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Letter from Lhasa, number 372. The Pursuit of Unhappiness

Letter from Lhasa, number 372.The Pursuit of Unhappiness

by Roberto Abraham Scaruffi

Watzlawick, P.,The Situation Is Hopeless, But Not Serious. The Pursuit of Unhappiness, New York, NY, USA, 1983.

(Watzlawick 1983).

Paul Watzlawick

People are basically unable to be happy. So their efforts are focused on building their unhappiness. They need to be unhappy and to be surrounded from unhappy people. So they pursue not only their own unhappiness but also the unhappiness of the people they can in some way reach.

We may observe and imagine what can and may be doing the people of government and in office! Bigger is government, bigger is the pursuit of other people’s unhappiness. Also Watzlawick cannot repress himself from noticing that the growing ‘welfare’ State simply increases people problems and unhappiness.       

The more one does not accept the world how it is and has strong convictions how it should be, the more one purses one’s own and other people’s unhappiness. That is undisputable although many people have strong convictions about how the world would be. However, the more people purse specific visions of perfect worlds, the more they try creating unhappiness. Of course, this unhappiness’ creation is variously justified.   

Many people convince themselves to be persecuted even only from destiny. I’d like to underline that perhaps even more people refuse to admit to be persecuted even when that really happens. One believes destiny be conspiring against oneself. One does not believe there really be individuals and eventually government conspiring against oneself. Basically, people refuse to see reality, what really happens under one’s own nose.   

Watzlawick underlines and unmasks various and currently used techniques one employs for denying reality, for complicating it, or using it for one’s own suffering and for making suffering other people, for persecuting other people and for inducing other people to assimilate themselves paranoid, self-persecutory and persecutory visions of reality, conditioned reflexes, customs and patterns.

For Watzlawick this infernal, or negative, cycle is breakable by loyalty, trust and tolerance. Assuming that everything be good, now Watzlawick is using Dostoevsky, would be possible to conclude that we are unhappy because we do not know we are happy. Those understanding that are immediately happy.  

These conclusions are certainly simplistic although they may contain elements of truth. What is surely essential is the suggestion of removing the unhappiness we self-create.

Watzlawick, P.,The Situation Is Hopeless, But Not Serious. The Pursuit of Unhappiness, New York, NY, USA, 1983. 

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Atualizado em: Ter 28 Jul 2015

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