Emotionally Extreme Experiences, Not Just Positive or Negative Experiences, Are More Meaningful in Life
Intense experiences of both kinds, good and bad, are helping build meaning in life to the same degree, and are complementing each other, according to research.
If a person has mostly good experiences, or mostly bad ones, his life cycle, in a way, is still incomplete. To truly get the meaning of life, both negative and positive life experiences are required.
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... has always been viewing of the subject or object in isolation. In most fields of study, things are treated as separate from each other. Objects are dissected and analysed by breaking them down to atomic levels. For Example, the mind is treated as separate from the body.
This ‘Divide and Rule’ is visible in the research of emotional valence, where positive experiences are pitted against the negative experiences, with an inherent bias.
These new findings on the synergy of good and bad experiences in our lives go against our usual ways of ‘compartmentalized’ thinking and give us a glimpse of the integrated and dual nature of reality.
They also explains why we seek out unpleasant, or even dangerous experiences, like watching horror movies, going on thrilling rides which can be risky, or just being exhausted.
Suffering and sadness are necessary for a wholesome life, along with positive experiences.
While practicing being in the present can help us reduce anxiety and depression, we need the ‘counterbalance’ of the other extreme emotions to feel alive.
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