Unhappiness Is a Palate-Cleanser
Happiness, in one form or another, seems to be a common goal that most of us would like to attain. We often behave as though we might find a route to contentment—comfort, satiety, warmth, or some other reward—and be happy all the time if we could just make the right choices. But pleasure is often fleeting, even from the most appealing experiences, giving rise to ennui and sparking the drive for something new and sensational.
As a neuroscientist, I can’t help wondering whether the transience of our satisfaction may not in fact be inescapable and instead may reveal an inevitable aspect of the way the brain works, the understanding of which might provide a clue to how to contend with it.