Hythloday's Definition Of Happiness essay example
In this essay, I will be writing about the citizens of Utopia, Bensalem, and Brave New World and explaining which of these citizens I believe are the happiest and why. In Utopia, Hythloday talks about living on the island of Utopia and how he was happy living there. He says he was happy living there because he liked the way the government was run there and how no one had to worry about money or private property. He believes in communal property because it reduces pride, greed, poverty, and the exploitation of the poor by the wealthy. Since Hythloday also believed that money was the root of all evil, that the unequal distribution of goods is unjust, and that money itself does not bring happiness, the island of Utopia was the perfect society for him. Besides the economic equality in Utopia, he also liked the learning, the studying time for the philosophic types (like himself), and the choice of what religion you wanted to be.
Hythloday's definition of happiness is the improvement of the mind. As for the other citizens on the island of Utopia, I don't think they were as happy as Hythloday was. They had to live on a set schedule that they had to follow every day. I would think it would get very boring after awhile doing the same thing day after day. Everything they did from the minute they woke up in the morning to the time they had to be sleeping at night was on a set schedule. They did have time set aside for free time, but even with that they didn't have much of an option of what they could do.
They couldn't spend that time in idle and certainly not sleeping. That free time was pretty much time where they had to do more work. On the island of Utopia, there was also inequality of women. Women were not treated as equal as men were in this society. When it came to work, women were seen as weak and had to do jobs in wool and flax.
Women also had less power than men and had to serve their husbands. When they all sit down to eat the women also do not sit next to their husbands. Before religious holidays, women had to go in front of their husbands and admit all their wrongdoings to them. In this society, women were inferior to men. I would think they were not too happy with this, but since they had no say in anything they had no choice but to deal with it. Some other things that I would think would not make the citizens happy were the traveling procedures, no smoking or choices of beverages, the family number maintenance, and the changing of jobs.
The changing of jobs was a big one because if you wanted to change your job, you also had to change your family. This meant that you had to leave your family and go to a new one. I think this is very strange and would make the person unhappy leaving behind their family. Even though most of the things that go on in Utopia could be strange and make someone unfamiliar with this kind of society unhappy, for the most part the citizens of Utopia seem pretty happy with their lifestyle. Their understanding of unhappiness could be persuasive, especially when Hythloday is talking about it.
It can be appealing to some because no one would have to deal with poverty, greed, or jealousy. Everyone would also help everyone out and there would be no fighting. In Bensalem, the society was very different from the one in Utopia. There political structure was different, as well as their traditions, customs, ceremonies, material goods, and "secret" aspects of their society. Salomon's House was a major order or society in this kingdom. This society was dedicated to the study of the works and creatures of God.
This society was established to find out the true nature of all things. Every twelve years, two ships were sent out to go to other countries to find out how they did things over in that country. These people had to bring back knowledge of the sciences, arts, manufactures, and inventions. They had to bring back books, instruments, and patterns that would help them become better than all other countries. There was also laws of "secrecy" against strangers. No one living outside of Bensalem knew anything that went on there.
They kept everything a secret from them. No one even knew that this kingdom of Bensalem even existed until sailors landed there and saw it for themselves. The citizens of Bensalem welcome any sailors or "strangers" unto their land and give them a place to stay, food, care for their sick and hurt, as well as anything else they desire. The people of Bensalem seem to be very happy with the way they are living.
They define happiness as being interested in religion, science, and family. They are happy with being Christians and believing in God and trying to find out how everything was created. They believe very strongly in family. They even have a Feast of the Family that celebrates a man that has 30 descendants. They also have many laws dealing with marriage and there is no polygamy allowed in Bensalem. Some of the things that go on in Bensalem are also strange, like in Utopia, but the citizens seem to be happy living in this society.
They basically have everything anyone can ask for in regards to science and material goods. They have accomplished everything they wanted to and now they feel they are ready to let the rest of the world know who they are and what they have done. I think their happiness is more persuasive than the Utopians because they have a lot more things than the Utopians had. They were also a lot more scientifically advanced than the Utopians were.
The society of Brave New World is totally different from the societies of Utopia and Bensalem. The motto of the Brave New World is Community, Identity and Stability. The Brave New World is a very scientifically and technologically advanced place. The Brave New World is more of a futuristic society where no one is born the natural way. Everyone is either hatched or born out of a test tube.
Everyone is also conditioned to belong to one of five castes: Alpha, Beta, Gamma, Delta, and Epsilon. Alphas are the ones that are destined to become the leaders and thinkers of the World State. Each of the rest of the castes, are conditioned to be slightly less physically and intellectually impressive. The Epsilons are the ones that perform all of the menial labor. The Brave New Worlder's definition and understanding of happiness is the desire for food, sex, drugs, nice clothes, and other consumer items. From when they are a young age they are taught about what they are allowed to like and do and what they aren't allowed to.
One of the ways they condition them are through hypnopaedia, a sleep teaching method. This is used to teach the children the morals of the World State. They are also conditioned by the World State to think that happiness is not "human" truths, such as love, friendship, and any other personal connections. The World State also controls all efforts by the citizens to gain any sort of scientific truth. When they are feeling down, they just take soma which clouds their judgments and replaces them with happy hallucinations.
Even though the citizens of Brave New World seem happy with their lifestyles, they are really not. They just don't know how to show that they are not happy. They don't really know how to do that, since they have been through all that conditioning and were taught everything they know how to do. If you think about it, how can anyone be happy living in this Brave New World? It's hard to be living in this kind of society where you are placed into a certain caste and taught everything you have to believe in.
They are also taught that what they are doing is happiness. For example, look at the Epsilons. When they are bred, they are stunted by oxygen deprivation and chemical treatments so they are happy to be performing menial labor. If they weren't stunted, I'm sure they wouldn't be that excited and happy performing the jobs they are given to do, like being an elevator operator. The Brave New Worlder's definition and understanding of happiness is less compelling than the Utopians' and the Bensalemites'. To me, happiness is definitely not the definition that the Brave New Worlder's believe in.
I think that the Utopians' and the Bensalemites' definition is more compelling than the Brave New Worlders'. It is less compelling because they are taught that happiness is the desire for food, sex, drugs, nice clothes, and other consumer items. They are also taught that unhappiness is "human" truths, such as love, friendship, and any other personal connections. I think it should be the other way around and happiness should be love, friendship, and other personal connections rather then materialistic things. I think the happiest citizens are the citizens from Utopia.
Even though I thought some of the things they considered happiness was a bit awkward, it didn't seem to bother the citizens at all. They seemed pretty happy with the way they lived. They lived in a society with no money and no private property and this is one of the things that made them happy. I also think this is not a bad thing. I think it made the society a better place to live in because there was no jealousy, poverty, or greed. Everyone in the society also helped one another in whatever they needed.
I think this is a good quality to have in a society. Not everyone has the same understanding and meaning of the word happiness. What happiness means to one person is not the same as what it means to another person. The citizens of Utopia, Bensalem, and the Brave New World all had their different understandings of happiness. They all had their meaning of happiness, but not all the citizens living in these societies were actually happy there. Some of the citizens, like in the Brave New World, either pretended to be happy or didn't really know the meaning of it because it was instilled in them when they were little.
Of all three of these places, I think the Utopians were the happiest citizens.