The “My Happiness” generation

 

This really is the uber individualist society. Last night I was at a christmas awards night for a large exercise and health group in Dublin, Ireland. There were the usual glam bods and also lots of Joes and Jans who were ‘getting healthy’ at their end of year celebration, on Guinness and Jameson. It started off very quiet and tame but as the night rolled on the polite chatter turned into a rumble and then an almighty roar. At 10:45 the awards began and of course I thought this will be great to see everyone celebrating their fellow ‘bootcampers’ for breaking through their personal limitations. These guys must have really gone for it to receive these accolades. But no way! The back half of the room had no intention of quietening down, not even when the front half gave them a huge orchestrated “sssssssshhhhhhh”. Not a dint was made in their personal raving and ranting…because this is the age of ‘me’. This morning I ranted myself to my mate about the party and asked where’s the team spirit gone? Where’s the desire to support and celebrate with your mates? And I joked with a Cheshire Cat kind of grin “ there’s no ‘ I ‘ in team”! And Gearoid responded with a shotgun quip, “but there is an ‘m’ and an ‘e'”. And I was stopped dead in my tracks feeling that this is exactly what was happening in this consumerist, hedonistic, me centered age where the chase for personal happiness sits above all else.   This flexing and posturing of “my personal joy” has become so consuming and self centered that they’ve lost the plot. In doing so they’ve lost the key… no, not the key but the whole bunch of keys….to finding this elusive panacea to their pain and the pain in our world. For pursuing their happiness is never going to bring them relief, just as their search for physical perfection is never going to bring them happiness while it remains all about their, personal uber happiness in this uber individualist society.

 

A Preface to The Fourth Quadrant by me

Do you want to be happy? Do you want the good vibes that emanate from that state? Do you, like most people, prefer the good feelings of happiness to the less comfortable feelings you experience when happiness leaves and closes the door behind her? She never stays for ever and you rarely know when she’s going to leave and when she’s going to return again. All happiness’s visits are definitely limited and yet we pursue her as a life mission more than any other mission in our lives. Sometimes she stays a few hours, sometimes a few days and sometimes even a few weeks but she does leave eventually leaving us disappointed and wanting more of this much loved and often taken for granted, friend.

Philosphers, sociologists, and scientists have written about this profoundly human desire as the most powerful and indeed all-possessing force that drives all of our lives. Plato, Socrates and later Aristotle were the first westerners to explore her pull, in great detail and with enormous perception. Some of today’s most influential thinkers still claim that the majority of our understanding of happiness was unfolded by these doyens of truth almost 2,500 years ago and that not until the last 100 years have we taken significant strides forward in our understanding of how it works for individuals and for our societies and how we can have more or less of it in our lives. But even with all the extraordinary scientific and economic strides forward that have happened in the last 50 years there has been no real measurable increase in the happiness of the developed world. After reading many piles of books and reports and experiencing this phenomena in my business and with my clients I clearly believe that until we conquer the re-writing of the DNA of all humans and totally change our politicians and economists perspective on the essential role of happiness in all of our lives, we will not see any major improvement in its presence in our lives. There is actually good evidence now to show that our genes are more responsible for our happiness than any thing else and experiments (with rats) have shown that we can effect a change, at a genetic level, in our happiness ….but this is many years away from being really useful in our lives. We also know now through the extraordinary work of psychologists, sociologists and scientists (especially in the last 40 years) that happiness is measurable and that many of our assumptions about happiness are wrong. Having babies do not make us more happy. Income increases above subsistence do not have much impact, if any, on increasing our happiness. And GDP (the economic measure that nearly all government use to measure the success of a country) is a very poor measure of the happiness and well-being of a nation.

But even if all this extraordinary work does lead to increased happiness across the world there will still be a search for more happiness by every single human on this planet because we are ‘coded’ to do that….searching for happiness. Many have called it the pursuit of Happiness. Its even written into the foundational codes of nations such as the USA’s Declaration of independence as a primary right of all people no matter their creed, race or financial status. And though it is fundamental to human actions the pursuit of happiness is the thing that is of such concern…a pursuit that will never lead to success! We will never arrive at happiness and say I am here, I have arrived at the destination and no longer need to pursue it. So why do we chase this ‘feeling’ as if it were the holy grail… as if it were the end result?

