Ayn Rand on Personal Happiness 安. 兰德论个体尊严与个体幸福
Your Happiness Is On Yourself Alone
"Free Beings" vs. "Chinese" Series
价值一语： Words of Value:
While not all the time one is responsible for his own misery and misfortune, he is always responsible for his own happiness. --- Dennis Prager
虽然一个人并不总对他自身的不幸与痛苦负责任，他却永远对他的幸福承担全部责任。 --- Dennis Prager
The ones who want to escape from misery and pain will always find excuses/pretenses for their own personal irresponsibility. Only the ones who pursue freedom and happiness will have the courage to take their own individual responsibility for their actions and words. --- Kai Chen
永远逃避痛苦与不幸的人们也会永远为自己的懦弱与胆怯寻找借口与托词。 只有无畏追求自由与幸福的人们才会为自身个体的言论与行为负责任。 --- 陈凯
By Kai Chen 陈凯 （Written 11/14/2006，Reprint 5/10/2011）
Think a little more about the above quote from the conservative talk show host Dennis Prager, maybe you will have better understanding of the conservative philosophy.
All despotic societys' philosophies/doctrines promise the people under their rules happiness if they walk the authorities' lines: Nazi Germany under Hitler promised 3,000 years of a great Reich with prosperity and happiness for all if German people observed the Nazi ideology. Communist societies such as China and USSR also promised their people great happiness if they followed the communist and socialist morality of individuals being nothing and the collective being everything. Now the Islamic fundamentalists guarantee their followers if they die for Allah, they will have 72 virgins waiting for them in heaven. Leftists in the West also often promise the poor and the unfortunate that if they vote for a big government, they will have happier lives with no worries.
In Contrast, free societies and the conservative teachings have never promised and will never promise individuals their happiness if they observe the principle of freedom, justice and human dignity. They only make sure that individuals in a free society are truly free - free from others' obstructions and interferences. This is to ensure that one's misery and misfortune do not come from other entities and individuals. And one's happiness will never be the result of others' pity and handouts from government and will always be the result of one's own virtue, character, talent and hard work, and maybe a little luck as well. As a result, proven by empirical evidence, people who treasure freedom will often find their own happiness. And people who dream of happiness as the result of government's benevolence and power elite's sympathy/handout are often the people of great misery and misfortune.
Freedom will NOT always result in an individual's happiness, for freedom entails danger and risk-taking, and most of all, freedom entails personal responsibility. Yet without freedom, one will never have any possibility to be truly happy. No matter how comfortable one is in a cage, fed by some masters who control one's life and destiny, one will never have a chance to find the unique meaning of his own existence, to find his true love and happiness. Only free people can be truly creative, productive and progressive. Only free people can be truly happy with a chance to find true love, personally and professionally.
Yes, indeed, Mao and his cohorts of Chinese communists, despotic Chinese cultural tradition and the Chinese language itself have caused the Chinese individuals a lot of confusion, misery and suffering. But should these entities be also responsible for our happiness? Are they able to give us happiness? Should we expect them to give us happiness? If we have expectations that others, be it an ideology or some people (people in our family or some self-claimed saviors), should promise, provide and guarantee our happiness, does that imply we are ultimately the roots of our own problems and unhappiness by these insidious expectations??
I have sensed now in China there is an emergence of Neo-Nazism and Neo-Collectivism that promise the Chinese people their happiness if they walk the line of self-deception and self-castration. And culture-wise, the Chinese are very vulnerable to such a deceit and confusion. That is part of the reason the Chinese have never accepted the principle of freedom and individual responsibility. They have yet to grasp the truth:
"While one is not always responsible for his own misery and misfortune, one is ultimately always responsible for his own happiness."
I rest my case.