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How Individuals Pursue Or Compromise Their Happiness Philosophy Essay

Paper Type: Free Essay Subject: Philosophy
Wordcount: 981 words Published: 1st Jan 2015

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With the development of the modern society, some problems might show up which could not be borne by some people, Allie Fox could be one of them and the way he express his grievance is not to complain but to move away from America and try to find the paradise of his. He brings his family with him and move to the Mosquito Coast in Honduras with the wish that he could build up a new country, a civilization of his there (Amis & Gilder, 1982, p84). One thing of Allie Fox, the father, does could conclude and guide reader to foresee the end of the story. Allie had invented a machine which could make ice from fire and his civilization is going to build up base on the ice—- it could be called the ice civilization. This fact might hint that this civilization would crush as the ice would melt. Paul Theroux’s The Mosquito Coast could be regarded as an adventure novel at first, but when it has been studied, it could be found that it is a menology from every people in the modern society. Though not every people would kill others or move to the jungle, they might try to pursue their happiness as an individual.

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The text creator gaves the world a hero who hunts his happiness as an individual and tries to cut the connection between him and the modern world. In the Mosquito Coast, Allie Fox tries to build up his country in the jungle where he believes that would have no troublesome things modern society would have—- he leaves America just because he could not bear the things he hates to destroy the country he loves (Denby, 1986, p129). Allie is more like a dream hunter than an investor. He tries to find the happiness in the jungle and try to find the individual dream without the help of others.

Text creator, Paul Theroux, gives Allie the dream and the way to pursue the individual happiness. However, the problem is that Allie does not have a clear idea of what individual happiness is and how to pursue it. In the novel, Allie believes that when he leaves the things he always hates behind, he could pursue his happiness, And his happiness should be pure and simple. As it is said that there is no 100 percent freedom in the world, and there should not be 100 percent pure happiness in the world. Therefore, to pursue the individual happiness, one should know what individual happiness is.

There are many factors can affect, or even destory individual’s happiness. In our daily live the most common factor can be found are family, law, and society. As a example, one’s right for hunting true love might be limited if he or she is trying to marry the member in his or her family (Bell & Ham, 2003, p337). Due to the fact that Individual’s happiness would be affected by so many elements. It is impossible to hunt the pure happiness, if the definition of individual happiness is to do whatever one person wants. The definition of individual happiness has been given out by both eastern and western scholars since the ancient time. And they might be useful for the dream hunters in the modern world.

As Confucius said, people would be divided according to their features and even the natural creatures would get together according to their races (Yao, 2000, p176). To seek the individual happiness, one should obey the natural rule and live with other people in a harmony. It could be suspected that Confucius believes that individual could not pursue happiness without the help of others and out of the society. One should stay with others who are in the same group with him or her. In the text. Allie Fox has always believed that he could live out of the society and without others’ help he could build up his own country. Also, he believes that human being ruin the world he loves so he would found another one. With the understanding of Confucius, Allie Fox’s action is not for hunting happiness, but it is his hate for the society.

In Buddhism, the happiness from the external source would be regarded as bad. And this theory seems like the one Allie has in his mind. He thinks that the world is too complicated at that time. So he wants to build up a simple one. However, according to Buddhism, the individual happiness should be pursued by changing the internal elements in human beings (Gyatso, 2003, p3). Instead of building a new country or even a new world. Human beings should always self-exam their life style, their attitude and other things in this kind in order to find peace in daily life. And the peace in mind would be the highest level of individual happiness in this world.

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On the other hand, Western Though holds a different explanatio for happiness. According to Plato and Aristotle’s thought, society is formed by people and governed by law. People could seek their happiness in the society under the ruling of law (Skirbekk & Gilje, 2001, p89). Even in Utopia, people should obey certain rule and live in a group. To seek happiness without the help of others or found a country which would have the pure and simple happiness could be only a dream.

According to eastern and western thoughts, though the modern society is complicated and people would have lots of trouble in the society in daily life, to build up a country or found a civilization of pure happiness out of the whole society could be only a dream. From the eastern and western thoughts, it could be suspected that individual happiness would be connected to the whole society and even the external environment. Allie Fox believed that he could build up a Utopia in the jungle without the help from modern society could be a dream. And it could be suspected that even this society could be built up, it then would follow the rule of the modern society and would have certain law to govern the country and limited the individual happiness of the people live in it.


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