Happiness is a Red Herring! It is the eggs but not the cake. It is the training session but not the game. Its the tool kit but not the job done and completed.

I was Skype-ing with a friend recently in Düsseldorf, Germany. Frank had been very generous with his time in helping me keep on track with some research I was undertaking. And I felt so much like I wanted to support him with anything in return. So I said:

 

 

Me to Frank in Düsseldorf, Germany a Skype conversation

 

Maurice : and how can i help u today?

Frank D.: nice question

Frank D.: don´t know

Frank D.: i am feeling a little blue the last few days

Frank D.: maybe the weather

Frank D.: but i am raising my frequencies

Maurice : i have been researching happiness for the last few weeks

Maurice : the history for the last 2500 yrs

Maurice : and i think its a ‘red herring’

Maurice : we all think that ‘happiness’ is the holy grail but….

Maurice : in fact, since Plato, it has been recognised as the one thing that all humans search for their whole lives

Maurice : and that’s true…I agree!

Maurice : but….i think its a front or a mirage for the real thing that nature/god/consciousness has us doing.

Maurice : what i believe we are really doing is using the energy of the happiness misery pendulum to cause us to create…

Maurice : we create anything from a book (like me) to a relationship or a walk in the park….all creations

Maurice : its the only thing the universe does…..creates

Maurice : and it does it through destruction and creation….that is the same energy as misery and happiness or pain and pleasure. When you stop creating the universe will try happiness first but if you ignore its gift you will then get slapped around a bit and experience some unhappiness or even misery … if you really resist.

Frank D.: right

Maurice : it does what ever it needs to do to get you to create and therefore be part of the evolutionary process.

Maurice : evolution or evolving, is the only thing the universe is interested in!!!!

Frank D.: i totally agree

Maurice : and if u get in the way of evolving yourself u will find unhappiness or misery to kick u into gear. I’m being a little simplistic here and I should therefore add that the more heart connected (or ‘true’ to your authentic self) your creative focus is, the less pain and unhappiness will arise. This is where most people get unstuck! If you are creating to please or placate someone else or if its to “keep up with the Jones’s” then the evolutionary result will be out of sync with the universe! So don’t do that ! Only create from your heart or your truth. As I often say to people …”Stop fighting the Universe!”

Frank D.: ;)right

Maurice : so “raising your frequency” is really a code for u that means…”I will move my energy into creation mode”….”I will move my energy into the heart centred creation mode”

Maurice : into evolution and growth mode for myself and others…the whole world

Maurice : and so the FLOW continues and is then less disturbed and u feel great!

[11:13:15 PM] Frank D.: thnks

[11:13:23 PM] Maurice Goldberg: a pleasure

[11:14:19 PM] Frank D.: i like this kind of filosophy

 

And in a simple way I had communicated with him where my thoughts were that were causing me to write this book. It wasn’t the guts of the book but it gave me the motivation and the drive to share a concise way of looking at how we are all playing the game of life. Lets call it the Happiness Game, instead of how we might choose to play the game of life which I will call the Creators Game. One is a cyclical game full of hope, doubt and yearning. It is played in every waking hour of our lives .It causes us to take on roles, not the Jungian archetypes but a mix of three quite dynamic friends and adversaries. The thing they all have in common is they cant sustain happiness in our lives and they never take us where we really want to go and yet they are the roles we play in the game of life. The goal of this book is to help you understand how you may be playing the game of life so that you can make some different choices and not just feel happier about your life, but more importantly, gain a new sense of alive-nment that is experienced by moving in sync with the fundamental power/energy that drives the whole universe. It is a choice…. to search for happiness or to instead move with less friction and more purpose in sync with the whole of everything…in other words to stop fighting the universe.

 

 

 

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About mauricegoldberg

creator, change maker, agitator, in both the visual art and business worlds.
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2 Responses to The “My Happiness” generation

  1. Michelle Falzon says:

    Great to see you writing blog posts MG!

    Love it xx

  2. Sam Moon says:

    Wishing you a very magical year of the Monkey!

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