“To the barefoot man, happiness is a pair of shoes. To the man with old shoes, it’s a pair of new shoes. To the man with new shoes, it’s more stylish shoes. And of course, the fellow with no feet would be happy to be barefoot.”
The words above would be perfect if it were left at that. By itself it’s a simple, concise observation of human nature: we always want more. The last line (which I left out) reads, “Measure your life by what you have, not by what you don’t have.” I would just as soon leave it out. It taints a statement of fact by attaching the assumption of contentment as a ‘good’ thing, and as a consequence can’t help but imply that human nature is ‘bad’. It’s not.
Wanting more may not be a path to happiness, strictly speaking, but it is not wrong to have desire.
Especially not when it’s really all we have.
What is in one’s nature is neither good or bad, it is simply ones nature.
(Originally posted here on May 9th, 2014)