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Cultivate happiness

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  • - life-long interest
    - universal human goal
    - philosophers, theologists, spiritual seekers, poets, writers thousands of years; now human scientists: psychologists, economists (GNH index); natural scientists—neuroscientists (increased activities in specific brain centers associated w/ happiness & joy—like tingling, goose bumps, sighing, our hearts beat with joy, our blood pressure rises, we shake our heads in amazement and wonder. So, as humans, we all possess the hardware for feeling joy and happiness.
    ); speech-makers & politicians; doctors, teachers, parent, the Thai people are specialists in it! e.g. ‘jai’ kept me & my husband here; - You are experts, too—you all experience happiness & you all know it—it’s being human
    - just ‘representing’ smthg already known
    - PhD in Positive Psychology!
    - read Daniel Goleman & Dalai Lama’s Destructive Emotions in 2004; Golemans EIQ; Paul Ekman’s work on reading faces
    - speech to grad seniors
    - content for ToK—emotion lesson (next slide)
  • - don’t have to work at it—hard-wired, survival of species?
    - most comfortable airplane seat/ hotel room—room w/ a view; best slice of pizza; friendly face in a crowd; favorite music/ book/ movie; fresh popcorn; the best shoes; silence over noise; best color—niece’s BR e.g.
  • 2nd
    - nature and/ or nurture—genetically-bestowed
    - some higher/ lower as default level
    - HS studies done: lottery winners— 1st yr. baselines rose significantly; after 1yr. returned to baseline
    - classic HS study 1978: parapalegics (spinal cord victims)—1st yr. baseline sig. lowered... returned to baseline
    - diff. to affect baseline, but intriguing to consider possibilities
  • - B. tasked w/ passing test to win hand of beloved Portia
    - Must choose between gold, silver, lead chests—only one contains permission for marriage fr. P’s father
    - Asks Q: knows distinction—knows deeper level beyond ‘all that glitters...’
    - Selects lead chest and finds the treasure he seeks
  • - Goleman & Dalai Lama’s classifications
    - Many types/ labels depending, not all listed here
    - combinations

  • Most fleeting, most enjoyable:
    - fun, entertainment—parties, friends, movies, games, sports—make us laugh and forget our worries
    - we seek out most fleeting
    - notice when finished, so is feeling of happiness
  • Next: Sense pleasures: chocolate; strawberry ice cream; the smell of jasmine; sex; drugs or alcohol; game-playing—anything directly tied to senses (quality of addiction—seratonin & dopamine)
    - difficult to escape, can feel empty (or full!) afterwards, left wanting, so continue cycle
  • Next: smthg exciting
    - traveling to new country, trekking in a remote spot, skydiving or deep sea diving—smthg new/ different/ smthg to boast of later, smthg never tried before, the higher experience—the diff exp
    - what excitement—it lingers longer, but soon memories fade, return for the next
  • Wonder:
    - often tied to nature—the boundless, inexplicable
    - approaching the enduring: the night sky; the breath-taking sunset; a new leaf unfolding; kittens being born (a baby?); writing poetry
    - we love it—yearn for it
    - warms our soul at some level
  • Fiero = Italian (no word in Eng) Kwam pak poom jai. = feeling of pride & happiness mixed: feeling immediately following a challenge successfully accomplished
    - Great Chinese State Circus Swan Lake e.g.—amazing performance
    - Jeff’s TedTalks Presentation
    - winning a medal; winning—accomplishing
    - we want more—nice cycle of enduring happiness
    - can have combinations of wonder & fiero—Karen’s new baby
  • We make others happy, we feel happy, we help someone, we feel happy (teaching?)—the more virtuous kind of H
    - elevation—connotation
    - rejuvenating cycle
    - a joy to help others, sustainable, fulfilling, enduring
  • - Deepest level of H; a state of H
    - most enduring, fulfilling, satisfying
    - put feet up at end of day & feel an inner peace w/o any external stimuli
    - building up to the enduring state of mind from other higher levels?
    - Results from a raised baseline level?
  • To conclude from another Asian perspective...

  • Happiness

    1. 1. Happiness
    2. 2. Underlying Assumptions Seeking happiness natural
    3. 3. Underlying Assumptions Baseline levels
    4. 4. Shakespeare’s Merchant of Venice “Does what I am about to do bring happiness, or will it bring me pleasure?” Bassanio Portia
    5. 5. Types of Happiness fleeting enduring
    6. 6. Types of Happiness fleeting Amusement, fun, entertainment
    7. 7. Types of Happiness fleeting Sense pleasures/ Hedonistic Addictions
    8. 8. Types of Happiness fleeting Excitement & Novelty
    9. 9. Types of Happiness Wonder enduring
    10. 10. Types of Happiness ‘Fiero’ enduring
    11. 11. Types of Happiness Gratitude & Elevation enduring
    12. 12. Types of Happiness Calm Peacefulness enduring
    13. 13. “If you want happiness... for an hour—take a nap; for a day—go fishing; for a month—get married; for a year—inherit a fortune; for a lifetime—help someone else...” - Chinese Proverb
    14. 14. Merchant of Venice: http://www.shakespeare-1.com/plot-summaries/bsshk11h/themerchantofvenice.html Reaching: http://www.flickr.com/photos/jpn/523108594/ Amusement Park: http://www.flickr.com/photos/oh-barcelona/4172116012/sizes/s/ Hedonistic Addiction: http://www.flickr.com/photos/rufusmclain/88083984/sizes/m/ Calm: http://www.flickr.com/photos/raymondbphotos/1103952795/sizes/m/ Sky Diving: http://www.flickr.com/photos/rufusmclain/88083984/sizes/m/ Wonder: http://www.flickr.com/photos/claudio_ar/2812717196/sizes/m/ Ballet Dance Movie clip http://www.nzwide.com/swanlake.htm Gratitude: http://www.flickr.com/photos/jonathonlb/4744298262/sizes/m/