I don’t know if it happens to you, but to me, everything sounds better in Italian. I only have to read or hear “felicità” and I immediately feel good. It takes me back to summers with my family, visiting, for example, Cinqueterre, those marvellous villages on the Mediterranean coast, with twisting roads, but which awaken all the senses because they are so beautiful. Or, I see myself enjoying ice cream in the streets of Venice among tourists from all over the world, or walking through the streets of Rome guided by the smell of pizza baking in an oven.
Happiness, on many occasions, is associated with immediacy, with the pleasure of the senses, with the fulfillment of our desires, when in reality, it is something much deeper that has more to do with the state of our soul or the health of our conscience. Happiness is being at peace. And what gives us peace and calm on a daily basis? What could we say, inwardly and on a deeper level, helps us to be happy on a daily basis?
What a question. It has certainly given rise to many volumes of philosophical debate. But if we resort to common sense, that which guides us without opening encyclopaedias from the bookshelves, what would we say makes us happy?
It is clear that this is a blog with a certain personal component, and the reader may not agree with the writer, but without wanting to convince you of anything, I am happy about somethings that may seem very simple, but that, at the same time, we must realise that it exists: the beauty of the little things that surround me.
For example: A sunrise. A blue sky. The smell of damp after a storm. A few sprigs of eucalyptus at the entrance of the house. A hot cup of tea before starting work. A tidy cupboard. A sandwich in good company. A what’s app with a “hello” from my husband at any time of the day. A snack with friends we haven’t seen for a long time. A meal with friends we see every day. Seeing a grandfather holding hands with his grandson in the street. Ironing. Reading a book in the sun. Even hanging a painting.
Little or none of what I have listed has a financial cost. But it all gives me peace. Valuing the nature that surrounds us and observing its beauty helps us realise how fortunate we are to live on a planet of astonishing grandeur. Parenthesis: I don’t know where you read me from but this weekend I visited a beautiful village 39 km from the city where I live and I had never been there before. I’m sure you too have many places to discover in your immediate surroundings that can bring “La felicità.”
Maybe you were surprised by the tidy wardrobe or the ironing. It gives me a lot of peace to open the wardrobe and see the order. I even find that aesthetically beautiful. And it shows attention to detail, and care, to look after things and keep them well and, above all, to find them both in their place and well ironed the day you look for them.
In short, all this and much more, in the context of the launch of HRF’s most recent book Happiness and Domestic Life
, will be discussed in the land of “La felicità
“, in Rome on Thursday 1 December at the Roma Tre University. Led by professor and philosopher Maria Teresa Russo, we will have a round table discussion in Italian on Felicità
. We will be joined by Antonio Petagine, Università Roma Tre, Vinicio Busacchi, Università di Cagliari and Nicola Di Stefano, CNR Roma and moderated by Professor Cecilia Costa, Roma Tre Department of Training Science.
Please get in touch with me for more details – we look forward to seeing you!