Eupedia Forums
Site NavigationEupedia Top > Eupedia Forum & Japan Forum
Results 1 to 15 of 15

Thread: Is happiness genetic?

  1. #1
    Advisor Achievements:
    Three FriendsVeteranTagger First Class50000 Experience PointsRecommendation First Class
    Awards:
    Discussion Ender
    LeBrok's Avatar
    Join Date
    18-11-09
    Location
    Calgary
    Posts
    10,331
    Points
    113,888
    Level
    100
    Points: 113,888, Level: 100
    Level completed: 0%, Points required for next Level: 0
    Overall activity: 0%

    Y-DNA haplogroup
    R1b Z2109
    MtDNA haplogroup
    H1c

    Ethnic group
    Citizen of the world
    Country: Canada-Alberta



    Is happiness genetic?

    Gallup published a recent poll about people reporting positive emotions worldwide.


    Interestingly it turned out that happiest people are not the richest but people who live in Central America. I think these are countries of predominantly Native American origin.






    Gallup measured each of these positive emotions in 138 countries in 2013 by asking people whether they experienced them the previous day. Gallup compiles the "yes" results into a Positive Experience Index score for each country


    Money and Happiness
    People who make more money tend to report higher positive emotions. Last year, there was a 10-percentage-point gap globally between the highest and lowest income brackets. But not all data suggest money buys happiness. Previous research in the United States found that when these same metrics are used, a higher income level makes a significant impact on a person's overall happiness, but only up to $75,000. Above that level, income makes much less of a difference.



    Overall the whole world is getting Happier.
    And this a happy news (pan intended).






    Here is the full table:



    What is with people from Balkans and Caucasus, one of least happiest in the world?

    Full article:
    http://www.gallup.com/poll/169322/pe...motions.aspx#2
    Be wary of people who tend to glorify the past, underestimate the present, and demonize the future.

  2. #2
    Regular Member Achievements:
    1 year registered50000 Experience Points
    Aberdeen's Avatar
    Join Date
    12-11-13
    Posts
    1,838
    Points
    52,092
    Level
    70
    Points: 52,092, Level: 70
    Level completed: 68%, Points required for next Level: 458
    Overall activity: 0%

    Y-DNA haplogroup
    I1
    MtDNA haplogroup
    H4

    Ethnic group
    Scottish, English and German
    Country: Canada-Ontario



    Interesting topic, LeBrok. I think it's very difficult to define exactly what "happiness" is, and yet I think most people would tell you they know whether or not they're happy. But what makes happiness? if it's true that people in Afghanistan are happier than people in the Czech republic, happiness can't be about material comfort or personal safety, and yet I would think those two things would be important to most people's happiness. And how does happiness relate to cheerfulness? I know that some folks love to be gloomy and can't stand people who are too cheerful. And different things make different people happy - I've had some people tell me I should do such and such because it would make me happier and I think "no, that would make me miserable". And do some people value happiness more than others? I think it's a difficult question. I've always been more concerned about meaning than happiness, but I suppose that one could say that living a meaningful life is what makes some of us happy, while other folks don't seem to see it as important.

    Do you have a definition of happiness?

    And yes, one must wonder what's going on in the Balkans? Are they really that miserable, and if so, why?

  3. #3
    Advisor Achievements:
    Three FriendsVeteranTagger First Class50000 Experience PointsRecommendation First Class
    Awards:
    Discussion Ender
    LeBrok's Avatar
    Join Date
    18-11-09
    Location
    Calgary
    Posts
    10,331
    Points
    113,888
    Level
    100
    Points: 113,888, Level: 100
    Level completed: 0%, Points required for next Level: 0
    Overall activity: 0%

    Y-DNA haplogroup
    R1b Z2109
    MtDNA haplogroup
    H1c

    Ethnic group
    Citizen of the world
    Country: Canada-Alberta



    Quote Originally Posted by Aberdeen View Post
    Do you have a definition of happiness?
    I would say anything that makes you feel good, and how often one is able to do such things. That would be the environmental cues though.
    There is the genetic factor too, the ability to experience happiness. However, there is more to it. Some people are born happy easy going and almost everything makes them happy. Heck, they can sit still being happy doing nothing at all. It is like the default state of their sole is to be happy. These people could easily be happy even in miserable and poor life.
    On other hand people born in pessimistic state default are almost never happy and complain about everything.

