[Wittrs] Fwd: Note on a recent reading ('On Wittgenstein' by Hintikka)
kirby.urner at gmail.com
Mon May 7 01:54:41 CDT 2012
Apologies -- I didn't realize at first this was sent to me for forwarding.
I mistakenly thought I was reading something already forwarded.
---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Übersichtlichkeit <ubersicht at gmail.com>
Date: Sun, May 6, 2012 at 8:12 AM
Subject: Re: [Wittrs] Note on a recent reading ('On Wittgenstein' by Hintikka)
To: kirby.urner at gmail.com
Please forward to Wittrs, if you will...
I want to suggest that Wittgenstein would have had a far more subtle
view of happiness than the course, banal, self-satisfied enjoyment or
contentment that passes for "happiness" in much popular discourse.
Recall Wittgenstein's deathbed remark that he had lived a wonderful
life. Recall as well, "I don't know why we are here, but I'm pretty
sure that it is not in order to enjoy ourselves."
Living life with a sense of wonder and gratitude, with appreciation,
even in the face of suffering and adversity, would - or so I take it -
have far more to do with Wittgenstein's idea of happiness than the
philistine view of simply having things go one's way. And one can
surely see how keeping a sense of wonder and gratitude about the world
would connect with morality, with happiness, and with the idea of
inhabiting what is, in a real sense, a different world from one who is
This is a far cry from those who would try to make the wealthy and
successful into moral paragons as well, smug in their "happiness". A
far cry too from those who would enlist the "prosperity doctrine" to
link success to Christian virtue.
At the same time, it is silent on the matter of social justice. While
Wittgenstein was of course concerned to feed the hungry and heal the
sick, he was not one to see happiness in such terms. True happiness
is a deeper, more profound issue than contentment or enjoyment.
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