Thanks for your contribution, sounds very interesting. Especially the “pursuit of happiness”.
I will answer later more profound, I have first to think about it…
Everything that any being ever does can be reduced to its effort to improve it’s own or other’s wellbeing (for the longer or shorter term). That’s an undeniable fact!**
Yes, but it’s about the effort. People are not perfect, and even the most rational thinking person would make wrong decisions, while trying to reach wellbeing or fulfilment. One more reason why positive-psychology is useful.
It makes sense to systematically figure out, which actions or circumstances will increase people’s long-term wellbeing/life-satisfaction/life-fulfilment/… on average. So we can minimize our wrong decisions.
Pappadave permanently denies that we can find out, which factors support long-term wellbeing on average. But psychologists for example showed that money doesn’t increase wellbeing as much as thought before. In an experiment they gave 100 test-persons 20 USD. One half of them was told to buy something nice for themself, the other half should spent the 20 Dollar for a nice surprise for a friend (e.g.: to invent him to dinner). After a week the second group (on average) rated significantly higher on life-satisfaction-questionnaires than the fist group.
=> Simplified insight: Caring about others increases our wellbeing more then caring about ourself.
Maybe it’s one of our biggest problems that “people do plenty of things that don’t make them happy” as you said. Therefore there is a need to evaluate what things are worth to be done, and that’s what positive-psychology does.
O.k. - I just realised: It’s about the term: “need”.
If your standpoint is: Actually I don’t need anything on earth as long as I know I will be in heaven after my life on earth, you may be right.
But I am asking the question: What do we need to experience more wellbeing and life-satisfaction now on earth independently what happens after life (on earth). Or which things can improve our life-quality. And I think the answer will be: There are a lot more things than just religion - good relationships, material things,… are just examples.
It’s true, psychology is a multi-paradigmatic science (freudian, behavioral, cognitive…). This has at least two reasons. Psychology is a very young discipline, it exists (as a science) scince only about one century (Freud ~1900). I think every science had it’s initial difficulties and phases of consolidation are unavoidable. The second reason depends on the object of investigation. The objects psychology investigates are: people. A human being is hard to understand and therefore psychologys insights are not as stable than other disciplin’s insights. Additional psychology’s insights are not applicable to every single person but only on the average.
This is a very interesting topic. I often ask myself how religious people experience this “union to god”. What is this? How does this feel?
When I was younger (I’m 33 now) I tried to experience more within religion. I can say: I prayed more than an average person at my age, went to church and tied to read t bible. But I never felt anything like union, joy, peace or serenity.
How do you experience these things - In which way/manner/kind?