What is happiness?

   The question is not new; this comes from a long time ago and is crucial for each person. We could summarize it in this question: How do we harmonize be happy (a happy life) and do good (the good) and correct? The difficulty is that these words and expressions have lost, or better said, have been given other meanings. Happiness coincides with pleasure and what is useful. Frequently, our sight and intelligence are incapable to deepen because we are blinded by the individual, the sensitivity and the moment.

   Julián Marías expressed it in these words: «The fundamental question that we should ask ourselves and others is: do I care about the truth? This is the way to ask about the meaning of life: what do I need to be happy? What will I always need? What impede me happiness? It is doubtful that men ask themselves these questions and it is more doubtful that they are able to answer them, perhaps the greatest difficulty is based on they dare to ask them. If this were done, at least we get clarity on the meaning of life, or its lack of sense, because things are not good by necessity. If we do not discover the meaning of life, and if we are not in it, happiness disappears”.

   If we move from the individual to the panorama picture of society, such Tocqueville’s words could serve 150 years ago: «I see an innumerable crowd of like and equal men…Each of these isolated in their own world and find strange the fate of everyone else… They exist only in themselves and for themselves, and if they still have a family, at least it can be said that they have not country. Over these is elevated an immense, tutelary power, which takes sole charge of assuring their enjoyment and of watching over their fate. It is absolute, attentive to detail, regular, provident, and gentle. it does not tyrannize, it gets in the way: it curtails, it enervates, it extinguishes, it stupefies, and finally reduces each nation to being nothing more than a herd of timid and industrious animals, of which the government is the shepherd.

   Perhaps the examples of some lives provide us light on this pursuit of happiness, always limited here on earth.

   Mother Teresa of Calcutta

   “Once, a woman told me about a Hindu family with eight children who had not eaten for so long. I took some rice and I went there immediately. Those kids were at death’s door because of starvation. They received me with joy. Their mother took the rice, she divided the rice, she shared out one part to her children and she went out with the other part. When she came back I asked her: «Where did you go?» And she answered: «There is a Muslim family next to the door, they also have eight children and are angry like us.”

   • Teresa of Calcutta was born in 1910 in Skopje (Yugoslavia). In 1948 she founded the Order: Missionaries of Charity and in 1979 she was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.

   Montse

“Montse had the courage to look at the pain face to face»: you are the pain, she thought, but I’m going to win you. I can not get out of this bed … but from here, I will fight all I can! I am going to use you to win! This pain will help me to love: you are going to be my new way of loving», and she changed her illness in an instrument of co redemption.»
Cejas, J.M., Montse Grases.

   Karol Wojtyla

   «She tells that the priest was concerned about her movingly. He got hot tea, bread and cheese and, because she could not walk due to her leg was swollen, he carried her on his back for many hours until the arrival to a larger station. Here he light fire, gave her his black coat and promised to take her to Krakow where her aunt lived. At the beginning of the meeting, the young man had introduced, he was Karol Wojtyla
University of Piura, Peru, VII.

   Sabriye

   «At nine years Sabriye realize that reading is a great effort for her. She has to do it with a magnifying glass and on a big screen: «it caused me a headache and finally I did not enjoy it (…) I believed that I was clumsy.» At twelve she ends up accepting her condition and loses the fear of the word blind.
After she graduated in Philosophy and Sociology, she looked for develop her projects outside her country (Germany). She decided by the Tibet. She studied Tibetology and developed the first Tibetan Braille script (…).
Today, children who go to school of Sabriye, instead of feeling inferior, have the enough assurance to respond: «Yes, I am blind. Do you know to read and write? And if so, can you do it in the dark?»

   • Sabriye Tenberken lost her sight at twelve years because of a strange disease. She learned Braille, studied, overcame the difficulties and traveled to the region of Tibet where she taught to the blind children. Because of her work, she received the Norgall prize of the International Woman’s Club and the Charity Award. Her book: My path leads to Tibet, ed. Maeva, has become a best-seller in several countries.

   Jorge

   «As we approached to the school, the bus was filling with unmistakable people. Among them there were four faces of children, I think the oldest was about twelve years old and the youngest about five. Their physical resemblance and behavior lead me to the conclusion that they were brothers. In the scene, one of them looks for his bus pass in his pockets time and time again. He does not find it and says to the oldest: surely I have forgotten it at home, I need to give me your pass, and tomorrow I will use twice my bus pass. Do you accept? The oldest says: OK

   • Jorge is the oldest of four children and has grown in the warmth of a family, he is in high school. He does not change by anything his two regular environments: his home and his time with his friends. He knows that in both places people expect of him sincerity, optimism, understanding, help,(…) strength in order to make other people happy. (Jorge «One day every day»), JARA.

   José Arnal

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