1.6.1 Happiness

In the previous chapters, I’ve demonstrated that the infernal trio (Racing thoughts, self-esteem, and almightiness) is to be blamed for the loss of control of the maniac and for his disconnection from the world. I didn’t really elaborate on hallucinations or delusions because I think they are akin to racing thoughts in the sense that creation of image can be compared to creation of ideas. In any case, it is the fact that you believe in them that makes you crazy. That’s why self-esteem is primary in the reasoning. The infernal trio is regulated by the dominance “volume knob” which has, according to psychiatry, five perceptible values: underdominance (melancholia, severe depression), subdominance (light depression), normodominance (euthymia), dominance (hypomania), and overdominance (mania). This post will lay the emphasis on almightiness which I described a little bit too quickly in the previous post. In my opinion, almightiness is the strongest form of happiness which is reached only in overdominance. In this post I’m going to go in deep with this link and explain what happiness is.

Happiness has been defined in multiple ways in philosophy and in psychology. I have neither the talent nor the patience to put pen to paper to express all imaginable perspectives on happiness. I’ve carefully read a book from Christophe Andre, a famous French psychiatrist. What he wrote is a good summary of what have been said about happiness from almost all perspectives. However, there was a big dimension missing which is always derived from the same ethologic question. If something exists in a living individual, why on earth evolution has provided it? What’s the use of it from a natural selection perspective? Is it just there to make us… happy? If happiness exists, it must have a function in the natural selection. And I can tell you happiness exists because as far as I’m concerned if fluctuates from mild sadness to ecstatic heights, following the moods of my mood.

First of all, happiness to me is a feeling of a state rather than functionality like the self-esteem that support and protect the self. To me, it is an extremely synthetic signal which indicates that the individual fits for his social, natural, affective, sexual or financial environment. As it is underlined by Christophe Andre, some people are more capable of happiness than the other (innate capacity) however it is reassuring to see that it can also be built through action (acquired happiness). This demonstrates the idea that this synthetic parameter can combine DNA and experience (innate/acquired). This reward is sometime transient sometime everlasting. It really depends on individuals. What makes one happy is a vast question which is address scantly in the internet. Why there is happiness does not seems to be as popular. So let’s try to sort this out.

So why did Nature invent happiness? Just for fun? I don’t think so. All complex systems need simple indicator to manage themselves. For example in the corporate world, there is a trend toward measurement of performance through simple indicator. These are called KPIs (Key performance indicators). You need an army of post graduates to come up with simple addition or multiplication. KPIs are necessary. Without them, companies cannot make the best decisions on their internal process and also in term of strategy vis-à-vis the environment. Happiness is the individual KPI. It is the measure of your capacity to maintain a good relationship with your inner self and your environment. Thus it is for me the most reliable indicator of dominance. Again, I want to distinguish it from the self-esteem, which may be part of the indicator mix. You can imagine someone who’s absolutely persuaded that what he does is great. If this always leads him into troubles, there’s no big happiness gain.

So you thought that happiness was an innocent feeling that Nature in its great kindness granted us? Absolutely not. Happiness is a reward of you current adaptation vis-à-vis the environment, the milieu so to speak. A hidden feeling of power is lurking behind it. In Euthymia, it indicates that you’re fit. You like life and prevail on all obstacles which are in your ways. Overdominance turns it into an almighty feeling. During a manic episode, the dominance “volume knob” forces happiness to reach the dangerous almightiness level. There is absolutely no change in the milieu that justifies such a happiness feeling change. This demonstrates that we are talking about an endogenous variable the malfunction of which impacts all functions of the individuals. The dominance volume knob is the underlying control that regulates not only happiness (“almightiness”) but also motor functioning (“agitated state”), self-esteem (“inflated self-esteem”), sexuality (“hypersexuality”) and thought (“racing thoughts”). Happiness is the dominance KPI, which enable to make the best decision to increase our “might”. But it has another more interesting purpose, which will be disclosed exclusively in this blog in the next post. Stay connected!

William sheller / un homme heureux (French singer)
Quel que soit le temps que ça prenne
Quel que soit l’enjeu
Je veux être un homme heureux

(Whatever time it takes,
whatever the stake is,
I want to be a happy man)

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