In whatever work or research we engage in, we must begin by understanding its basic nature. Thus, let us first establish — what is happiness? What is the nature of happiness? A Chinese book titled “What is Happiness” addresses this question from the viewpoint of 155 experts from around the world. For instance, happiness is having a stable income; happiness is harmony in the family; happiness is travelling around the world; happiness is just a glass of water, etc. There is no consensus. Buddhism believes the nature of happiness is neither a steady income nor harmony in the family, neither the joy of seeing the world nor a glass of water. Although all may bring a sense of well-being, they are not the nature of happiness.
Excerpt from Luminous Wisdom Book Series: The Paper Tiger ~ The Tibetan Buddhist View on Happiness