Striving for Authentic Happiness Essays

1396 Words 6 Pages
Globalization and the development of technology have provided people with more opportunities to do whatever they want. Because of the choices, people seem to be happier to make their own choices. However, Martin E.P. Seligman, the author of Authentic Happiness, would argue that they are not happy because that kind of happiness does not last long. In his book, Seligman explains that there are two kinds of happiness, pleasure and gratification. He says, “[t]he pleasures are delights that have clear sensory and strong emotional components, what philosophers call “raw feels”: ecstasy, thrills, orgasm, delight, mirth, exuberance, and comfort. They are evanescent, and they involve little, if any, thinking” (102). As he shows, pleasure is …show more content…
According to him, gratification is a key for people to have a good life. However, Seligman explains, “[g]ratification dispels self-absorption, and the more one has the flow that gratification produces, the less depressed one is” (119). Although it is clear that people need gratification more than pleasures, he points out that “[t]o start the process of eschewing easy pleasures and engaging in more gratifications is hard” (119). This difficulty of attaining gratification might make people to choose pleasure rather than gratification. Thus, according to Seligman’s definitions of happiness, it is easier for humans to seek pleasure rather than to seek gratification. In “The Psychology of Globalization”, Jeffery Jensen Arnett illustrates that young people focus on self longer by extending adulthood. Arnett notes, in global culture, people value on “individualism, free market economics, and democracy and include freedom of choice, individual rights, openness to change, and tolerance of differences” (779). Arnett argues that globalization, especially increasing the number of choices and allowing people to have freedom of choices affect each individual’s psychological functioning. He points out, “[w]hen people are allowed to make their own choices about values, love, and work, the likelihood may be enhanced that they will find a

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