Happiness 2.0

We are somewhat happier than our ancestors, the increase in our well-being is far less than we might have expected. In the Stone Age, the average human had at his or her disposal about 4,000 calories of energy per day. This included not only food, but also the energy invested in preparing tools, clothing, art and campfires. Today Americans use on average 228,000 calories of energy per person per day, to feed not only their stomachs but also their cars, computers, refrigerators and televisions. The average American thus uses sixty times more energy than the average Stone Age hunter-gatherer. Is the average American sixty times happier?

In ancient agricultural societies human violence caused about 15 per cent of all deaths, during the twentieth century violence caused only 5 per cent of deaths, and in the early twenty-first century it is responsible for about 1 per cent of global mortality. In 2012 about 56 million people died throughout the world; 620,000 of them died due to human violence (war killed 120,000 people, and crime killed another 500,000). In contrast, 800,000 committed suicide, and 1.5 million died of diabetes. Sugar is now more dangerous than gunpowder! So are we still happy?

The glass ceiling of happiness is held in place by two stout pillars, one psychological, the other biological. On the psychological level, happiness depends on expectations rather than objective conditions. We don’t become satisfied by leading a peaceful and prosperous existence. Rather, we become satisfied when reality matches our expectations. The bad news is that as conditions improve, expectations balloon. Dramatic improvements in conditions, as humankind has experienced in recent decades, translate into greater expectations rather than greater contentment. If we don’t do something about this, our future achievements too might leave us as dissatisfied as ever.

On the biological level, both our expectations and our happiness are determined by our biochemistry, rather than by our economic, social or political situation. We never react to events in outside world, but only to sensations in our own bodies.

You don’t have to score the winning goal in the World Cup Final to feel such sensations. If you receive an unexpected promotion at work, and start jumping for joy, you are reacting to the same kind of sensations. The deeper parts of your mind know nothing about football or about jobs. They know only sensations. If you get a promotion, but for some reason don’t feel any pleasant sensations – you will not feel satisfied. The opposite is also true. If you have just been fired (or lost a decisive football match), but you are experiencing very pleasant sensations (perhaps because you popped some pill), you might still feel on top of the world.

The bad news is that pleasant sensations quickly subside and sooner or later turn into unpleasant ones. Even scoring the winning goal in the World Cup Final doesn’t guarantee lifelong bliss. In fact, it might all be downhill from there. Similarly, if last year I received an unexpected promotion at work, I might still be occupying that new position, but the very pleasant sensations I experienced on hearing the news disappeared within hours. If I want to feel those wonderful sensations again, I must get another promotion. And another. And if I don’t get a promotion, I might end up far more bitter and angry than if I had remained a humble pawn.

This is all the fault of evolution. For countless generations our biochemical system adapted to increasing our chances of survival and reproduction, not our happiness. The biochemical system rewards actions conducive to survival and reproduction with pleasant sensations. But these are only an ephemeral sales gimmick. We struggle to get food and mates in order to avoid unpleasant sensations of hunger and to enjoy pleasing tastes and blissful orgasms. But nice tastes and blissful orgasms don’t last very long, and if we want to feel them again we have to go out looking for more food and mates.

The biochemical pursuit of happiness is also the number one couse of crime in the world. People drink alcohol to forget, they smoke pot to feel peaceful, they take cocaine and methamphetamines to be sharp and confident, whereas Ecstasy provides ecstatic sensations and LSD sends you to meet Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds. What some people hope to get by studying, working or raising a family, others try to obtain far more easily through the right dosage of molecules. This is an existential threat to the social and economic order, which is why countries wage a stubborn, bloody and hopeless war on biochemical crime.

If I identify happiness with fleeting pleasant sensations, and crave to experience more and more of them, I have no choice but to pursue them constantly. When I finally get them, they quickly disappear, and because the mere memory of past pleasures will not satisfy me, I have to start all over again. Even if I continue this pursuit for decades, it will never bring me any lasting achievement; on the contrary, the more I crave these pleasant sensations, the more stressed and dissatisfied I will become. To attain real happiness, humans need to slow down the pursuit of pleasant sensations, not accelerate it.

At present, humankind has far greater interest in the biochemical solution. No matter what monks in their Himalayan caves or philosophers in their ivory towers say, for the capitalist juggernaut, happiness is pleasure. Period. With each passing year our tolerance for unpleasant sensations decreases, and our craving for pleasant sensations increases. Both scientific research and economic activity are geared to that end, each year producing better painkillers, new ice-cream flavours, more comfortable mattresses, and more addictive games for our smartphones, so that we will not suffer a single boring moment while waiting for the bus.

