by Julian C Haines
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Pub Date 28 Nov 2022 | Archive Date 21 Dec 2022
Happiness has been used as guide to the good life for thousands of years. It can, however, just as easily lead us awry as direct us towards a life well lived.
We must learn to see happiness as something more nuanced and differentiated. By doing so the target we set up can bring us much more life satisfaction. This is not to deny the importance of happiness, we just need to see our aim more clearly.
Many attempts to deal with the vast amount of psychological pain that exists in the world today have been to look at what causes distress. A new field of positive psychology has emerged which then tries to look at the issue from the other end of the telescope and look at what makes people happy.
This book is an attempt to understand happiness philosophically: what it is, how we are responsible for it and what we can do to get more of it. Happiness is our alarm to detect good. These alarms, though, are often set to detect what is bad, so we don’t even see what is good. We also often see good as something we need to possess and control to extract that feeling of happiness. We then expunge any feeling of good. By changing how we view good, we can change our experience of happiness to something more controllable and enduring.