What Is Humor?

Volume 3, Issue 50

Like life itself, and consciousness, love, oneness, even Flow state, and so many other things we take for granted just because of long familiarity, have you ever stopped to wonder what is this weird sound-and-breath spasm thing we do sometimes? Laughing, I mean. What is that?

Feelings are one of the best clues to meaning. The meaning of any moment is most easily extracted from our feelings at that moment and in retrospect. Moreso than logical analytics alone.

(Side Note: The mind/body/spirit is in Flow state when all the detector and effector functionality is optimized together, feelings and intuition and analytics and perceptions and actions are not abstracted from one another, and inside/outside subject and object are one flowing process. A Oneness Singularity.)

What are the feelings associated with this bizarre phenomenon we take for granted? Laughing, that is.

We are pleased when we laugh, it’s fun, and it is an expression of at least momentary happiness, even if we do it ruefully during a negative feeling context.

Sometimes laughter is joy expressing itself bubbly and uncontainable, as when a child takes off on his first flight on a sled.

Humor is the intentional or unintentional causation of laughter. Of course the standup learns that sometimes it is the intention to create laughter without the fact of it.

Once we discovered that we liked this involuntary spasm (as we like orgasm, another preferred spasm, whereas we dislike and fear most spasms we experience) we began to purposely try to evoke it as much as possible under whatever circumstances befall us.

Laughter and orgasm may be related in ways we don’t know yet.

My dry cleaner is a comedian. Everything he says is intended to make you laugh. At least it makes him laugh, which is definitely a healthy thing. Good spasms are healthy spasms.

In the case of humor, sometimes our laughter expresses relief. The butt of the joke is being ridiculed, and since we are not the one getting the ridicule, we are relieved. Yet ridiculousness, related to ridicule, appears to be at the center of all humor.

When I have fallen from Observer state, I often get back up by realizing that if I can’t see the humor in the situation, I have clearly lost perspective. “These are the jokes,” I remind myself.

Enjoy this moment. And now this one.

Be prepared to laugh.

If you’re already smiling, you’re already prepared.

Wishing you laugh-filled days and nights,


PS – Top copywriter and genius Ed Ney of Young & Rubicam fame has moved on to the next classroom. Read his speeches and yours will be even better than they’ve been. Like Erwin Ephron, Ed used short pithy memorable sentences packed with meaning and impact, condensed intelligence and insight. Much to unpack. Rhythmic to the mind. Ed had been a reader of this blog. Treasured like all of you. So long, Ed, see ya. Somewhere somewhen down the long and winding.

Watch for my new book, You Are the Universe. Imagine That, coming in February.

Follow my regular blog contribution at Jack Myers Media Network: In Terms of ROI. It is in the free section of the website at  Bill Harvey at MediaBizBloggers.com.

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