Homodues
Yuval Noah Harai

2020©Nagstrong12
All Rights Reserved

Understanding Life

Life in it’s evolutionary perspective is an incomplete measure of success. It judges everything by the criteria of survival and reproduction, with no regard for individual suffering and happiness. Like humans, domesticated chickens and cattle may well be an evolutionary success story, but they are also among the most miserable creatures that ever lived. The domestication of animals was founded on a series of brutal practices that only became crueller with the passing of the centuries.

The natural lifespan of wild chickens is about seven to twelve years, and of cattle about twenty to twenty-five years. In the wild, most chickens and cattle died long before that, but they still had a fair chance of living for a respectable number of years. In contrast, the vast majority of domesticated chickens and cattle are slaughtered at the age of between a few weeks and a few months, because this has always been the optimal slaughtering age from an economic perspective.

Egg-laying hens, dairy cows and draught animals are sometimes allowed to live for many years. But the price is subjugation to a way of
life completely alien to their urges and desires. It’s reasonable to assume,
for example, that bulls prefer to spend their days wandering over open prairies in the company of other bulls and cows rather than pulling carts
and ploughshares under the yoke of a whip-wielding ape. In order to turn bulls, horses, donkeys and camels into obedient draught animals, their natural instincts and social ties had to be broken, their aggression and sexuality contained, and their freedom of movement curtailed. Farmers developed techniques such as locking animals inside pens and cages, bridling them in harnesses and leashes, training them with whips and cattle prods, and mutilating them.

Cows, goats and sheep produce milk only after giving birth to calves, kids and lambs, and only as long as the youngsters are suckling. To continue a supply of animal milk, a farmer needs to have calves, kids or lambs for suckling, but must prevent them from monopolising the milk. One common method throughout history was to simply slaughter the calves and kids shortly after birth, milk the mother for all she was worth, and then get her pregnant again. This is still a very widespread technique. In many modern dairy farms a milk cow usually lives for about five years before being slaughtered. During these five years she is almost constantly pregnant, and is fertilised within 60 to 120 days after giving birth in order to preserve maximum milk production. Her calves are separated from her shortly after birth. The females are reared to become the next generation of dairy cows, whereas the males are handed over to the care of the meat industry.

A modern calf in an industrial meat farm. Immediately after birth the calf is separated from its mother and locked inside a tiny cage not much bigger than the calf’s own body. There the calf spends its entire life – about four months on average. It never leaves its cage, nor is it allowed to play with other calves or even walk – all so that its muscles will not grow strong. Soft muscles mean a soft and juicy steak. The first time the calf has a chance to walk, stretch its muscles and touch other calves is on its way to the slaughterhouse. In evolutionary terms, cattle represent one of the most successful animal species ever to exist. At the same time, they are some of the most miserable animals on
the planet.

Today these animals are often mass-produced in factory-like facilities, their bodies shaped in accordance with industrial needs. They pass their entire lives as cogs in a giant production line, and the length and quality of their existence is determined by the profits and losses of business corporations. Even when the industry takes care to keep them alive, reasonably healthy and well fed, it has no intrinsic interest in the animals social and psychological needs.

They feel strong urges to scout their environment, forage and peck around, determine social hierarchies, build nests and groom themselves. But the egg industry often locks the hens inside tiny coops, and it is not uncommon for it to squeeze four hens to a cage, each given a floor space of about twenty-five by twenty-two centimetres. The hens receive sufficient food, but they are unable to claim a territory, build a nest or engage in other natural activities. Indeed, the cage is so small that hens are often unable even to flap their wings or stand fully erect. Male chicks and imperfect female chicks are picked off the conveyor belt and are then asphyxiated in gas chambers,
dropped into automatic shredders, or simply thrown into the rubbish, where they are crushed to death. Hundreds of millions of chicks die each year in such hatcheries.

Pigs are among the most intelligent and inquisitive of mammals, second perhaps only to the great apes. Yet industrialised pig farms routinely confine nursing sows inside such small crates that they are literally unable to turn around (not to mention walk or forage). The sows are kept in these crates day and night for four weeks after giving birth. Their offspring are then taken away to be fattened up and the sows are
impregnated with the next litter of piglets.

They diary cows live almost all their allotted years inside a small enclosure; standing, sitting and sleeping in their own urine and
excrement. They receive their measure of food, hormones and
medications from one set of machines, and get milked every few hours by another set of machines. The cow in the middle is treated as little
more than a mouth that takes in raw materials and an udder that produces a commodity. Treating living creatures possessing complex emotional worlds as if they were machines is likely to cause them not
only physical discomfort, but also much social stress and psychological
frustration.

