It is a quality that we all cherish and ironically it is perhaps one we yearn and strive for most when it is absent or tenuous in our lives. Yet when our lives are bountiful with happiness, we simply take it for granted, believing perhaps that this is a the most natural state of being that all humanity was meant to exist at all times in this way.
From time to time Governments have actively sought to enshrine the concept of happiness as a fundamental part of life. Recognizing that the society we all live within should be able to exist whereby all people can attain and have access to happiness. Though most certainly most of us have our own unique concept of happiness, there certainly exists some fundamental truths about happiness. That on a pure and in a fundamental way happiness is never exclusive to the rights of others. Rather when one person seeks out true happiness we also enable and make it possible for others to have access and find happiness more easily. That when one person benefits than so do we all.
This quality has been deemed so important and so necessary and fundamental to life, that on June 28, 2012, The United Nations General Assembly declared March 20th of each year as the International Day of Happiness. Bhikshuni Weisbrot, a staff member of the United Nations Development Programme, and is President of the UNSRC Society of Writers, was inspired to create a unique exhibit at the Queens Museum of Art this past March. It was a display that was up for several weeks dedicated solely to Happiness. On the 17th of March a diverse panel of speakers were invited to come and speak about this most significant subject. She was helped by many others in creating this truly wonderful exhibit which she called, ‘Happiness: A Visual Poem.’
At one point Bhikshuni mentions that it was 50 years ago that she was first at this spot, when the World’s Fair was held here in Flushing Meadow. I ask her how it feels to be back in this same location after such a long time. Experiencing perhaps in a more direct way what the World’s Fair had set out to do back then. “It’s funny, but I think it has always been my theme. I think it has just come to fruition now.” She recounts a conversation she once had with her mom in which she told her Mom, “I just want to be happy.”