Utopia: General Discussion

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Utopia: General Discussion

Post by Admin on Tue Sep 15, 2015 3:03 am

Utopia can be defined as the 'perfect' society, but perfection is a subjective ideal. Not only does each person experience happiness and well-being differently, but we might say that discord and unrest are normal and inevitable parts of learning and changing as individuals in society. If many people strive under a generic formula for happiness, it could stifle growth and personal freedom. The Utopia could quickly become a Dystopia. Some questions to think about:

What are some differences in the ways people experience happiness? Think about what makes you feel happy and fulfilled in life. Why do you think you experience happiness in that way?

What is happiness and well-being? Is it material plenitude? Is it the lack of unpleasant things, like disease or hunger? Is it achieving goals and a sense of identity? Something else?

The psychologist Abraham Maslow (1943) said a person must meet all of their material needs (food, shelter, etc) before they could move on to fulfil abstract needs like learning, love, and so on. Do you think it's true? Could society facilitate abstract well-being by providing a secure base of material satisfaction?

Is happiness an individualistic pursuit, or a state we achieve in community with other people?

Are unpleasant emotions and experiences a necessary and important part of life? Think of a "negative" feelng or event that helped you learn more about yourself and others.

What do you think would be the ideal conditions for a Utopian society? Would it work better in a large or small group? Voluntary or involuntary citizenship? What might such a society look like to you?

Continue the discussion with your thoughts about these or other questions relating to Utopia.

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