The Problem With Happiness Studies

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Earlier this week, the scientific journal known as “the opinions section of the New York Times,” ran a study on the happiness of various religious and political groups.

In studying women who report above-average satisfaction, commitment, closeness and stability in their relationships, we find that women at both ends of the ideological spectrum enjoy comparatively high-quality marriages, compared with women in the religious and ideological middle, as well as secular women who lean right culturally.

Daily Wire columnist Matt Walsh (who may get angry at me for quoting him) wrote “That’s not surprising.” “ It’s almost like God knew what he was talking about when he described what marriage should be like,” wrote BlazeTV host Allie Beth Stuckey in an argument so circular I’m getting dizzy reading it. “When marriage is more than a social contract — when it’s a covenant and a sacrament between two people who welcome in God’s love and live faithfully, it helps bring heaven to earth,” wrote pro-life activist Lila Rose.

Before I continue I would like to say, if you’re a religious conservative housewife and that makes you happy, that’s fine. This article is not meant to attack you. But when I read things like “ 6 month prison terms for divorces,” I feel like I need to talk about this.

It should be noted, I’m also not attacking the studies directly. I couldn’t find a large issue with it (although I didn’t look very hard), I’m more attacking the idea of happiness studies in general. If a study came out tomorrow that said being an atheist libertarian made people the happiest, I’d say the same exact things.

I think I should start off with both the selfishness and ridiculousness of basing your life off of what makes others happy (the only reason to read these studies). Happiness is not an end-all in life, instead, it is simply an expression you did something you enjoyed. If we followed this logic to any sort of extreme (which is really the only reason to have a logical principle, so this is not a strawman like some may claim) we could justify even the most destructive forms of hedonism. And yes, the right can be hedonistic. Hedonism (which is not a bad thing unless the behavior is harming others, for the record) is the entire basis of the free market. Unless you want to argue you didn’t get pleasure from everything you’ve bought, in which case you’re just bad with money.

To quote Shane Killian “If the only thing that matters is maximum happiness for all, why not just hand out free heroin?”

Actually, using Religion to make you happy may not be that far off. It has been found that the effects on Religion on the brain are not different than the effects of drugs.

This also ignores the complete arrogance of saying you know what can cause happiness. Here’s a question, is pain always a negative? If yes, then explain why 36% of Americans enjoy at least some form of BDSM. Do they just not matter?

The studies even prove this. Don’t believe me? Just read the study:

Fully 73 percent of wives who hold conservative gender values and attend religious services regularly with their husbands have high-quality marriages.

73%? That’s not 100%. It’s as if happiness is relative to the individual and not something that can be found absolutely by everyone.

To put it simply, the idea you can just find happiness through what you read in a study is nonsense. Only you can truly figure out what makes you happy, and that may even sometimes take a while, go against what you’re doing, or be different from what makes everyone else happy. That’s okay. An individualism society allows you to do whatever you want as long as you don’t harm anyone else. If you simply think of it like that, people citing this study and nothing more than authoritarians trying to push an agenda.

Twitter: @EphromJosine1

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Writer On Both History And Politics; Peaceful Globalist; Follow My Twitter: @EphromJosine1

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