our passions and incorporating the subject of our passion into a greater system of things allows us to be freed from its alluring force since the object of our passion loses its uniqueness and dignity.

Joy appeases the torments that can result from passions, by making our effectivity the object of true knowledge. True knowledge, therefore, frees the desire for false goods: it does not suppress it,

Desire must not be repressed, even in the disguised form of its rationalization.

On the contrary, it must open up, develop and become lucid, that is, reflect on itself. Only in passion is desire blind: the passionate man is alienated, diminished, and sad. The release will be increased power.

All true knowledge is joy; the desire grows stronger with knowledge; it results from knowledge rather than repression of desire. What the free man achieves is permanent joy, that is, happiness, and self-satisfaction understood as self-love, which is neither egoism nor narcissism. These are universal values that are available to all men the moment they are led by reason.

The joy of existence is acting according to one’s own nature and rules, from a place of generosity and friendship. The free and happy man is both fully himself and always open to others.

Understanding The (True) Desire to Live Happily as Humans

Ethics is the study of the routes through which the experience of life might be guided toward happiness.

The pursuit of freedom is also referred to as ethics because it is inherent in the concept of a happy life. Happiness that is forced would not be real happiness; instead, it would be misery. Happiness must be experienced as freedom, just as freedom must be felt as happiness and satisfaction. Politics is affected by ethics in the sense that the personal and reflective pursuit of happiness can only be made feasible by the development of a political framework for social interaction.

According to the desire theory of happiness, you experience happiness and satisfaction when you are able to fulfill your desires. Let’s say I want to be happy, and when my desire is granted, I am happy. As a result, desires can make a person happy.

If your other desires are satisfied, you cannot complain, so you must be considered happy. You fall short of demonstrating your discontent. Or you have a want and discover that the object of your desire is in some way excellent or desirable.

You acquire something excellent when you obtain your desired object, and we may assume that this nice thing makes you happy in the sense of being satisfied and gratified. You experience that when something is good.

One must draw a distinction between conditional and unconditional desires with regard to the likelihood of generally fulfilling one’s desires. The fulfillment of a conditional want causes the desire to disappear. Consider the situation when I want ice cream but don’t have any. I no longer want it after I obtain it. I want to be a good father, which is an unwavering desire. Because an unconditional desire won’t go away no matter what I do, I cannot satiate it in the same manner that I satiate my conditional need. This demonstrates that some desires, if not all of them, can be fully satiated. So, it would be exaggerated to claim that no desire can ever be satiated.

Desires and satisfaction are dependent on life’s circumstances, as it is easy to see. Two boundaries exist, namely, you cannot desire what you have or what you cannot have. The traditional formulation of the first boundary is: You love what you have and you desire what you do not have when the object in question is desirable.

When the desired object is unavailable we say the agent hopes to get it or he entertains the relevant wish, or perhaps he is daydreaming. Obviously, hopes and wishes are closely related to desires but they also are sufficiently different to warrant the distinction.

Understanding The (True) Desire to Live Happily as Humans

In Conclusion

Recall the wisdom and decency taught by the ancient philosophers: men cannot find happiness or serenity if they do not restrain their impulses and uphold the rule of law. But let’s also keep in mind Cartesian generosity, for how can you respect others if you don’t respect yourself? When this happens, one ceases to be wholly dependent on others and develops into a solid point capable of experiencing happiness, sharing happiness, and “procuring the general benefit of all men to the extent that it is within our reach.” We must not dwell on the fact that we are unhappy and that the situation is unfavorable with pessimism and resignation. To be happy, we must take action and work to create it.


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