In our time mass or collective production has entered our economics, our politics, even our religion, so that some nations have substituted the idea collective for the idea God. This in my time is the danger. There is great tension in the world, tension toward a breaking point, and men are unhappy and confused. At such a time it seems natural and good to me to ask myself these questions. What do I believe in? What must I fight for and what must I fight against?
At first happiness might seem like just desserts for biological fitness (more accurately, the states that would have led to fitness in the environment in which we evolved). We are happier when we are healthy, well-fed, comfortable, safe, prosperous, knowledgeable, respected, non-celibate, and loved. Compared to their opposites, these objects of striving are conducive to reproduction. The function of happiness would be to mobilize the mind to seek the keys to Darwinian fitness. When we are unhappy, we work for the things that make us happy; when we are happy, we keep the status quo. The problem is, how much fitness is worth striving for?
We have an internal check and balance system. By design we are so filled with possibility, opportunity, with greatness that when we live small, within the bottom of our capability, we innately know we should be living greater than that, and it creates a disconnect inside that leads us to feeling empty, unhappy, maybe even depressed.
There are people who are never content, never appeased, forever dissatisfied; who continually look to what escapes them, convincing themselves that if only they could attain that one desire outside of reach, they would be happy. ? It seems almost pointless to give to these people because their eyes immediately shift from the gift to stare miserably at the portion held back. ? Their wants, demands, expectations, appetites are never satiated, thus, they refuse to be happy. ? And you cannot make them so.