Children's Laughter the Apex of Joy
The sound of children laughing delights listeners more than any other noise, a New Zealand study has found. Psychologist Aaron Jarden says it is because laughter is associated with well-being.
What's the Latest Development?
In a recent study out of New Zealand, people were asked which sounds they most closely associate with joy. At the top of the list was the sound of children laughing, followed by sounds of nature and animals. "I think that is purely an evolutionary mechanism in the sense that laughter is a sign that things are going well," says psychologist Aaron Jarden. He said picturing a baby evoked a feeling of well-being but adding the sound of laughter made it more potent. At the bottom of the list were armpit farts, V-8 engines and firecrackers.
What's the Big Idea?
How does the noise in our environment affect our well-being? The results of recent research indicate that our sense of joy plummets when we are surrounded by a dull hum or loud bursts of sound. "Jarden, the lead investigator in New Zealand for an international wellbeing survey, said regularly experiencing joy was a vital component in the wellbeing spectrum, along with positive emotion, engagement and meaning in life, positive relationships and accomplishment. 'Those are the five key areas, if you are topping those, and doing well in those, you will have wellbeing.'"
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We take fewer mental pictures per second.
- Recent memories run in our brains like sped-up old movies.
- In childhood, we capture images in our memory much more quickly.
- The complexities of grownup neural pathways are no match for the direct routes of young brains.
In the face of seemingly unstoppable gun violence, Americans could stand to gain by looking to the Swiss.
- According to a recent study, the U.S. had the second highest number of gun-related deaths in 2016 after Brazil.
- Like the U.S., Switzerland has a high rate of gun ownership. However, it has a considerably lower rate of deaths from gun violence.
- Though pro-gun advocates point to Switzerland as an example of how gun ownership doesn't have to correlate with mass shootings, Switzerland has very different regulations, practices, and policies related to guns than America.
It's one of the most consistent patterns in the unviverse. What causes it?
- Spinning discs are everywhere – just look at our solar system, the rings of Saturn, and all the spiral galaxies in the universe.
- Spinning discs are the result of two things: The force of gravity and a phenomenon in physics called the conservation of angular momentum.
- Gravity brings matter together; the closer the matter gets, the more it accelerates – much like an ice skater who spins faster and faster the closer their arms get to their body. Then, this spinning cloud collapses due to up and down and diagonal collisions that cancel each other out until the only motion they have in common is the spin – and voila: A flat disc.
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