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Sermon on the Mount is lesson in happiness

The superficial approach of Prime Minister David Cameron's happiness index (News, July 25) demonstrates very well that our society has little understanding, or appreciation, of true happiness.

Rather than looking at indices to measure happiness, we would be better served if we focused on the Sermon on the Mount.

There we will find longer-term attributes of the happy among us, like the ability to be meek. We will also see that Jesus's mission was to let us know how we implicitly interact with each other when we are happy. In stark contrast, Old Testament's rules demonstrate what we do when we are unhappy, like 'an eye for an eye'.

This distinction becomes vitally important when we realise, as we should, that values, principles, morals and ethics, are a product of happiness and are virtually unobtainable to an unhappy person.

That's an indication of how important happiness should be to our society. But it isn't. Instead, we get measures of Gross National Product.

JOHN O'CONNELL

Derry

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