Sunday, January 11, 2009

Have 'No Right to Happiness'

This article is about having no right to happiness. Lewis begins the article with a story of a man who leaves his wife for another woman. Clare exclaims that this is okay for him to do because he has right to happiness.  Lewis goes on to say that we do not have a right to happiness the same way we don't have a right to be 6 foot tall or the right to born to a millionaire. He then gives a standard for what Clare meant by the right of happiness; we have the right to happiness as long as it falls within the State Law and Natural Law. But what did the writers of the declaration mean when they wrote the "the right to pursue happiness"? They certainly didn't mean by ANY means to pursue happiness, like rape or murder. "No society could be built on such a basis." They meant to pursue happiness by lawful means. 

I really enjoyed this article a lot. I love paragraph about how foolish love can be. Being young and foolish I got wrapped up in the vicious cycle of 'strong erotic passion'. I really did think that I had found lifelong happiness in another being. All truly was at stake. If I missed my chanced I really thought  I would've lived life in vain. And when everything fell apart I sunk into the 'fathomless depths of self-pity'.  But like Adriana said on the second day class about when a man says you are worthless, you can either curl up or you can expand. I chose to expand, and stand tall. And I am such a better person for it. 

(I chose to expand)

I love love love this quote: "When two people achieve lasting happiness, this is not solely because they are great lovers but because they are also - I must put it crudely - good people; controlled, loyal, fair-minded, mutually adaptable people." I like it because it's so true. The people that are the happiest are the one that are good people and controlled. I also really like the part about how women look at men's personalities whereas men look at women's beauty which will fade after a couple of years. 

Lewis closes the article writing about how once we start acting on every impulse (not only sexual, but every impulse that will make us happy) is when "our civilization will have died at heart."

P.S. What is Carte Blanche?

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