A Harvard University study demonstrated that an individual person’s happiness is actually an outcome of group actions and largely depends on whether a person’s friends are happy or not.
The study also found that a person’s joy will propagate to three degrees of separation like ripples on the surface of the water.
Moreover, it was found that the power of happiness is subject to time and space: the closer in proximity one is to the happy person, the higher the chance that he or she will be influenced by the other person’s happiness.
By living next door to a joyful person, one’s rate of becoming happy will increase by 34 percent
People who have deep social ties within a large circle of friends are normally happier than those who have none. Furthermore, happiness can take at least one year to spread!
This study demonstrated that messages which are beautiful, honest, kind and tolerant spread to people and the surroundings exert positive energy just like happiness does.
The ancient people long ago realized the power of virtue. They, therefore, developed idioms such as “acquire imperceptibly” and the “influence of surroundings” which have been passed down for thousands of years.
They conducted themselves this way as they passed down a rich cultural heritage.
This story of “Mencius’ Mother Moving Three Times,” ( 孟子 372 – 289 BC) was a Chinese philosopher in Warring and States period who was arguably the most famous Confucian after Confucius himself.) it illustrates a truth; Realizing that the environment is far more important and powerful in influencing a child than preaching and making examples, she didn’t stop moving until they found the Academic Center of Zou City.
She saw that the area was full of scholars and that their noble bearing, calm manners, and graceful behavior influenced the residents imperceptibly, especially children. The children would gather underneath big trees imitating the scholars bowing to each other.
She was finally satisfied and settled down with her family in that area. This story tells us how important the environment is.
Translated from: http://www.zhengjian.org/zj/articles/2008/12/15/56600.html