here are natures born to
The Philosophy of Happiness
just as there are born musicians,
mechanics and mathematicians.
They are usually children who
came into life under right pre-natal
conditions. That is, children con-
ceived and born in love.
The mother who thanks God for the little life
she is about to bring to earth, gives her child a
more blesses endowment than if it were heir to
a kingdom or fortune.
As the majority of people, however, born
under "civilized" conditions, are unwelcome to
their mothers, it is rarely we encounter one who
has a birthright of happiness.
Youth possesses a certain buoyancy and ex-
hileration which passes for happiness, until the
real disposition of the individual asserts itself
with the passing of time.
Good health and strong vitality are great aids
to happiness; yet that they, wealth and honors
added, do not produce that much desired state
of mind we have but to look about us to observe.
One who is not born a musician needs to toil
more assiduously to acquire skill in the art, how-
ever strong his desire or great his taster, than the
So the man not endowed with joyous im-
pulses needs to set himself the task of acquiring
the habit of happiness. I believe it can be done.
To the sad or restless or discontented being I
would say: Begin each morning by resolving to
find something in the day to enjoy. Look in each
experience which comes to you for some grain of
happiness. You will be surprised to find how
much that has seemed hopelessly disagreeable
possesses either an instructive or an amusing
There is a certain happiness to be found in
the most disagreeable duty when you stop to
realize that you are getting it out of the way.
If it is one of those duties which has the un-
comfortable habit of repeating itself continually,
you can at least say you are learning patience
and perseverance, which are two great virtues
and essential to any permanent happiness in life.
Do not anticipate the happiness of to-morrow,
but discover it in to-day. Unless you are in the
profound depths of some great sorrow, you will
find it if you look for it.
Think of yourself each morning as an explorer
in a new realm. I know a man whose time is
gold, and he carefully arranged his plans to take
three hours for a certain pleasure. He lost his
way and missed his pleasure, but was full of exu-
berant delight over his "new experience." "I
missed my whole life." He was a true philos-
opher and optimist and such a man gets the very
kernel out of the nut of life.
I know a woman who had since her birth
every material blessing, health, wealth, position,
travel and a luxurious home. She was forever
complaining of the cares and responsibilities of
the latter. Finally she prevailed upon the family
to rent the home for a series of years and to live
in hotels. Now she goes about posing as a mar-
tyr, " a homeless woman." It is impossible for
such a selfishly perverted nature to know happi-
A child should be taught from its earliest life
to find entertainment in every kind of condition
or weather. If it hears its elders cursing and
bemoaning a rainy day the child's plastic mind
is quick to receive the impression that a rainy
day is a disaster.
How much better to expatriate in its presence
on the blessing of rain, and to teach it the
enjoyment of all nature's varying moods, which
other young animals feel.
Happiness must come from within in order to
respond to that which comes from without, just
as there must be a musical ear or temperament
to enjoy music.
Cultivate happiness as an art or science.
The Heart of the New Thought by Ella Wheeler Wilcox.
Chicago : The Psychic Research Company, c1902.