The Happiness Hypothesis: Finding Modern Truth in Ancient Wisdom

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Basic Books, Dec 26, 2006 - Psychology - 320 pages
17 Reviews
An award-winning psychologist examines the world’s philosophical wisdom through the lens of psychological science

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User Review  - sushicat - LibraryThing

Rather than looking at psychic illness, positive psychology considers mental health and happiness. Jonathan Haidt brings together ancient knowledge and new research to give a full picture of the ... Read full review

Insightful read...

User Review  - Adam B. -

Loved this book. Really enjoyed how it relates older philosophy to new age scientific methods in regards to mental health. Parts about Budhism were intriguing and how society wants to get as far away ... Read full review

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Divinity With or Without God 10 181 213
Happiness Comes from Between
On Balance

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About the author (2006)

Jonathan Haidt is a professor of psychology at the University of Virginia. His research examines morality, the moral emotions, and the intuitive foundations of politics and religion. He is the co-editor of Flourishing: Positive Psychology and the Life Well-Lived, and the author of The Righteous Mind: Why Good People are Divided by Politics and Religion.  He lives in Charlottesville, Virginia.


"The Happiness Hypothesis is a wonderful and nuanced book that provides deep insight into the some of the most important questions in life--Why are we here?  What kind of life should we lead?  What paths lead to happiness?  From the ancient philosophers to cutting edge scientists, Haidt weaves a tapestry of the best and the brightest.  His highly original work on elevation and awe--two long-neglected emotions--adds a new weave to that tapestry.  A truly inspiring book."  -David M. Buss, author of The Evolution of Desire:  Strategies of Human Mating “In this beautifully written book, Jonathan Haidt shows us the deep connection that exists between cutting-edge psychological research and the wisdom of the ancients.  It is inspiring to see how much modern psychology informs life's most central and persistent questions."-Barry Schwartz, author of The Paradox of Choice: Why More Is Less “In our quest for happiness, we must find a balance between modern science and ancient wisdom, between East and West, and between ‘left brain’ and ‘right brain.’ Jon Haidt has struck that balance perfectly, and in doing so has given us the most brilliant and lucid analysis of virtue and well-being in the entire literature of positive psychology.  For the reader who seeks to understand happiness, my advice is: Begin with Haidt.” -Martin E.P. Seligman, Director, Positive Psychology Center at the University of Pennsylvania and author of Authentic Happiness


“Haidt is a fine guide on this journey between past and present, discussing the current complexities of psychological theory with clarity and humor. . . Haidt’s is an open-minded, robust look at philosophy, psychological fact and spiritual mystery, of scientific rationalism and the unknowable ephemeral – an honest inquiry that concludes that the best life is, perhaps, one lived in the balance of opposites.”-Bookpage

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