To Be Happy or Not

“I actually attack the concept of happiness. I don’t mind people being happy - but the idea that everything we do is part of the pursuit of happiness seems to me a really dangerous idea and has led to a contemporary disease in Western society, which is fear of sadness. It’s a really odd thing that we’re now seeing people saying 'write down 3 things that made you happy today before you go to sleep', and 'cheer up' and 'happiness is our birthright' and so on. We’re kind of teaching our kids that happiness is the default position - it’s rubbish. Wholeness is what we ought to be striving for and part of that is sadness, disappointment, frustration, failure; all of those things which make us who we are. Happiness and victory and fulfillment are nice little things that also happen to us, but they don’t teach us much. Everyone says we grow through pain and then as soon as they experience pain they say 'Quick! Move on! Cheer up!' I’d like just for a year to have a moratorium on the word 'happiness' and to replace it with the word 'wholeness'. Ask yourself 'is this contributing to my wholeness?' and if you’re having a bad day, it is.”

Hugh Mackay, psychologist and social researcher

It's been on my mind a lot lately.
Mostly due to the fact that this is day #5 of being sick in bed.
Something that most definitely does not contribute to making one happy.
But it is, I think, contributing a bunch to my wholeness.
I can almost feel myself growing in patience and in appreciation for my usual health.
Ryan and I both keep saying how great it's going to feel after we're not sick anymore. 
And I just know after I finally shake this thing my health and my happiness will feel sublime.
And that alone makes this an important experience.
Makes these five days worth remembering, even though they haven't exactly been happy ones.
Seems so refreshing doesn't it?
To take the pressure off of being happy every minute of every day.
As though the only way to appreciate life is to be happy in it.
What do you think?
Are we meant to always be happy?


  1. Oh my goodness. I seriously love this quote and this concept. You know how you come across something just at the right moment. As cheesy as it sounds, this was perfect for me to read today. I really like looking for wholeness rather than happiness only. But still, I hope you are feeling better now!!

    1. I know just what you mean. I'm glad you love it as much as I do, because I think happiness comes so much easier to some. It can make me feel guilty sometimes about not being 100% thrilled 100% of the time.


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