Catholic Positive Psychology – Notes: Humour

Humour is the most interesting part of the human brain. What was God thinking?

In humour there is the willingness to enjoy seeing the OTHER SIDE of things, the willingness to see fresh points of view, to see them and appreciate them without necessarily feeling the need to adopt them as one’s own.

Smiling often reflects a sense of humour and amusement

Humour includes flexibility in the way we can look at information, the humour of creativity, wit and the humour of insight. Humour means seeing things in a different way. Appreciating the value of differences.

Christ Among the Doctors by Albrecht Dürer, 1506

Joseph of Nazareth taught Jesus to be able to discern the value of differences rather than a fear of them. Joseph must have been a very good teacher. Not only did his young son excel in a battle of wits with the doctors at the Temple when he was only 12 (Luke 2:41–52) but also later on as an adult, when asked the trick question whether Jews should pay taxes to the Roman Emperor, Jesus wittily replied, in Matthew 22:15–22,

Give therefore to the emperor the things that are the emperor’s, and to God the things that are God’s.

The Tribute Money, by Titian (1516), depicts Jesus being shown the tribute penny.

There’s the humour of wisdom, the humour of balance and tolerance, the humour of plurality. The enjoyment of surprise, chance and variety. The good mood, the sound of laughter, good humour and good health.

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