Just as the Atlantic slave trade did not stem from hatred towards Africans, so the modern animal industry is not motivated by animosity. Again, it is fuelled by indifference. Most people who produce and consume eggs, milk and meat rarely stop to think about the fate of the chickens, cows or pigs whose flesh and emissions they are eating. Those who do think often argue that such animals are really little different from machines, devoid of sensations and emotions, incapable of suffering. Ironically, the same scientific disciplines which shape our milk machines and egg machines have lately demonstrated beyond reasonable doubt that mammals and birds have a complex sensory and emotional make-up. The conclusion was inescapable: animals must have psychological needs and desires that go beyond their material requirements, and if these are not fulfilled, they will suffer greatly!

Around the time that Homo sapiens was elevated to divine status by humanist religions, farm animals stopped being viewed as “life” that could feel pain and distress, and instead came to be treated as machine.

SAPIENS

Yuval Noah Harari

2020©Nagstrong12

All Rights Reserved.

[Images are taken from google]

Understanding Happiness

If you were an eighteen year-old youth in a small village 5,000 years ago you’d probably think you were good-looking because there were only fifty other men in your village and most of them were either old, scarred and wrinkled, or still little kids. But if you are a teenager today you are a lot more likely to feel inadequate. Even if the other guys at school are an ugly lot, you don’t measure yourself against them but against the movie stars, athletes and supermodels you see all day on television, Facebook and giant billboards.

What is happiness for you?

Winning a lottery? Buying new house? A promotion? True love?

Let me clarify this for you, Nobody was ever made happy by winning the lottery, buying a house, getting a promotion or even finding true love. People are made happy by one thing and one thing only – pleasant sensations in their bodies. The complex system of nerves, neurons, synapses and various biochemical substances such as serotonin, dopamine and oxytocin!

A person who just won the lottery or found new love and jumps from joy is
not really reacting to the money or the lover. She is reacting to various
hormones coursing through her bloodstream, and to the storm of electric signals flashing between different parts of her brain.

Evolution has moulded us to be neither too miserable nor too happy. It enables us to enjoy a momentary rush of pleasant sensations,but these never last for ever. Sooner or later they subside and give place to unpleasant sensations.

For example, evolution provided pleasant feelings as rewards to males
who spread their genes by having sex with fertile females. If sex were not accompanied by such pleasure, few males would bother. At the same
time, evolution made sure that these pleasant feelings quickly subsided. If orgasms were to last for ever, the very happy males would die of hunger for lack of interest in food, and would not take the trouble to look for additional fertile females.

Think for a moment of your family and friends. You know some
people who remain relatively joyful, no matter what befalls them. And
then there are those who are always disgruntled, no matter what gifts
the world lays at their feet. We tend to believe that if we could just change our workplace, get married, finish writing that novel, buy a new
car or repay the mortgage, we would be on top of the world. Yet when
we get what we desire we don’t seem to be any happier. Buying cars and
writing novels do not change our biochemistry. They can startle it for a
fleeting moment, but it is soon back to its set point.

Nothing captures the biological argument better than the famous New
Age slogan: ‘Happiness Begins Within.’ Money, social status, plastic
surgery, beautiful houses, powerful positions – none of these will bring
you happiness. Lasting happiness comes only from serotonin, dopamine
and oxytocin.

That’s one option. Another is that the findings demonstrate that happiness is not the surplus of pleasant over unpleasant moments. Rather, happiness consists in seeing one’s life in its entirety as meaningful and worthwhile.

Hence any meaning that people ascribe to their lives is just a “delusion”. The scientist who says her life is meaningful because she increases the store of human knowledge, the soldier who declares that his life is meaningful because he fights to defend his homeland, and the entrepreneur who finds meaning in
building a new company are no less delusional than their medieval counterparts who found meaning in reading scriptures, going on a
crusade or building a new cathedral.

So perhaps happiness is synchronising one’s personal delusions of meaning with the prevailing collective delusions. As long as my personal narrative is in line with the narratives of the people around me, I can convince myself that my life is meaningful, and find happiness in that conviction.

So I have two alternate happinesses with me.

One. If happiness is based on feeling pleasant sensations, then in order to be happier we need to re-engineer our biochemical system.

Two. If happiness is based on feeling that life is meaningful, then in order to be happier we need to delude ourselves more effectively.

This is quite a depressing conclusion. So let me conclude again. Happiness is no more than fleeting vibrations, changing every moment, like the ocean waves. If five minutes ago I felt joyful and purposeful, now these feelings are gone, and I might well feel sad and dejected. So if I want to experience pleasant feelings, I have to constantly chase them, while driving away the unpleasant feelings. Even if I succeed, I immediately have to start all over again, without ever getting any lasting reward for my troubles.