    And yes, one must wonder what's going on in the Balkans? Are they really that miserable, and if so, why?
    Good question. Perhaps it is an inheritance of J2 people? lol

  4. #4
    Hero of Marathon Achievements:
    Tagger Second Class1000 Experience Points31 days registered
    Echetlaeus's Avatar
    Join Date
    26-03-14
    Location
    USA
    Posts
    492
    Points
    2,624
    Level
    14
    Points: 2,624, Level: 14
    Level completed: 58%, Points required for next Level: 126
    Overall activity: 99.7%


    Ethnic group
    Epirotan
    Country: Greece



    No way ! Genes have nothing to do with that, or if they have is of minor climax.

    It is mostly a result socioeconomic and geographic attributes of a society in combination with personal characteristics (for example I got divorced, death in family, I like the job I do etc.).

    I find research on happiness not robust, due to the lack of a universal definition of the term. Like a pseudo science which tries to measure the unmeasurable.

    As I said before, socioeconomic reasons are the most important, but as a project per se, must not be taken seriously.

    With respect,
    - Εχετλαίος, a dismal scientist -
    Οι ηδονές είναι θνητές, οι αρετές αθάνατες.

  5. #5
    Advisor Achievements:
    Three FriendsVeteranTagger First Class50000 Experience PointsRecommendation First Class
    Awards:
    Discussion Ender
    LeBrok's Avatar
    Join Date
    18-11-09
    Location
    Calgary
    Posts
    10,331
    Points
    113,888
    Level
    100
    Points: 113,888, Level: 100
    Level completed: 0%, Points required for next Level: 0
    Overall activity: 0%

    Y-DNA haplogroup
    R1b Z2109
    MtDNA haplogroup
    H1c

    Ethnic group
    Citizen of the world
    Country: Canada-Alberta



    Quote Originally Posted by Echetlaeus View Post
    As I said before, socioeconomic reasons are the most important, but as a project per se, must not be taken seriously.

    With respect,
    - Εχετλαίος, a dismal scientist -
    So by mostly socioeconomic try to explain why poor Central America is happier than North America and Europe.

    There are two sides to it, one is environment the other genetics, other wards nurture and nature. If you can't explain happiness or human nature in general fully by environmental factors, wouldn't you agree that there has to be a genetic part to happiness? In very simple therms, no genes, no human, no happiness.

  6. #6
    Hero of Marathon Achievements:
    Tagger Second Class1000 Experience Points31 days registered
    Echetlaeus's Avatar
    Join Date
    26-03-14
    Location
    USA
    Posts
    492
    Points
    2,624
    Level
    14
    Points: 2,624, Level: 14
    Level completed: 58%, Points required for next Level: 126
    Overall activity: 99.7%


    Ethnic group
    Epirotan
    Country: Greece



    Quote Originally Posted by LeBrok View Post
    So by mostly socioeconomic try to explain why poor Central America is happier than North America and Europe.

    There are two sides to it, one is environment the other genetics, other wards nurture and nature. If you can't explain happiness or human nature in general fully by environmental factors, wouldn't you agree that there has to be a genetic part to happiness? In very simple therms, no genes, no human, no happiness.
    Correlation does not tell me anything, causation is what I seek for.
    If an IV estimation can prove that, then I am OK.

    People in Africa seem to be happy, maybe they are happier compared to the past. Balkans are not good these days, for Economy is down and creates a plethora of problems.

  7. #7
    Regular Member Achievements:
    1 year registered50000 Experience Points
    Aberdeen's Avatar
    Join Date
    12-11-13
    Posts
    1,838
    Points
    52,092
    Level
    70
    Points: 52,092, Level: 70
    Level completed: 68%, Points required for next Level: 458
    Overall activity: 0%

    Y-DNA haplogroup
    I1
    MtDNA haplogroup
    H4

    Ethnic group
    Scottish, English and German
    Country: Canada-Ontario



    Quote Originally Posted by Echetlaeus View Post
    Correlation does not tell me anything, causation is what I seek for.
    If an IV estimation can prove that, then I am OK.

