One has just been sent out as a biblical dove, has found nothing green, and slips back
into the darkness of the ark -- Kafka

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Is Happiness Impossible for One?

I've always thought Nathaniel Hawthorne had it pegged: "Happiness is a butterfly, which when pursued, is always just beyond your grasp, but which, if you will sit down quietly, may alight upon you."

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Anyway, still plowing through Barnes' Levels of Life. OK, but not as good as the last one I read, i.e. The Sense of an Ending.

Agreed: Subjectivity is Truth. But I can't agree with Barnes' (or Barnes' narrator) on the essence of happiness. Here's his griefstruck narrator's take:

You ask yourself: what happiness is there in just the memory of happiness? And how in any case might that work, given that happiness has only ever consisted of something shared? Solitary happiness -- it sounds like a contradiction in terms, an implausible contraption that will never get off the ground.

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