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Raison d’être

May 15, 2010

To borrow from Freud, are we here because we want to live? Or are we here because we are afraid of dying? It’s always going to be a mixture of the two, but which one dominates?

Recall the famous words of Socrates:

The unexamined life is not worth living.

To build off that, I think it important that we understand why we do the things we do, so that we can extract maximum benefit from our brief lives.

What matters to us: wealth, influence, romance, charity? They all do, but only so far as they contribute to our happiness. (Here, I define happiness loosely, to contain states like contentment, and being able to live with yourself. We’ll be more strict with this in the next post.)

Case in point:  Money doesn’t buy happiness; no, money buys goods and services. The consumption of goods and services, be it by yourself, by others, or together with others, affects us in different ways. It may directly lead to happiness, or to situations with potential for creating happiness, or not affect your happiness quotient in any way.

Unless we fully understand what makes us happy, we cannot be consistently happy. And despite how happiness is ultimately a personal matter, I believe it possible for all of us to be consistently happy. To be honest, I’m currently clueless as to how this could/should be done, but I plan on finding out.

I hope you’ll stick around to see it with me.

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3 Comments leave one →
  1. May 15, 2010 11:05 pm

    ‘We don’t read and write poetry because it’s cute. We read and write poetry because we are members of the human race. And the human race is filled with passion. And medicine, law, business, engineering, these are all noble pursuits and necessary to sustain life. But poetry, beauty, romance, love, these are what we stay alive for.’

    Are all things commodities?

    Oh, and reading what you write also gives me happiness, so welcome back to blogging.

  2. Grace permalink
    June 1, 2010 12:32 am

    Wow, this green is err… extremely happy, as far as your blog designs go.

  3. prashant permalink
    June 19, 2010 10:26 am

    nice piece calvin mate… 🙂

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