The concept of happiness is one that causes controversies, some says it doesn’t exist and others revere it. In this particular case one can read the facts of this phenomenon on the article A History of Happiness. In this article is recounted how the view of happiness has changed with time. Furthermore, it is compared one against the other. It is mentioned how linguistics shows the happiness as the human kind seeks being well and how this relates to our concept of it.
“Every Indo-European language without exception going way back to ancient Greek, the word for happiness is associated with the word luck”. It is quite credible this assumption as the author gives examples. This leads one to appreciate the way the ancient viewed happiness. For them it was given not obtained, it “was what happened to us”. Also it was believed blindly that it was utterly out of human hands. Therefore, the Classical philosophy main aim was concentrated on happiness and some of the most known ancient philosophers focused on it. Although, their view was that happiness could be earned. Moreover, it was thought that it was “an outcome of moral comportment” rather than an emotional state. So only a few would be able to achieve it.
As an antithesis of the ancient view, the modern type of happiness was transformed as right. Thomas Jefferson declares it to be a “self-evident truth” while George Mason speaks of the chase and obtain of happiness as a “natural endowment”. In this manner, gives a democratic view of the concept. Which lead to an open abhorrent of any kind of oligarchy towards what it should be had by mankind. Then we have John Locke, an English philosopher, who said that human “shouldn’t assume that suffering is our natural lot”. Also, that one should maximize one’s pleasure on Earth. Hence we acquire the belief of feeling good above being good.
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