Type of paper: Essay

Topic: Happiness, Wellness, Life, Poverty, Utilitarianism, People, Poor, Ethics

Pages: 4

Words: 1100

Published: 2020/12/15

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Happiness can be described differently by different people. Happiness is the experience of joy, positive well-being or contentment combined with a sense that one’s life is good, worthwhile and meaningful (Lyubomirsky 2008). Happiness resonates with the positive emotions that a person experiences together with the feeling of being satisfied and having a purpose in life. All these factors should complement one another in order for one to achieve true happiness. Being happy also is described as being in a positive emotional or mental state of well-being characterized by satisfying emotions of being contented and having joy. Happiness is believed to improve other aspects of life such as health, financial prosperity, good relationships and being more generous. Psychologists define happiness as subjective well-being as a combination of life satisfaction and having more positive emotions that negative emotions. For one to attain happiness in life, they should have pleasure that represents the ‘feeling good’ part of being happy. Another aspect of happiness is engagement that refers to having a good life that incorporates family, work, friend, and hobbies. Having meaning in life means to utilize or to use our strengths to add to a larger purpose. All these factors are important but having a meaning and engagement in life makes the most difference to leading a happy life (Lyubomirsky 2008).
Momentary happiness is also different from long term happiness. Positive emotions can trigger a moment of happiness albeit in a very short period that is contrary to having or enjoying happiness in the long haul. Since happiness is subjective, it can be measured and studied scientifically. People can honestly and reliably self-report their state of happiness and also when their happiness decreases or increases. Although there is a conception that having wealth and being rich leads to automatic happiness, this notion is not necessarily true. Studies have shown that being rich doesn’t guarantee automatic happiness. While being poor may make it hard to be poor, money doesn’t appear to buy happiness. Many people think that if they get more money they will be happier but this has not always been the case. The more money one gets, the more expectations they have and eventually they may become constrained and therefore meaning that they will become less happy.
Some people may argue that if you give the poor money then they may be happy. It will mean taking money from the rich to give to the poor so that you can achieve this assumption. Many poor people attribute their state to low earnings that make it hard for them to invest and high taxes that reduces their incentive to work and to invest hence leading to low productivity (Sandel 2010). Taking money from the rich and giving it to the poor will be deemed unfair and tyrannical. The libertarians strongly object to this form of assumption because they object the concept of redistribution. Libertarians tend to favor autonomous markets because they believe in human freedom. Therefore, by so doing, you will be depriving them of their happiness because they have liberty to do anything they desire with their money and resources. Taxing the rich heaving in order to distribute money to the poor will only make them not work so hard, and this will lead to them having low productivity (Sandel 2010).
Utilitarianism is described as having pleasures in life, being in a state of economic well-being and being free of suffering. It holds that our moral actions are the ones that make best use of utility. Mill says that to be truly happy, we should turn our attention away from our own happiness towards other ends and objects such as doing well for others and such high pleasures in life such as music and art (Mill 1863). He goes ahead to explain that positive actions are right in proportion as they tend to promote happiness whereby wrong actions tend to produce the reverse of happiness. The agent’s greatness doesn’t matter but the greatest amount of happiness altogether. Mill, therefore, argues that utilitarianism can only accomplish its goal of superior happiness by promoting the magnanimity of individuals so that all people can benefit from the honor of others. It is a standard of morality that uses happiness of the bigger number of people as its eventual goal. For one to attain or achieve pure happiness and self-pleasure for the society they have to achieve personal happiness first.
On the other hand, Aristotle maintains that humans seek good life and pleasure that is typically happiness. He also argues that virtue is standard as the quality of natural human function. But according to Aristotle virtues are a means to the total end of happiness, and they are chosen for the sake of happiness. It helps us to distinguish what is the best good because it shows what underwrites the greatest good or happiness to the greatest many. Aristotle also says that every human being requires happiness because all that they want is meant to bring that contentment and satisfaction. Happiness is tangible not theoretical. It remains abstract for Aristotle because in order to achieve this feeling of greatness one has to attain happiness for oneself as well as for the society upon which they thrive. However, Mill differs with Aristotle’s theory that claims that all systems are based on the principle of utility. He claims that his principle of utility is the right principle of morality for humans to have the ultimate happiness (Mill 1863).
In today’s world, there is a common notion that the governments greatly impact contentment and happiness of people. The ability of the government to provide opportunities for its citizens is significant to helping them lead a productive and satisfied life; therefore, this will ensure personal pleasure for the people. However, an entirely equal society cannot be achieved. Heavily taxing the rich in order to help the poor constitutes coercion and it violates and goes against their right of doing whatever they want with what they own. Majority of the world’s wealth is held by a small percent of individuals that means that there is a big gap between poor and the rich. The legitimacy of the wealth is however always a subject that is not justified but helping others should be a personal choice free from forceful action or coercion (Sandel 2010). Many people believe that economic inequality is unfair, but the decisions that people make in the free markets are hard to be overturned. Libertarians argue that taxation is fair based on the work that somebody undertakes and therefore they should be imposed and levied on equal measure to everyone. They also claim that the rich and affluent should be allowed to support the poor through their free will instead of being forced to do so. Therefore, forcefully taking money from the rich also constitutes injustice and is equally unfair.
When one is free to contribute to the general wellness and good of the whole society through his accord, then in leads to inner happiness and greatness. The freedom to help the poor and be mindful of the welfare of the community and those who are not economically stable is what leads to happiness Sandel 2010). People who realize this concept often enjoy greatness by seeing others happy; this in turn leads to such individuals experiencing total happiness too. The philosophy of morality is real and leading a moral life is the utmost objective to which humankind can seek. Although justice can’t be used to make the most of collective welfare, it is very challenging to measure happiness precisely because not everything that provides pleasure is worth pursuing. Virtue should be the guiding principal in the society when pursuing happiness where we can experience a society where the rich freely share their bounty with the poor and engage in a civil debate and dialogue about happiness and the real life. The maximum right to the biggest number of people, having individual freedom and encouraging shared benefits and the enhancement of progressive and enlightened societies is the ultimate happiness.

