Posted by: aboutalbion | July 4, 2012

Religion and happiness

In one of my recent posts, I noted that the religious practice of meditation (aka mindfulness) is being promoted in the UK by people and groups linked with Buddhism and Hinduism.

What I also find interesting is that this practice is being advertised in a western consumerist way.  What I see is that meditation is being promoted as the answer to the question, “How to be happy …?”.  I consider advertising a religious practice like this is misrepresentation.

One man who tells it like it is seems to me to be Arthur Schopenhauer.  I am grateful to Alain de Botton for drawing my attention to Schopenhauer, and I haven’t read a lot of his work yet, but I consider that Schopenhauer orientated himself in a realistic way.  “Every life history is a history of suffering.” [(1988) Manuscript Remains Vol 3  1.76]

From this perspective, the purpose of religious practice is to provide some consolation for a troublesome human existence.  What is the point of desiring happiness that self-evidently almost all other human beings do not have?



  1. Thanks for sharing such a pleasant opinion,
    article is nice, thats why i have read it entirely

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