    People in Africa seem to be happy, maybe they are happier compared to the past. Balkans are not good these days, for Economy is down and creates a plethora of problems.
    Where there's correlation, if you want to say it has nothing to do with causation, you have to provide an alternative explanation. Since I can't see an alternative explanation, I'm willing to consider the possibility that happiness and unhappiness may be caused in part, perhaps even in large part, by genetics, since there definitely seems to be a genetic factor in clinical depression. It's all about body chemistry, and perhaps it can vary in different populations. Perhaps some groups are just better than others at absorbing the chemicals that produce a sense of well-being. Knowing how strongly genetics relates to depression, I'm willing to accept that explanation unless you can provide a good rationale for some other explanation.

  8. #8
    Hero of Marathon Achievements:
    Tagger Second Class1000 Experience Points31 days registered
    Echetlaeus's Avatar
    Join Date
    26-03-14
    Location
    USA
    Posts
    492
    Points
    2,624
    Level
    14
    Points: 2,624, Level: 14
    Level completed: 58%, Points required for next Level: 126
    Overall activity: 99.7%


    Ethnic group
    Epirotan
    Country: Greece



    Quote Originally Posted by Aberdeen View Post
    Where there's correlation, if you want to say it has nothing to do with causation, you have to provide an alternative explanation. Since I can't see an alternative explanation, I'm willing to consider the possibility that happiness and unhappiness may be caused in part, perhaps even in large part, by genetics, since there definitely seems to be a genetic factor in clinical depression. It's all about body chemistry, and perhaps it can vary in different populations. Perhaps some groups are just better than others at absorbing the chemicals that produce a sense of well-being. Knowing how strongly genetics relates to depression, I'm willing to accept that explanation unless you can provide a good rationale for some other explanation.
    Correlation is a necessary, not a sufficient condition. This is what I am saying.

  9. #9
    Advisor Achievements:
    VeteranThree Friends50000 Experience PointsRecommendation Second Class
    Awards:
    Posting Award
    Angela's Avatar
    Join Date
    02-01-11
    Posts
    15,552
    Points
    291,909
    Level
    100
    Points: 291,909, Level: 100
    Level completed: 0%, Points required for next Level: 0
    Overall activity: 99.6%


    Ethnic group
    Italian
    Country: USA - New York



    1 out of 1 members found this post helpful.
    I don't think it's an either/or proposition, either genetics or life circumstances, but rather a combination of both things, as other posters have said. Some people, no matter what befalls them, are able to "roll with the punches" and maintain their equilibrium and sense of enjoyment of life. Others in the same circumstances are thrown into depressions which can become clinical and life threatening. Differences in brain chemistry must account for it.

    I also think there's probably population differences.(there are, of course, also differences within populations). You just need to compare the literature and film of different countries. You can see the operation of very different temperaments and attitudes toward life.

    Of course, there's a limit to how much your brain chemistry can protect you. How happy can people be if they're in the middle of a war zone for years on end, or if hunger is always at the door?

    On the other hand, I think expectations play a role in all of this. The more sophisticated and modern the society, the more that people expect from life, and the more likely they are to be dissatisfied. My parents often said that despite the fact that people had very little in terms of material possessions when they were growing up, they were more content with life, happier if you will. I think that's probably true.

    Of course, this is all assuming we even know what happiness is...is it Cicero's "tranquility of mind"? One thing I'm pretty sure of...money, beyond the amount for the necessities of life, doesn't insure it. Rather, I think it involves feeling connected with one's world and specifically with other people. As Lord Byron put it, " all who joy would win
    Must share it,—Happiness was born a twin."


    Non si fa il proprio dovere perchè qualcuno ci dica grazie, lo si fa per principio, per se stessi, per la propria dignità. Oriana Fallaci

  10. #10
    Regular Member Achievements:
    1000 Experience PointsVeteran
    Ike's Avatar
    Join Date
    20-12-10
    Posts
    1,128
    Points
    4,720
    Level
    20
    Points: 4,720, Level: 20
    Level completed: 18%, Points required for next Level: 330
    Overall activity: 3.0%


    Country: Yugoslavia



    Quote Originally Posted by LeBrok View Post
    What is with people from Balkans and Caucasus, one of least happiest in the world?
    Don't know for about the rest, but since the induced civil war, occupation and introduction of democracy the quality of life and living conditions in Yugoslavia went below zero.

