Motivations for Happiness: With Regards To The Planets of The Apes and John Mill

Essay by bouciedorkHigh School, 10th gradeA-, May 2004

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A famous philosopher, John Stuart Mill, once theorized the motivations for happiness. He explains that there were two classes; one was the external motivation from the hope of pleasing other people or God. The other motivation was the internal, which was to fulfill our "duty". He is absolutely right. Everything we do is an attempt to reach happiness, but what we do and the degree to such happiness is found is different with each individual. Some people believe that happiness is achieved through wealth, honor, pleasure, and virtue. But the reason that we thrive for happiness can be condense down to two reasons. We simply gain happiness from satisfying our duty and accomplishing in making others happy. Captain Leo from Planet of the Apes, will prove both classes of happiness motivations of John Stuart Mill.

Captain Leo is very loyal to the US space travel operation, and when he was stranded on the foreign planet, he has a great sense of duty to get off the planet and come back home.

But let's talk about what happen on the spaceship in the beginning. When the astronauts use the monkey to explore the weird occurrence outside in the vast space, the monkey gets off the track, and disappears. The monkey was not only Leo's friend, but it also his responsibility. Feeling like he had a personal duty to fulfilled, he disobeyed orders and went out to save his monkey. If he would have saved the monkey, he would have made this "other being" happy, and fulfilled a duty, making himself found some happiness. He never found his monkey, until the end of the journey, when the monkey really found him. The monkey was like a human being to Leo, so it follows Mill's class of external motivation about pleasing other...