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The Happiness Hypothesis: Finding Modern Truth in Ancient Wisdom Paperback – December 1, 2006

4.6 out of 5 stars 810 ratings

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"I really can't recommend this book enough. It's one of the best and most insightful books I've ever read."―Joe Rogan

"[T]he psychologist Jonathan Haidt shows in his wonderfully smart and readable The Happiness Hypothesis: Finding Modern Truth in Ancient Wisdom [that] modern science and history have a lot to say to each other."
Darrin McMahon, The Washington Post

"[An] inspiring nuanced study."
People

"[A] marvelous book.... I don't think I've ever read a book that laid out the contemporary understanding of the human condition with such simple clarity and sense."
Guardian, (UK)

"This unusual book sets itself apart from the self-help category with its extensive scientific references, and intelligent, neutral prose, while the author's illuminating illustration of how the human mind works is both educational and refreshing."
Sunday Times (London)

"With singular gusto, Haidt measures ten 'Great Ideas' against past/present research in psychology and science. LJ's verdict: Dr. Phil et al. don't have diddly on the old-school sages. No man is an island, indeed, and no modern reader should be without this carefully considered demystification of life."
Library Journal, Best Books 2006

"This is a delightful book.... Haidt's writing embraces spiritual and mystical viewpoints while retaining scientific and rational coherence."
Nature

"A disarming, original book, reassuring to those more conversant with worriment than merriment.... Smart and serious without pomposity."
Seattle Times

"Haidt's remedy for the modern glut of frivolous self-help literature is to review and revise the classics, examining the ideas of thinkers like Plato, Buddha and Jesus in light of modern research into human behavior. Along the way, Haidt, a social psychologist, provides practical advice for parenting, romance, work and coping with the political and cultural divisions currently preoccupying the country."
Psychology Today

The Happiness Hypothesis is a wonderful and nuanced book that provides deep insight into the some of the most important questions in life--Why are we here? What kind of life should we lead? What paths lead to happiness? From the ancient philosophers to cutting edge scientists, Haidt weaves a tapestry of the best and the brightest. His highly original work on elevation and awe--two long-neglected emotions--adds a new weave to that tapestry. A truly inspiring book."
David M. Buss, author of The Evolution of Desire: Strategies of Human Mating

About the Author

Jonathan Haidt is the Thomas Cooley Professor of Ethical Leadership at New York University's Stern School of Business. He is a social psychologist whose research examines morality and the moral emotions. He is the author of The Righteous Mind: Why Good People are Divided by Politics and Religion, and the coauthor of The Coddling of the American Mind: How Good Intentions and Bad Ideas are Setting Up a Generation for Failure.

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4.6 out of 5 stars
4.6 out of 5
810 customer ratings
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Reviewed in the United States on June 28, 2016
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Reviewed in the United States on January 22, 2017
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Wes O'Brien
5.0 out of 5 stars Insightful and inspiring
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on April 18, 2017
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Nishchay Munshi
5.0 out of 5 stars Review - Paperback Version
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Helen B.
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on November 10, 2014
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Jason c
5.0 out of 5 stars brilliantly clever and insightful
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on March 20, 2016
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Mrs Bartholomew
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on February 20, 2016
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PDamazon
5.0 out of 5 stars Well worth reading
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on May 26, 2013
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Brett Jarvis
5.0 out of 5 stars Worth the read
Reviewed in Canada on September 11, 2018
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Felipe C. S. Moitta
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing book. My notes:
Reviewed in Brazil on February 18, 2019
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Dr. Glockenspiel
4.0 out of 5 stars Haidt établit un dialogue critique entre les sagesses anciennes et ...
Reviewed in Canada on July 18, 2018
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cesar carneiro penna
5.0 out of 5 stars Completo, objetivo e intrigante
Reviewed in Brazil on July 7, 2015
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AC
5.0 out of 5 stars I bought this book for fun! And so much of it rings true for me! It only confirmed what I already know!
Reviewed in Canada on February 27, 2018
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cesc
5.0 out of 5 stars best description of human psicology
Reviewed in Spain on May 28, 2019
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RAS
5.0 out of 5 stars Le bonheur selon les Anciens et les Nouveaux
Reviewed in France on March 13, 2018
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Harsha
5.0 out of 5 stars levitation
Reviewed in India on April 4, 2019
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Jagadish
3.0 out of 5 stars Liked the Shakespeare quote in the book
Reviewed in India on March 29, 2018
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