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Suppose there were love and happiness buttons in every brain that were instinctive and a natural part of life. Whenever we pushed them, we felt a surge of pleasure and fulfillment. Would you want to know what they are and where to find them? There may not be buttons, but there are some natural conditions within us that respond with pleasure whenever linked to certain types of thoughts and actions. This means that as we grope along in the dimly-lit halls of life, we might accidentally do something and discover a surge of satisfaction.
Like after eating chocolate for the first time, we might want to try it again. If we do, we will discover one of these love and happiness “buttons” that can be triggered again and again. In the case of marriage, one of these buttons includes the sexual urgings and love map that make us attractive and determine who we find attractive. Another is the delight in finding someone interesting who seems to like us. Others include the affection, intense attention, and natural satisfaction and stimulation that come with companionship. While these are familiar to most, there is one more that is often overlooked.
Living for Something Greater
We find one of these brain buttons when we discover that living for something greater than ourselves is accompanied by a deep sense of satisfaction that selfishness and self-centeredness cannot bring. In a world filled with individualism, where we examine everything in terms of its measure for ourselves alone, many are finding that an intense focus on individual fulfillment limits love and happiness. Rollo May, an American philosopher, wrote about “The New Puritanism,” explaining that in a former time, people had little sex but great passion. Nowadays, many satiate themselves with sex in the pursuit of love, which results in less passion and happiness.
In contrast, those who find the greatest love and fulfillment do so paradoxically by giving of themselves, even sacrificing, for something or some purpose greater than self-fulfillment. The forms this can take are worth real consideration.
HOW TO INCREASE LOVE AND HAPPINESS
LIVING FOR SOMETHING GREATER
CHANGE AS A SOURCE OF HAPPINESS
USE PROBLEMS TO HELP YOU GROW
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