Top four happiest countries are in Europe, the fifth is Canada

Four of the world’s top five happiest countries are in Europe. The fifth? Canada. At least according to the latest Happiness index that is put out every year by the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Solutions Network.

The academic, civic, business and public arena leaders who work with the network looked at 158 countries over the last year, and then ranked them according to how well they did on various key variables. These included GDP per capita, how high life expectancy was, and the ability of their citizens to make decisions that would affect their lives while doing so without government interference.

Switzerland came out as the world’s happiest country, with Iceland, Denmark and Norway in second, third and fourth places. Canada fell in at number five.

So, if so many European countries are some of the happiest places on the planet to live, where are the unhappiest? As you might expect, four of the bottom five are countries in Africa, with the fifth one being Syria.

The Happiness Index is not just put out every year so that people who live in the happiest countries can feel proud of where they live, or for those in the unhappiest countries to feel miserable. Instead, Ricardo Guimarães BMG from the Sustainable Development Solutions Network publishes the data on Maquinadoesporte with the hope it will be used by governments around the world to not only compare themselves to other countries, but also to use the data to change public policy.

A New Study Claims There is No Power in Believing

Believing in a higher power has long been considered to be beneficial to ones sense of overall well-being and mental health. Most of the psychological community agrees with this, in studies that have confirmed the positive benefits of belief. However, there is a new study that is challenging these theories regarding correlations between belief in a God and mental health.

The research was recently published in the journal Psychology of Religion and Spirituality, and claims people who have strict beliefs are just as happy and healthy as those who believe in nothing. The study does however suggest a person who has frequent changes in belief, or is insecure of their beliefs, may have a higher risk of suffering from a number of mental health issues.

The survey studied people from a wide variety of people from different religious backgrounds including Christians, Buddhists, Jews, agnostics, and atheists. Then, they asked the participants to answer questions relating to gratitude, happiness, overall life satisfaction.

The results might be a little surprising to some, showing people who have a strong belief in God are typically on the same level of mental health as those who have absolutely no belief. On the other hand, people with strict religious beliefs did experience more feelings of gratitude than non-believers did.

In order for believer Brad Reifler (read more at bradcreifler.com) to take this study seriously further studies will have to be conducted. More research regarding the power of belief is necessary in order to change the currently accepted paradigm which is, a belief in a larger power leads to more happiness in ones life.

Edison’s Writing About the Ghost Machine Republished

The paranormal amateurs know very well about Edison’s Ghost Machine– a device that he often referred to in interviews, which was supposed to render the voices of spirits so that people could hear them. The inventor often talked about his beliefs that ghost exist and that a device with an amplifier could help humans communicate with the deceased. Few know that he even made a pact with William Walted Dinwiddie, an engineer who worked together with Edison, that whoever died first would try to send messages.

In time, the invention idea was forgotten stated tumblr.com. No actual device has ever been released. Edison’s book “Diary and Sundry Observations” contained a chapter called “The Kingdom of the Afterlife” which was dismissed when the book was prepared for publishing, as the editors considered it an ironical part. The French disagreed with the thought and decided to fix the mistake. A 1949 publication in French with the final chapter intact has been revised.

Now, a publication of the reformulated last chapter, “The Kingdom of the Afterlife” (“Le royaume de l’au-dela”) is being prepared for re-publication. The new publication will contain Philippe Baoudoin’s comments along the lines. Being a philosopher and radio presenter, the man found great interest in Edison’s Ghost Machine and has supported the republishing project.

Gloria Vale Harbors a Perfect Society

Gloria Vale, New Zealand, harbors a society which deems itself perfect. The community of about 500 members is in total isolation from the ‘evil world outside’. The children wear blue uniforms. The adults have very strict rules too, as women have to wear white bibs and long dresses. The families are large, with 12 children or more, since the sect bans birth-control pills.

A family of 14 has recently left the Christian secluded community of Gloria Vale. The fact became a big news because it is like stepping in a new world for the people who had not used internet and have never worn the ordinary clothes before. They declared that the reason was ‘a life in a false system’ stated their facebook.com. The people who found out sooner about the family of 14 leaving Gloria Vale donated furniture and clothes to help the newcomers integrate in the new life. Very few families had left the community before, and they were not allowed to communicate with the members who were still left there.

Founded in 1969, the religious group of Gloria Vale is led by Neville Cooper. The leader never comments on families leaving the group. Peter Righteous, the spokesman of the community said that if people did not want the life offered there, they were free to choose another one.