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Mohammad Mohammadipour

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Can Money Buy Happiness?

Maybe more cash does make people happier. Especially salient are analyses done by University of Pennsylvania economists Daniel Sacks, Betsey Stevenson, and Justin Wolfers. In their updated 2010 study, “Subjective Well-Being, Income, Economic Development and Growth,” the three compare subjective well-being survey data from 140 countries with those countries' income and economic growth rates. The researchers find that within individual countries richer people are happier than poorer; people in richer countries are happier than people in poorer countries; and over time increased economic growth leads to increased happiness. “These results together suggest that measured subjective well-being grows hand in hand with material living standards,” they conclude..

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  • Feb 16 2013: As a matter of fact, in the current society money does buy happiness. Every minute.

    Whoever says the contrary shall cut down his entire in/out flows of money from his life starting from tomorrow, just to see how much his happiness really depends on that. Oh, you should obviously not lean against anything you purchased with money in the past, of course. That would be cheating: instead of relying on a purchase made today, you rely on a purchase made in the past. Nor lean against the money or possession of other people, naturally.

    Don't want to call it money? Call it possession, acquisition, ownership.

    Of course there are psychological and spiritual aspects to be considered too, since humans with a *certain* level of acquired happiness can start living on a different level of existence. But why does this topic always go so very far away from the real human being who is speaking? It looks like it's so damn easy to forget who we are and what we are doing in our every single day.

    And before pointing out that "what you buy is not true happiness but basilar needs", note that:
    - unsatisfied basilar needs = TRUE unhappiness, I guarantee you by experience.
    - you're just stating that *for you* those basilar needs are no more enough to feel happy. I know people who would be filled with immense joy for several days in your place.

    Naive? Yes. But sometimes one has to be like that, when idealization goes so far away from reality.

    Of course if you happen to have just too much money for your own real need of happiness, then the statement "money doesn't buy happiness" is magically true. But now you should know what to do with your surplus: give it away. Unless you're a penny pincher! ;-)

    >> This post is an intellectual provocation, and should be taken as such. No one really expects human beings from being so pure to really become consistent to this simple truth. And I purposely neglected other important aspects involved, many of which already on this page.
    • Feb 17 2013: However, many people who barely have the means to meet their basic needs happen to be extremely happy. It's a choice, being hungry to the point of pain is uncomfortable, scary, etc. However, the choice remains it's just harder to make. Once basic needs (not wants) are met happiness becomes an easier choice if you want it too.
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      Feb 17 2013: Dear Robert,
      I say that money does not buy happiness, and you suggest that a person who believes this "cut down his entire in/out flows of money from his life starting from tomorrow, just to see how much his happiness really depends on that."

      I planned well for retirement, so I would be comfortable, and because of our economic situation, I am now at poverty level. My money "in/out flow" was cut down considerabley because of loss of investments. I'm still very happy/content. I was a happy/content person before the financial challenge, I am a happy/content person in the present moment, and will be a happy/content person in the future because I KNOW it is a choice.

      You say..."It looks like it's so damn easy to forget who we are and what we are doing in our every single day."

      I suggest that if we forget who we are and what we are doing in our every single day, then we can indeed get lost in the idea that money buys happiness. I also suggest that when we KNOW who and what we are, we make choices regarding whether we want to be happy/content in each and every day.

      You say your comment is an "intellectual provocation", even though you present it "As a matter of fact".
      Who would this "matter of fact...intellectual provocation" be for my friend? Yourself?
      • Feb 17 2013: Dear Mrs. Steen,
        I'm absolutely supportive for your own situation and sharing the understanding of the point of view you're proposing. Please, do not be deceived by the sour and pinch tone I've used on purpose, as I said it was intended as a provocation aiming to hit a particular aspect of the topic.

        Reading your kind reply, I would say that you're not so far away from my real (unsaid) point of view, and I like that. At the same time, I recognize that I've failed to make you see through this particular keyhole.

        I doesn't really matter anyway.
        My best wishes for your days to come

        Robert :)
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          Feb 17 2013: Dear Robert,
          I do not feel "deceived" at all, and I've peeked through many "keyholes" of understanding during my life adventure:>)

          How about sharing your "real (unsaid) point of view"? It DOES matter Robert....to me anyway....because I enjoy discussing what is "real", and I am aware that our perception of "real" may be different for each and every one of us at any given time:>)
      • Feb 25 2013: Hi Colleen Steen,I do like to see your sincere comments here.A very good conversation between you and Robert here.Thanks:)
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          Feb 25 2013: Thank you Edulover:>) Respectful comments, from which we can all learn, are GREAT.....in my humble perception:>)

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