It is difficult to define the word happiness. Each of us may have our own definition according to our interpretation of the word. Similarly, great philosophers have interpreted the word differently. Then, they have inspired other people including Prem Rawat, who is an ambassador of peace. Let us take a close look at what those important persons think about happiness.
Happiness from the points of view of some philosophers
According to Aristotle
This great philosopher has managed to inspire a great deal of people due to a rather different view of the world as a whole. This ancient Greek philosopher also gave his opinion about the concept of happiness. According to him, the welfare of humans is through the soul activity which is in compliance with virtue.
He affirms that happiness is the absolute good. All actions that we carry out tend to go toward it, and it revolves around what we are doing and what our virtue is. He also stated clearly that in order to be happy, a human needs to be in good health and have external property.
According to Confucius
This best-loved Chinese philosopher also shares his point of view about what happiness is. But what makes him different from the others is that he talks about how to attain happiness, instead of giving a definition of the word.
For him, happiness is not objective. It is possible to rank it if we do not think about anything other than that. He clearly affirmed that finding happiness depends on how we look for it. This means that we must not necessarily look for happiness, we may just come across it on our way.
According to Emmanuel Kant
This German philosopher from the eighteenth century stated that « Happiness is what our imagination, rather than our reason, considers as an ideal ». According to his statement, in order to be happy, it is necessary to satisfy your needs and desires. Anyone who reasons too often will never be able to find happiness.
In fact, he confirms that you should not limit your cravings. However, it is necessary that humans give a higher priority to their duties before their interests, therefore, it is difficult to measure it. Therefore, no humans may become happy if they follow their reasoning.
According to Lao Tseu
Lao Tseu is a Chinese wiseman who is considered as a model by many people because of his way of thinking. According to him, happiness is synonymous with inner peace. If you feel it, it proves that you live in the present. If you feel depressed or anxious, according to this great philosopher, it means that either you predict too much the future, or that you live in the past.
If we think carefully about it, it is quite logical, because if an individual is at peace with himself, as Prem Rawat said to his disciples, he will absolutely be happy.
According to Epicure
According to this Greek philosopher, « pleasure is the beginning and the end of a happy life ». According to him, there are two kinds of happiness: the first one brings about inner peace, and the other one leads to pain and suffering. To be happy, man should be able to know the difference between those two kinds of pleasure.
Besides, the border between those is so minimal that it is recommended that we know well how to balance them so that we can really feel absolute happiness.