Thoughts about Happiness

By Marty Carraghan

“The fool who fools himself that he’s happy is better off than the smart man fooling himself that happy doesn’t mean a thing.” – Walter Mosley.

I read this quote and I liked it a lot, but I really don’t know what to make of it. In some ways I think it has matters nailed to rights. I believe that often we fool ourselves about the superiority of our intellectual lives as compared to other types of life we could be leading. Perhaps we would be better off just leading a simple life and not occupying ourselves with more ‘weighty’ concerns. At the same time, I know I’m too strongly committed to this type of life to ever do otherwise, and the strength of my commitment says to me that there must be something of genuine value here. Maybe the fool is truly better off, but the smart man cannot alter whether he’s smart or not and so has no choice but to play the hand he’s been dealt.

If we’re born with certain qualities, and these qualities largely define the sort of life we’re capable of, they also largely define how well off we can be. So then it seems that even happiness is mostly a matter of luck. I really don’t know what to think about these things. What do other people think?

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2 responses to “Thoughts about Happiness

  1. To say that happiness is a matter of luck is oversimplifying things a bit. There are some who are not fools but are poor. They can still be happy. The happiest people I know are not happy because of what they have. In fact, having more tends to make people protective and in the end wanting more. The happiest people I know are happy because they value the people in their lives, and they place their trust in God. How can anyone be happy without faith? How can anyone be happy without knowing they are loved? Joy resides in the heart, not in the go.

  2. Pardon me, please! That last word should be “ego” not “go.”

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