Defining life, happiness

I look around me and I try to define happiness. I cannot deny that when the sun comes out, life looks perfect, flawless. In this case, perfection and flawlessness bring happiness. So I continue looking. The autumn colors are still there and they too have the potential to bring happiness for one who is truly looking for it. As I look around me at the campus students who wander from corner to corner, smoke their cigarettes, drink their coffees like starving addicts, I cannot help but wonder if this too is happiness. If this is what we all look for: our coffees, our obsessions, our addictions, our personal achievements. How long can we carry on before we become tired of the ordinary, before we become bored?
Then I think of the rest of the population, the ones who faithfully practice their religions and pray for a God they idolize and worship. Perhaps it is easier to find purpose, which can also be defined as happiness, when something higher exists, like religion and faith, something that gives purpose to this otherwise pointless life.
But then again, one does not necessarily have to have a higher purpose. One can live in a society where representative democracy is practiced, but not everyone is equal, where one can become a coffee addict, living off of Starbucks or become a smoker, an alcoholic. One can live, sleep, work, dream, write, all of which can contribute to a certain degree of happiness. And if one is an insomniac, then he can enjoy sleepless nights knowing that the next day, there may be rain or snow, both of which can make him satisfied. If he hates the rain, he can wait for a sunny day and vies versa. Of course there can be no one definition of happiness. And even if there was one such equation, it would not always be solvable. Then we go back to where we started, asking the same questions and debating on faith and so on.
I like to think that life is a cycle in which happiness is achievable. At least, under this American flag, happiness exists because there is no one definition; there exists no such thing as one true answer. There are limitless ways one can gain happiness. It is just a matter of wanting it.

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