Theme of Happiness in the Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas

Omelas is a place that seems like an ideal place to live. The people who live in Omelas have the perfect life with no worries. The problem is you cannot achieve complete happiness without some sacrifices. Which the people of Omelas had make a sacrafice, they had to deal with the sacrifice of a small child being neglected to achieve their ultimate happiness. Some of the citizens did not agree with the way the child was being treated and chose to leave Omelas and not be a part of something that was so wrong.

This raises the question “Is Omelas really the best place to be with ultimate happiness? When you have to treat someone so poorly to achieve your happiness, this is not the way to live life. The people of Omelas seem to be happy, but it seems like they may just be content with the life they are living. They seem very judgmental towards others which is not a happy way to live. The flute player plays beautiful music but is lonely. He is lonely because people are jealous of him and the beautiful music that he makes. Their lives are supposed to be lived by not doing anything morally wrong, but they are always judging people. The way the people of Omelas live their lives is by thinking they are better than someone else.

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Sex is something that people sometimes use as an escape; the people of Omelas embrace this and engage in sexual activities all the time. The child shows that the people of Omelas have something to push all of their problems and blame on just so that they can live a happy life. It is an easy choice to walk away, so are the people that walk away more compassionate towards the child or is it equal to the people that are staying? The ethical thing to do if you are living in Omelas is to walk away if there is nothing you can do to help the child.

People that choose to walk away from Omelas have morals and cannot deal with living a life of happiness, if it means another person is miserable. The people who leave decide to choose their own happiness, which is what someone should do. You should do what makes you happy and create your happiness yourself. Someone or something should not create your happiness. Even though these people are leaving Omelas, they are not helping the child. They are just ignoring the situation so that they no longer have to deal with it themselves.

It is in our human nature to help people; the people of Omelas are choosing to ignore this, even if they are leaving. The story “The Ones Who Walk Away From Omelas,” relates to the way we live our lives in society. There are people all over the world that need help with poverty, illness, etc. and only a few people step in to help. People do not step in to help because they are scared of losing what seems to be important to them at that moment. Every person should be treated equally no matter the circumstances. If they are not being treated equally it is in our human nature to help them.

The child who is locked away represents all of the people that society is not helping and choosing to ignore. What is true happiness? The way Ursula describes happiness in the story is very materialistic over mental happiness. People would rather choose mental happiness over physical happiness. Mental happiness is something that a person can create themselves. The people that decide to leave have no desire for physical happiness and materialistic things. There needs to be a balance between the two. When people leave Omelas they can create that balance by themselves because they do not have to listen to the rules of Omelas.

This is a huge benefit of leaving Omelas. You do not have to listen to rules and you can create your own balance between mental and physical happiness if you wanted. The majority of society would choose to have mental pleasure over physical pleasure, if they had to pick between one or the other. In “The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas;” the people were given the option to choose one or the other. The people that walked away chose mental happiness the people that stayed chose physical happiness. The way Ursula writes the story you can think Omelas is anywhere.

Omelas could be a different planet or universe. There are many different ways you can interpret the story, it all depends on your moral beliefs. Some people could look at the child suffering as a good thing because it brings them happiness and they do not have a care in the world about anyone else but themselves. People could also view Omelas as a horrible place and that it brings no happiness. The people that think it brings no happiness are people who care about others well-being. The way I view the story is Omelas is a bad place and the setting is here, our world, and we are the people.

It is a reoccurring problem in our society that in order for most of society to be happy someone needs to suffer. People that work in sweatshops are benefitting the majority of society but are suffering. People in our society do not stop buying items so that the people in sweatshops no longer have to suffer. The setup of the story is useful because it can be applied to many different situations. It raises the question of morality, also makes people more aware of the issues. According to utilitarianism, happiness is the key to understanding morality. But happiness is what you make it.

Someone or some society cannot make you happy inside and out. The way you want to live your life and the beliefs you have, if you follow them to the best of your ability, will result in achieving ultimate happiness for yourself. This means that things are moral according to your beliefs, not the beliefs of others or other societies. Happiness is pleasurable and gives you the absence of pain; it is everyone’s ultimate goal to achieve happiness.

Works Cited

Guin, Ursula Le. The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas. N. p. : n. p. , n. d. PDF File. Web. 4 Nov. 2012. <http://www-rohan. sdsu. edu/faculty/dunnweb/rprnts. omelas. pdf>.

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Theme of Happiness in the Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas. (2017, Jan 26). Retrieved from