Can there be happiness without sadness? Pleasure without pain? Peace without war?

We’re all looking for the good in the world. That’s the ultimate goal. We want the sweet desserts. We want the happy times with family. We want the pleasure from a significant other. We want the peace of living in a safe and comfortable home. Nobody looks forward to the lows.

But somehow, we find that we inevitably experience these lows. When we try to avoid them, we still find ourselves dealing with them. We end up having to eat kale and broccoli in our meals. We get in huge family disputes and don’t spend time with relatives. And we get nervous dealing with break ins, accidents, and other crime in our neighborhoods.

But the real question is can there be happiness without sadness? Can we have pleasure without having pain? And can there be peace without there being war? Here’s my thoughts and how I view it.

There can be happiness, pleasure, and peace without their opposite counterpart. Happiness I believe is a mindset. It is something we create by using our mind to focus on the positives of life rather than the negatives. It’s my decision to be sad about the loss of my pet. But I can always choose to be happy that he was taking out of his misery and can finally rest. So I could just be happy without having the sad.

I think this is simply because I’m in control of my happiness. Granted, there are things and events happening everyday that are horrible in general. But it will be my overall decision to be happy or sad. That means the sadness is not necessary or required in any way. I’m in control and therefore can choose happiness all the time.

This control applies to a lot of things. Think about how much say we have in creating pleasure or pain for ourselves. We can go out do pleasurable things almost everyday. Some people do focus on just getting and giving pleasure to others. And there might be pain, but most times it’s some choice we made that results in it.

We have a big hand in our peace versus going to war over things as well. I’m not saying we have one hundred percent control. Someone can just choose to go to war or bully you. But the amount of say and options we have to seek peace over war is surely understated. If we let go our attachment, our ego, and our hate for others we can avoid lots of conflict and just seek peace.

There can just be peace, pleasure, happiness, and more. The positives are more rewarding to us, and we can just aim to deal with those. But honestly, they would lose most their value without these opposing feelings to combat them. We value peace so much because we see the effects of all out war. We love getting pleasured because of how much pain we’ve experienced. And we strive to be happy because of how we know it hurts to be sad.

Imagine if everyone was happy one hundred percent of the time. Then it wouldn’t be happy anymore. It would be normal and feel like a neutral feeling. We can’t say pleasure feels good or bad if pleasure is all we ever experience. What’s the big deal about keeping the peace when we’ve never experienced the tragedy of a world war.

Math is such an important part of life. We’re surrounded by math, numbers, and patterns everyday of our lives. But it’s made many of us think everything in life is absolute. When in reality, much of our understanding and value comes from relative meaning. Yin and yang is one of the most powerful relationship dynamics in the world. Almost everything we think and feel gets value from relation to something else.

So while we can have just yin, just the positives, a life fully experienced is made up of both, yin and yang.

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