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Chapter 2 Happiness Sum

 

Mood is a complex thing and isn’t bound by logic or sciences, and therefor, conversation related to mood at times may enter into dangerous territory of being absurd or rubbish. In this web series our biggest concern is to not let any rubbish creep-in. This web series is a co-exploration, please do let us know when you feel any rubbish creeping in. Since there aren’t many confirmed things, we ask you to take what we say with a pinch of salt and apply your own judgement, exploration is more more important than information.     

Let’s explore it together! 

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Now coming to today’s subject ‘Happiness Sum’. Common perception about happiness is - either one is happy or is not and also that happiness has mostly to do with constructs like success, money, popularity, influence, relationships, spirituality etc. People in business are allured by money and they think that by becoming the richest person they would also become the happiest. Likewise, politicians and public figures are allured by power and influences, and similarly spiritual people think that enlightenment is the ultimate key, once they get this key, their all the sufferings will go away and they would become happy forever. 

What we are proposing is quite different. We are hypothesizing that happiness isn’t made of one thig, there are many things that constitute it. Meaning thereby, we are also proposing that rather than trying to fix it through any one tool one should first apply a full diagnostic to understand the actual cause. 

We think that happiness has two main constituents, they are like two wheels of a bicycle and for a bicycle to run properly both the wheels should be proper. Running bicycle on one wheel is not only difficult and tiring, it is damaging to the bicycle itself. Meaning thereby, an improper effort instead of solving the issue might eventually add to the suffering.  

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We are naming these two wheels as ‘biological’ and ‘social’. We are also saying that the main drive stays with the biological wheel and not with the social wheel. 

 

We are quite familiar with the social aspects, there are many but we can mainly summarize under money, relationship and spirituality. In our opinion this constitutes 30-40% happiness. People who are strongly rooted in spirituality may not agree to this. They would like to hold that spirituality is the ultimate thing and enlightenment solves all the problems. I’m not an expert in spirituality, but my submission is this – how many people in your circle are enlightened? And do you truly know what’s going-on in their mind? I would like putting spirituality at par with money and relationships and would like assigning a weightage of 10% to each of them.       

         

Now, coming to the biological bracket. There is an old saying ‘Health is the only true wealth’, people have been considering health being a wealth, but not have very consciously been putting it in the bracket of happiness. 

Till recent past humans always lived in nature, but now we haven’t only come out of the nature, we have mostly destroyed it. Our biological apparatus is designed in sync with nature and all of sudden that synchronicity is lost. When humans lived in sync with nature their biological domain was so well fulfilled that they never needed to think about it. What they could aspire was to achieve in social domain, hence, most effort went into money, relationships, spirituality etc. And that have been making people happy. Not anymore, because now what is depleting is the biological domain and what we are trying to fill is social domain. 

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Biological deficiencies are many, for now I would like to draw your attention to just three of them: 1) Germ deficiency, 2) Sun or Vitamin D deficiency, and 3) High ambient CO2. Our gut feeling has more to do with the germs that stay there than our thoughts or human cells, and our gut flora is at the verge of extinction, so are our gut feelings. Modern urban humans are nearly 75% deficient compared to nomadic tribal people. 

Think of vitamin D, it has profound connection with the mood. Depression caused by vitamin D deficiency is scientifically well established. Over 70% urban men and 90% women have vitamin D deficiency or insufficiency. This could be the reason why women are more prone to depression than the men. 

Now coming to ambient CO2. we are biologically designed to stay in an environment of 200 to 600 ppm of CO2. CO2 levels more than this lead to many physiological problems, and also bring confusion and anxiety. Most urban human’s ambient CO2 levels have shot-up to somewhere between 1000 ppm to 10000 ppm. 

I have given you examples of just three biological factors, there are over a dozen of them, and we will be going in full details with them in coming episodes. Here, I would like to draw your judgement  – if your gut feelings are extinguished because of extinction of your gut flora, if you are depressed because of vitamin D deficiency or it’s the high ambient CO2 that is making you anxious, wouldn’t be a good idea to fix these issues rather than earning more money, working more on relationships or going to one more mindfulness class.? 

We are already doing quite well in social constructs, most of us are performing over 90% levels, how much more can you achieve, there isn’t much to achieve, it’s going to only bring the burnout. Your biological domain could have depleted by 50% or 70% and just making a little effort would pay you high dividends, as there is a lot to achieve. 

Now, some of you who have judged the urgency of it might be keen to know all of it right now and you can do so by going to Moodforest website.     

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The bicycle analogy can also help us decipher why money, power and religion are addictive. Addictive things are the things that appear to be solving the problem, but do not solve the problem. They simultaneously bring dependency and damage.  

You could be suffering because of biological imbalances and trying to fix it through social construct.   

If you are in urgency to all of it right now, please go to our website. 

Also, please keep in mind social media algorithms are still not able to sense deeper stuff like this and should you need continuing on this exploration you should have subscribed the channel. 

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Try doing your happiness sum and let us know how do you fare these days. You are building an online calculator but till then you have to make your presumption only. 

In the next episode we will try looking at a bit more basic stuff – the existence and dharma itself, probably it is after understanding this diving deep in bio-happiness would make more sense.    

Thank you for your kind attention, stay fit, stay happy. 

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