What comes first to your mind when you read about enjoying “simple pleasures”? How many pleasures that you can think of are really “simple”? And are these simple pleasures supposed to make you happy?
The man likes to think of himself as a great and the most important being on the planet: we’ve tamed rivers, we use winds to make energy, we have conquered the sea and the sky; we build roads, bridges, buildings, and we communicate with friends on the other side of the world in a blink of an eye. Even with all this intelligence and power, we are often unhappy; we feel dissatisfied in the midst of a civilization that we have created around ourselves. The human being needs satisfaction in order to feel happy because only satisfaction will lead to happiness. However, we often completely misunderstand what a pleasure is.

We feel dissatisfied in the midst of a civilization that we have created around ourselves.

We share two basic mechanisms with all living beings on the planet: we avoid unpleasant situations and seek pleasure, i.e. satisfaction. Freud believed that these are the two basic principles of mental functioning. Even just avoiding unpleasant things is enough to feel pleasure. We feel satisfaction when we meet our basic needs, such as food and drink, and our emotional needs through the presence of dear people, for example.

Myths about happiness

Modern society has built a number of myths about happiness – about what it is and what it is not. The biggest misconception is that we must be rich in order to afford pleasures. If you agree to this way of thinking, then you will constantly be unhappy unless you become rich. We keep seeing people who are happy and satisfied on billboards and in commercials because the goal of such advertising is to say: “buy this product and you will become happy”.

continue to part 2