LP,

I get hung up on words very easily, like a toddler's tricycle in a snow drift.

"Physical happiness" seems insufficiently precise, almost a contradiction in terms, to me. Happiness isn't physical, or maybe I live in my head too much. Physical safety, contentment, etc. are possible. I think some people might pursue more and more extravagent solutions to meeting physical needs all the while believing that they pursue "happiness." I've done things like that.

I'm not sure that spiritual happiness is in the mind, either. I could drive myself crazy trying to apply my mind to spiritual concerns. Why am I here? Or, to borrow an idea from one of your earlier posts, why did he abuse me? Why haven't I been killed? How did I get such a beautiful wife and family? Things beyond the reach of my mind are no less real for it but my mind is not going to get me to them.

Right now, I believe that spiritual happiness depends on knowing and understanding myself. Is that just because I don't know myself very well yet? Could be. I can be physically content with shelter, food, etc. To enjoy happiness I have to have some idea what really makes me tick. What does it mean to "like myself as a person?" What lifts my spirit and inspires hope? What brings joy? How can I contribute to those things, for myself and for others? I have a lot to learn about myself and how all the different facets of my past influence who I am and how I recognize him.

Tomorrow I could have a different answer.

Thanks, I needed to write this.

Joe

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"Telemachos, your guest is no discredit to you. I wasted no time in stringing the bow, and I did not miss the mark. My strength is yet unbroken…"—The Odyssey, translated by W.H.D. Rouse