Money and the Pursuit of Happiness

Money and the Pursuit of Happiness

Thomas Jefferson spoke of the inalienable right to the Pursuit of Happiness, but he used the term pursuit in a different way than it is commonly used.  Many have interpreted this literally that happiness is something to pursue, chase or hunt down.  Approached this way, it remains elusive.  Particularly so when this is combined with the belief that money, more money, stuff and more stuff will make us happy, even more will make us happier and insure that we remain happy.  Most folks who’ve tried this will attest that it didn’t yield this outcome for them.  Those who used credit cards or other forms of credit to finance their experiment will attest that the resultant stress from the debt accrued in the process made them even less happy than where they began.

In 1776, the word pursuit referred to practicing something regularly, to make a habit of it. Pursuit, in this context, actually works for happiness.  Happiness practiced becomes less elusive, more normal and regular.

I’m playing a game with 50 other people.  We’re reading the book Happy For No Reason, doing the exercises in the book, and discussing the ideas in the book and whatever arises for us in the process.  We’re taking 50 days to play this game.  The game allows everyone to win.  Winners will be Happy For No Reason- meaning they’re happy regardless of circumstances.  They’re intrinsically happy and know that their happiness isn’t tied to what happens or doesn’t happen, having or not having anything in particular.  The book has far exceeded my expectations and I’m enjoying the interaction with the group.  I’ll keep you posted.

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