The Aim of Existence: Cultivating Happiness

On a recent trip to Israel, I brought a book to read on the airplane. Because this was a very lengthy flight, I took a book that seemed to promise an easy, light, informative read. My wife, Shirona, had recommended a book, and its title caught my attention. Simply titled Happier, this book, by Israeli psychologist Dr. Tal Ben-Shahar, is based on a course that he teaches at Harvard, which is now the University’s most popular class, regularly drawing over 850 students. The subject of the class is Positive Psychology, a branch of psychology that began in the 1990s and focuses on understanding and encouraging positive human characteristics such as optimism, love, courage, creativity, integrity, and ...

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