The Constant Desire for More Pleasure…

Maarten Hunink

23 augustus 2014
Maarten Hunink

Because who doesn’t want more pancakes?

Today I was eating a pancake, because it was so invitingly laying there on the kitchen counter. And then when I finished it, I wanted another one. Thankfully there was another one, the last one, so I ate that one as well… And then I stood there for a moment, wondering: “And now what?” So I took my phone, unlocked it, and checked if there were any messages… No messages… Pufff

There is no pleasure that I haven’t actually made myself sick on.
– Philip Seymour Hoffman

Humans and maybe even all other species have a strong habit of seeking pleasure and avoiding boredom or pain. I for one do so all the time. It’s one of the reasons our species survived I guess. Now, while trying to write this post I’m aware that every now and then I just want to go and watch a silly video, or gif, or well, just about anything funny or interesting that will keep my brain entertained and cause my body to release a couple of endorphins… You know, like this:

Well, wasn’t that fun!?!

It was! That guy is awesome…

And now? Now it’s finished, gone, floops… And then afterwards I feel bored, empty and hungry for more!! And then I can find myself at 5 in the morning having watched silly videos for 8 hours… Yeah…

Some time ago I asked myself: “is pleasure happiness?”. And then I realised, it wasn’t. Pleasure is pleasure, and happiness is happiness. And what happiness is I’m still discovering every day. There are a couple of clues left by some awesome people who lived before us and I’m guessing it has something to do with understanding and love 🙂

Understanding for instance that the painful parts of life are part of the package. That the darkness makes you appreciate the light and that without mud there wouldn’t be flowers. To not always walk away from the uncomfortable parts but look at them and learn from them. In my experience life can then becomes less exhausting and calmer, more enjoyable and freer. Basically, happier.

No Mud, No Lotus
– Thich Nhat Hanh

The Constant Desire for More Pleasure… was originally published in The Monkies on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.


Wil je op de hoogte blijven van onze activiteiten? We sturen je maandelijks 1 nieuwsbrief met een overzicht. Je kan elk moment weer uitschrijven.