Buddha mentioned that happiness is the greatest wealth. When going through the TED Happiness Topic, The habits of happiness, Depression, the secret we share, The struggle of mental health, All kinds of minds, How does my brain work?, What makes you happy?, etc. this left me wondering what exactly is happiness, moods and metal states in a Buddhists perspective. So what exactly is happiness? How is it the greatest wealth? How can happiness analysed using the Suttas and the Abhidhamma? How can this be extended to analyzing all moods and states of the mind?

3 Answers 3


I was always under the impression that happiness was our default setting, our buddha nature. If we remove "blow away or extinguish" all the labels, bindings, and habit energies that collect what is left is happiness. True Happiness is the default state we experience when we extinguish the fires that cause suffering. This cessation of suffering can also be described as complete peace.

It is a great wealth because it is the only thing that can bring us true liberation.


Happiness might be any moment we're not analyzing what happiness is in the universal sense, and not analyzing our own personal happiness at any given moment. Happiness could be the state when we're not being self-reflective, especially about happiness.

This idea is similar to "The Game". (Which you just lost)

The Game is one of the simplest distortions of game logic ever invented; by which simply thinking about The Game causes one to lose.

When I think of the word happiness, I often associate it with these zen pencils comics.


Some teachers identify two types of happiness: one associated with immediate comforts such as food, sense pleasures, etc; the second associated with inner peace and contentment. One can observe the first comes primarily from external sources, and is not under our immediate control. Inner peace and contentment is something we can develop. To answer your question, one can come to know one's mind and gradually tame/transform one's mind through study and practice of the teaching of the Buddha.

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