The Pursuit of Happiness

One more clip from Wednesday’s Report. Stephen interviewed Daniel Gilbert, author of Stumbling on Happiness. (Hat tip to a comment at the homeschooling blog As Cozy as Spring for pointing out the interesting take on children and happiness.) But watch, too, for the interesting point at the very end of the interview on the question of whether God or religion makes people happy. I sense a bit of a character break here. We definitely see “Stephen” early in the interview with the questions about money and happiness. At the end, I’m not so sure. And once again, this is what I love about watching the Report. It always makes me think.

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4 Comments

  1. I watched that, and when the guy said that children make you more unhappy, Stephen – I think the real one – said that it’s not the same kind of happiness that stuff gives you, that it’s more sublime.

    My opinion on the guy (thanks for asking, by the way) is that he thinks he can measure happiness and he’s just wrong. You can’t. And happiness is different than joy, anyway. What children give you, more than anything else, is JOY. And there is joy to be found even in our sufferings, as any Catholic worth his salt can tell you.

  2. We caught a good glimpse of the real Stepehen in this interview, as one of 11 children, and the father of three young kids himself, Stephen no-doubt knows what he is talking about when he speaks of the sublime joy of family.

  3. Yeah, I was silently cheering Stephen on when he defended happiness with children. Before I had kids, I would have been all on Mr. Gilbert’s side about how kids detract from happiness. However, there is a magical, surreal change that happens the moment my children were born. It is surreal, and completely sublime (nearly perfect word to describe it, Stephen!) happiness to enjoy the delights of the innocence of childhood with your own children. The words joy and happiness do not completely encompass the feelings a parent encounters as they share a moment of giggles or glimse their angelic child asleep after “battling sleep” for three hours. This happiness is beyond priceless.

  4. It’s often a magic moment when real-Stephen emerges in an interview. This was definitely one of those!


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