So why so struggle to achieve that disappears as soon as it arises??

SAPIENS

Yuval Noah Harari

©2020Nagstong12

All Rights Reserved

Images are taken from Pinterest.com

To the shortest thing in my life

I’m being the best smarterrichersexier and popular than rest of human beings. Spending all my life in a wonderfully fulfilling job that save my planet one day. Being such a complex man is amazing. Life becomes selfie-ready to bang all the day. But’…

To generalise is to be an idiot I can’t even think of affording a smile right now haha!

Because you need a dream.. a plan.. work hard and most importantly money or right that people around you. Or you will ended up like me or that one looking in the garbage for food…..

Their world is organised, it’s own meeting places, customs and traditions, their libidinous lust! Yes, I don’t have goals. I don’t have talents. I don’t have things to be happy. Yet.. I wake up every day?

I survived halfway between being here and gone. I settle for the thought of calling her on the phone. Her melancholic smile…

She is not in the rainbow, she is not in the rain. She claimed to love the poets with her eyes passion bright. But I never speak lightly to her. My words never support her thesis. And… on my worst days “I am a poet!”

Copyright@2019Nagstrong12

All Rights Reserved

God Online

I walked to my door.

I find it so impossible to understand the gravity of his age.

My surname was burning unbroken in his voice.

His dreadful potential sound is hurting everything around me.

I pendulate between mania and depression, opened the door.

A Salesman !!

And I bought a ripe phase of the word Isifo

bohemian

However i was like choose not to met with people, prefer to have a freedom of physical distance. It’s not that people are very oppressive. I usually not make friends. More often than not I’m adopted by another extrovert friend…

I am grateful for them, and for their feeling of being connected with me. My gratitude is nothing spiritual, spiritually my mind is a dump. Putting me in someone’s focal point and disappointed of being not focussed is damn thing. Ugly.

I find there is much joy in dim-light-darkness, my mental to-do lead me to the morbific thoughts in black and white existence. Yeah… Once i led myself to some of the deepest and most consuming feeling of happiness..

“She hold my hand, take me to the garden, we smiled listen to the birds, she always hugged me, i always told her my love”

Things never be the same again. Somehow I have able to taking all the pieces with me and no matter why i carry them. Bohemian?

I make no memories

Life is a long story about how you died. My story has started already.

I born. Then came to do all the hard work here on the earth to make thousands of memories. Die one day.

The weird thing is that i hate all this labour toil under the hot sun. The sun has burned my skin. I am so dark. Unlovable… Mine is a life in the life of the hailstones of the hailstones. All the thousand memories seems so empty. Blossom beyond blossoming i saw no flower, no spring..

Some souls never saved in memory. They are to be remembered everyday. They are loved and admired everyday. May i held on; hug you tightly and not let you go. But’ turn your eyes away. Just overcome me. Do not stare at me, i am so dark. Unlovable..

She walks in beauty, like the night Of cloudless climes and starry skies;
And all that’s best of dark and bright Meet in her aspect and her eyes
– Lord Byron

Anbe Shivamagum

For obvious reasons it is no wonder the planet and it’s people are written in pain. You’re one of those people, who believe in some fictional friend in the heaven and his invisible advocates.

Suffering has human form on earth. Suffering is seen as a part of living until we reach moksha.

Aham is the supreme i awareness!

Shivam is liberation!!

Shivam is patron of death and destruction. Truly nothing is destructed, but reincarnation of the state of mind. Between the end of one thought and beginning of other, Shivam exist as a female silence. Shivam embodies her existence.

She is Shivam. She can’t condemn me; supreme Shiva doesn’t believe in heaven or a hell to put me in. In her elegance, my life shine with pure calmness. In her devotion, I reach moksha..

Shivam is love…

Anbe Shivamagum..

I Feel Grey

I constantly aware of an absence. Each and every thing i write is revolve around that absence.

Absence may be an inactive sadness or an indolent wish. Some how it triggers my senses and live again with the bygone. The presence of absence control me as long as it stays as a secret. It’s dark energy galvanize me at times. Thus we co-exist in peace..

I love to be in this alternate reality. No season getting colder here… No sun is ruling here.. I feel grey!! Depression is torn on my table, half-attended.

“No matter where I wander I’m still haunted by your name

The portrait of your beauty stays the same

Standing by the ocean wondering where you’ve gone

If you’ll return again

Where is the ring I gave to Nancy Spain?”

– Christy Moore [Nancy Spain]