Don’t Let the Pursuit of Experiences Turn Into a Status Game

A strong case can be made for prioritising ‘experientialism’ over materialism; that is, looking for contentment in experiences, rather than material things. Psychological research shows that pursuing experiences over things makes us happier. Materialism has been linked to personality disorders such as narcissism, social anxiety and generally being dissatisfied with life. Taking some time out to travel might…

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Are Human Beings Driven by a ‘Will to Novelty’?

Philosophers and psychologists throughout history have tried to define and elucidate the human species by referring to certain basic drives that we all have. One that I would like to suggest, which I believe reflects the trajectory of humanity, is the will to novelty – the desire to seek out what is new and innovative.…

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The Value of Dark Humour

Not everyone likes dark humour. That’s pretty clear. While someone may be able to laugh at a joke about a horrific and tragic event, someone else may find the topic far too sensitive to be used in that way. But this raises an important question: are some subjects too sacred for comedy? A lot of…

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How to Develop a Stable Sense of Self-Worth

A group of American Buddhist teachers once met with the Dalai Lama during a conference, and one teacher, Sharon Salzberg, brought up the problem of unworthiness: “What do you think about self-hatred?” I asked when it was my turn to bring up an issue for discussion. I was eager to get directly to the suffering I…

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Why Habit Change Requires the Wisdom of Asking Questions

We all have habits that we would like to change. Of course, there are some things we do habitually that we are not even aware negatively affect us; and, conversely, there are habits we could pick up that we do not realise could drastically improve our lives. Nonetheless, we all have thoughts of “I need…

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