Kama muta: A new term for that warm, fuzzy feeling we all get

Social media posts that evoke strong kama muta often go viral – for example, cute kittens, puppies and special animal friendships.

Photo by Ramiz Dedaković on Unsplash

Some emotions you seem to recognise the moment you feel them – you know when you're angry, surprised, embarrassed or jealous.

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Could new study on cow communication lead to more humane farming?

Audio recordings reveal cows have unique voices and share emotions with each other.

Image source: Bildagentur Zoonar GmbH/Shutterstock
  • New audio recordings of cows reveal rich communication and unique individual voices.
  • Cows do more than vocalize to their calves — they share emotions with each other.
  • A better understanding of what cows are saying and feeling can help in the formulation of humane cattle-care standards.
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The path to less stress? Strategic pessimism.

The key to happiness is being less optimistic and accepting a certain amount of unhappiness.

  • The centuries old philosophy of Stoicism may hold the key to a kind of happiness that is more grounded in reality.
  • The two main ideas of stoic happiness are that problems are caused by your reactions to events not the events themselves, and the only things you can control are your thoughts and your actions.
  • Choosing strategic pessimism over optimism and positive thinking is one way to avoid "unnecessary disturbance and anxiety."
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The worst time of middle age? When you’re 47.

Researcher discovers a universal slump in life satisfaction.

Image source: National Bureau Of Economic Research, ©2020 David G. Blanchflower/Milan Ilic Photographer/Shutterstock/Big Think
  • In 132 countries, a clear U shape is seen in happiness in the late 40s.
  • The study controls for influencing factors in arriving at its conclusions.
  • Three possible reasons for a post-middle-age return to happiness are suggested.
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The psychology of magic: Where do we look for meaning in life?

The desperate search for a narrative opens the door to the wonders of magic.

  • By embracing a rational approach to life, society at large has stripped away meaning from psychologically important elements of life, including death.
  • A lack of meaning leads to discomfort, which results in a desperate search for narrative in things that feel transcendent and bigger than ourselves.
  • For some, the wonder of magic fills that void and provides the meaning and structure that has been lost.
  • Derren returns to the stage with his new live, one-man show, Showman. Check it out here.
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