Works Cited

Mill, John. Utilitarianism. London: Parker, Son and Bourn, 1863. Print.
The source talks about the theory of normative ethics and moral actions that bring about pleasure and happiness to man as described by Mill. The book explores ways in which we can achieve happiness and well-being through observing certain actions. The source is appropriate for exploring means and ways that happiness is achieved by claiming that pleasure is superior to quality. The book is also appropriate in understanding the subject of utilitarianism better because Mill also compares his theory to those of other philosophers in explaining his arguments about morality and utility. The source explains that moral pleasures should be considered to be more satisfying than physical pleasures which don’t necessarily led to happiness.
Sandel, Michael. Justice: What’s the Right Thing to Do? New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2010. Print.
The book provides insight to the subject of justice as well as addressing arguments from other theorists which makes a good comparison to other discussions of various subjects. The book provides detailed arguments that I found so helpful while carrying out this task. The source also explores our responsibilities to others when living in a free society. It also explains if the government should heavily tax the rich while helping the poor as well as the fairness and validity of free market. The source tackles more questions on morality and what constitutes good morals and what is considered right or wrong.
Lyubomirsky, Sonja. The How of Happiness. London: Penguin Books, 2008. Print.
I decided to use this book because she provides detailed strategies on how to seek happiness and how to stay happy. She has a wide range of knowledge and experience in positive psychology which is displayed in this book. Every assertion this book makes is backed by scientific proof. The source is appropriate because it recommends a set of techniques that have the backing of studies that have been substantiated to increase happiness. The book also states that all the techniques doesn’t apply to everyone and everyone should settle for a technique that suits them most in the quest for happiness. The book is based on a scientific approach on how to pursue happiness and how to attain it.

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WePapers. (2020, December, 15) Good Essay About Happiness. Retrieved January 21, 2022, from https://www.wepapers.com/samples/good-essay-about-happiness/
"Good Essay About Happiness." WePapers, 15 Dec. 2020, https://www.wepapers.com/samples/good-essay-about-happiness/. Accessed 21 January 2022.
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"Good Essay About Happiness." WePapers, Dec 15, 2020. Accessed January 21, 2022. https://www.wepapers.com/samples/good-essay-about-happiness/
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"Good Essay About Happiness," Free Essay Examples - WePapers.com, 15-Dec-2020. [Online]. Available: https://www.wepapers.com/samples/good-essay-about-happiness/. [Accessed: 21-Jan-2022].
Good Essay About Happiness. Free Essay Examples - WePapers.com. https://www.wepapers.com/samples/good-essay-about-happiness/. Published Dec 15, 2020. Accessed January 21, 2022.
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