Howie Harris, reader and friend in Santa Rosa, shot me an email re the Happiest Country on Earth. He suggests there are between six and six and a half billion definitions of happiness in the world depending on the current population count.
I neither commend nor dispute his thought, but it does raise the question of how similar or different people actually are. I must agree though, that seeking the happiest person on earth and writing a book about him or her – would be a daunting, although worthwhile task, suitable for several lifespans.
I am only seeking the happiest country on earth, which narrows my search down to 199 choices, a nice round number and the current membership of UNESCO, if you include Aruba and the British Virgin Islands, which I do, especially this time of year.
Besides, Howie, and anyone else who cares to quibble, I only need one definition of happiness to write my book. And that’s my own. So now I’ve narrowed the choice to one! Pretty easy, huh?
I figure I can define happiness any way I want, and if I make a good case for my choice, someone will buy my book, and I’ll make $19.99.
So, I hereby limit my definition to statistically verifiable statistics. Hard numbers, okay? Does a country lean toward forgiveness as a way of life? Who knows?
Does a country have the lowest child abuse and wife-beating statistics? That I can discover and then verify by hanging out on the verandas and beaches of whatever country comes up lowest. It may well be Aruba. Or possibly the British Virgin Islands. Either would be okay with me.
Besides, I have known more than one victim of child abuse in my life and I can testify they would be happier and spend a lot less time in therapy if they hadn’t been. I wouldn’t be surprised if battered women feel the same way. So I think my list is a good start.
But I am open to suggestions for more criteria. They just have to be statistically verifiable. And if you have no idea what I’m nattering about – check out my last post below.
Photo credit: Yahoo Travel
Labels: A Panoply of Pondering