  11. #11
    Advisor Achievements:
    Three FriendsVeteranTagger First Class50000 Experience PointsRecommendation First Class
    Awards:
    Discussion Ender
    LeBrok's Avatar
    Join Date
    18-11-09
    Location
    Calgary
    Posts
    10,331
    Points
    113,888
    Level
    100
    Points: 113,888, Level: 100
    Level completed: 0%, Points required for next Level: 0
    Overall activity: 0%

    Y-DNA haplogroup
    R1b Z2109
    MtDNA haplogroup
    H1c

    Ethnic group
    Citizen of the world
    Country: Canada-Alberta



    Quote Originally Posted by Angela View Post
    I don't think it's an either/or proposition, either genetics or life circumstances, but rather a combination of both things, as other posters have said. Some people, no matter what befalls them, are able to "roll with the punches" and maintain their equilibrium and sense of enjoyment of life. Others in the same circumstances are thrown into depressions which can become clinical and life threatening. Differences in brain chemistry must account for it.
    Surely nature and nurture have huge effect on happiness. For a lack of better measurements and any consensus, lets say in 50/50 ratio.
    I love to point out importance of genetics in every human behavior, with every occasion I have. There are still too many people ignoring genetic factors and believing that people are born in "clean slate" state and they can be molded to anything with proper environment.

  12. #12
    Regular Member Achievements:
    1000 Experience Points1 year registered

    Join Date
    20-11-12
    Posts
    577
    Points
    3,220
    Level
    16
    Points: 3,220, Level: 16
    Level completed: 43%, Points required for next Level: 230
    Overall activity: 19.0%


    Country: Canada



    Quote Originally Posted by Aberdeen View Post

    And yes, one must wonder what's going on in the Balkans? Are they really that miserable, and if so, why?
    they're not more miserable. I've been there. This is a typical fake study to grab attention and viewers.

  13. #13
    Regular Member Achievements:
    1000 Experience PointsVeteran
    AgnusDei's Avatar
    Join Date
    26-06-14
    Age
    33
    Posts
    60
    Points
    2,620
    Level
    14
    Points: 2,620, Level: 14
    Level completed: 57%, Points required for next Level: 130
    Overall activity: 0%

    Y-DNA haplogroup
    E-M84
    MtDNA haplogroup
    L1b1a

    Ethnic group
    Algerian
    Country: Algeria



    Happiness is genetic is the sense that you're more likely to end up unhappy/depressed if you always have low levels of Serotonin .

  14. #14
    Advisor Achievements:
    Three FriendsVeteranTagger First Class50000 Experience PointsRecommendation First Class
    Awards:
    Discussion Ender
    LeBrok's Avatar
    Join Date
    18-11-09
    Location
    Calgary
    Posts
    10,331
    Points
    113,888
    Level
    100
    Points: 113,888, Level: 100
    Level completed: 0%, Points required for next Level: 0
    Overall activity: 0%

    Y-DNA haplogroup
    R1b Z2109
    MtDNA haplogroup
    H1c

    Ethnic group
    Citizen of the world
    Country: Canada-Alberta



    Quote Originally Posted by AgnusDei View Post
    Happiness is genetic is the sense that you're more likely to end up unhappy/depressed if you always have low levels of Serotonin .
    Number of receptors for Serotonin in brain cells are important too, and are genetic. Too few receptors, or broken receptors, and even high level of serotonin won't help.
    Also Neuronal Network Architecture is genetic, the main part. Even the new born kids love to be touched and interacted with, too young to be taught this.

  15. #15
    Regular Member Achievements:
    1000 Experience PointsVeteran
    AgnusDei's Avatar
    Join Date
    26-06-14
    Age
    33
    Posts
    60
    Points
    2,620
    Level
    14
    Points: 2,620, Level: 14
    Level completed: 57%, Points required for next Level: 130
    Overall activity: 0%

    Y-DNA haplogroup
    E-M84
    MtDNA haplogroup
    L1b1a

    Ethnic group
    Algerian
    Country: Algeria



    Quote Originally Posted by LeBrok View Post
    Number of receptors for Serotonin in brain cells are important too, and are genetic. Too few receptors, or broken receptors, and even high level of serotonin won't help.
    Also Neuronal Network Architecture is genetic, the main part. Even the new born kids love to be touched and interacted with, too young to be taught this.
    I know that depression can be genetic since it runs in the family !

Tags for this Thread

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •