Einstein And Fight Club’s Theory On Happiness

Einstein And Fight Club’s Theory On Happiness

In this week’s Success Newsletter, I would like to reveal the message that Albert Einstein and The Fight Club have for happiness – and it is the same message!

First a quick update:

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Now, let’s talk about the theory of happiness.

What could one of the most famous, iconic, influential and universally admired persons in human history have in common with a cult movie about two men who create a new “fight club” where young men come to relieve their frustrations by beating each other to a pulp?

They both offer the same message about happiness.

It was October 1922, and Albert Einstein had just received news that he had won the 1921 Nobel Prize in physics.

“The news of the Nobel Prize winner’s arrival in Japan spread quickly, and when he arrived he found himself being welcomed by thousands of people flocking to see him.

“He was impressed but also a little embarrassed by the publicity he received and while he was staying at the Imperial Hotel in Tokyo he tried to record his thoughts and feelings on paper. When a messenger came to his room to give him something, Einstein did not have a tip available, and he decided to make the most of his new exalted status and give the messenger two of his writings. When he gave him the articles he told the messenger to keep them, as their future value may be much higher than a standard tip.” https://winners-auctions.com/en/content/professor-albert-einstein-regarding-fitting-way-life-imperial-hotel-tokyo-japan-1922

What did Einstein write?

On a piece of Tokyo’s Imperial Hotel stationery, Einstein wrote in German his theory of happiness:

“A calm and modest life brings more happiness than the pursuit of success combined with constant restlessness.”

On a second sheet, he wrote another message: “Where there’s a will, there’s a way.”

On October 24, 2017, at an auction, Einstein’s note on happiness sold to an anonymous bidder for $1.56 million. The second note sold for $240,000.

Is Albert Einstein’s theory on happiness not so obvious?

Perhaps if it were, there would be many more happy people.

The 1996, film The Fight Club based on the novel by Chuck Palahniuk delivered the same theory on happiness but from the perspective of the unhappy, angry and unfulfilled man who is pursuing “success.”

In the film, Fight Club, Edward Norton plays the “Narrator” a depressed young man full of angst, suffering from insomnia, feeling alienated from the world, exhausted from being a cog in big business, and living an empty life – “disgusted with the empty consumer culture of his generation.”

Norton’s character meets Tyler Durden played by Brad Pitt and gets in on the ground floor of Fight Club, “a secret society of men who meet in order to find freedom and self-realization through beating one another into pulp.” However, Durden has a master plan that is much greater than daily night fights – “It’s only after we’ve lost everything that we’re free to do anything.”

Einstein’s theory on happiness, 1922
Content: Stilles bescheidenes Leben gibt mehr Glueck als erfolgreiches Streben, verbunden mit bestaendiger Unruhe.
Translation: A calm and modest life brings more happiness than the pursuit of success combined with constant restlessness.

In one scene inside the actual fight club, Durden exposes the way people have been brainwashed into becoming obsessive consumers – slaves:

“Man, I see in fight club the strongest and smartest men who’ve ever lived. I see all this potential, and I see it squandering. God damn it, an entire generation pumping gas, waiting tables; slaves with white collars. Advertising has us chasing cars and clothes, working jobs we hate so we can buy shit we don’t need. We’re the middle children of history, men. No purpose or place. We have no Great War. No Great Depression. Our Great War’s a spiritual war … our Great Depression is our lives. We’ve all been raised on television to believe that one day we’d all be millionaires, and movie gods, and rock stars. But we won’t. And we’re slowly learning that fact. And we’re very, very pissed off.”
– Tyler Durden, “Fight Club”

And so, we do a full circle returning to Albert Einstein’s simple theory and message on happiness: seek calmness in your life, beware of becoming obsessed with always wanting more; beware of thinking that happiness exists outside of you based on things you amass or titles you hang on your wall or something else which may or may not be tangible and which will simply only result in and perpetuate that unsatisfying, never to be appeased or satisfied restlessness!

Happiness comes from within you, not from anything outside of you!

“The things you own end up owning you.”
Tyler Durden, “Fight Club

In case you are wondering, Einstein was already famous while alive and was an actual millionaire, and yet he knew that wasn’t the equation for happiness.

If you need personal help to be release the things within you that have been blocking your happiness – book a one-on-one session with me.

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I wish you the best and remind you “Believe in yourself -You deserve the best!”

Patrick Wanis Ph.D.
Celebrity Life Coach, Human Behavior & Relationship Expert & SRTT Therapist

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