Thursday, March 10, 2016

Gross National Happiness

     This afternoon I read an article in my retiree magazine. A trip to the Kingdom of Bhutan was described.

     The Bhutanese government is based on the understanding "that each individual's well being must take precedence over the economic and political practice of materialism." Gross National Happiness, which measures the country's prosperity not by monetary value, but by the
 physical, spiritual social and environmental well being of the population.

     Each person is part of a larger whole. All people are dependent on the other.

    The article went on to say that the Bhutanese realize a certain amount of financial security is needed. They reject greed and accumulation of wealth.

    The Bhutanese have four underlying principles of Gross National Happiness: generosity, ethics, tolerance and perseverance.

     Generosity is considered very highly. We know that generosity gives one a great feeling of pride and satisfaction.

     Ethics means how we behave towards each other. Ethics means that we behave decently toward others. Just think how we would have to treat those who are different than we are.

   Tolerance is difficult for us as we have our own personal bias's .We are all equal concerning our fundamental humanity. After that, all bets are off for many of us. We find differences in each other as far as religion, language, gender, wealth and many other aspects of ordinary everyday life. We keep pushing these differences for selfish reasons.

    Perseverance means facing life's challenges and continuing in spite of challenging circumstances.

    Since we've just had an election where division was promoted so that one party could win, I thought this was an appropriate idea to consider. One party wanted only Christian refugees brought to this country. One party did all it could to stall funding to indigenous projects and education.

   I prefer politicians who promote unity. I think generosity, ethics, tolerance and perseverance would go a long way to bringing happiness to our population.