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SwCA Episode 180: Would you rather be a pig happy or Socrates unhappy?

  • Broadcast in Business
Courtney Elizabeth Anderson

Courtney Elizabeth Anderson


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SHOW NOTES: In our JOYFUL ART OF BUSINESS™ series we explore how to combine the positive benefits of our professional endeavors (“business”) with the overall positive emotional return on our efforts (“joy”). The act of engaging in professional endeavors, in any capacity (i.e., as an employee, employer, entrepreneur, contractor, volunteer, paid, full time, part time, intermittently, etc.) is an expression of our ideas and creative talents (“art”). All of this is in furtherance of our mission to surpass our goals! Our episode today is, “Would you rather be a pig happy or Socrates unhappy?” (i.e., is ignorance bliss?) 

Where did the show topic come from?

From a book written by John Stuart Mill. The book is titled, “Utilitarianism” and was first published in 1861. 

From Frostburg University, “Is the high-strung and hardworking intellectual superior to the relaxed and benevolent airhead? Considering that high culture requires so much attention and effort, and that it does not seem to pay off too well in terms of sociability and contentment, is it really worth the price it exacts?  This is the question that John Stuart Mill tries to answer in the second chapter of his book Utilitarianism (first published in 1861). In that chapter Mill offers the famous judgment (in favor of the New Yorkers, as it were) that "it is better to be a human being dissatisfied than a pig satisfied; better to be Socrates dissatisfied than a fool satisfied." Basically Mill contends that a highly cultured person is a happier person, a person who gets more pleasure out of life than an airhead--even if such a person experiences a great deal of frustration and dissatisfaction as a result of being educated and cultured.” (http: