“What’s So Funny About Peace Love & Understanding”: The Connection Between Comedy and Spiritual Growth

By Debra LeClair Psy.D.

What gets chosen for scientific study and what gets expressed through the arts both reflect what at least some human beings are thinking about more deeply. What takes off and goes viral from there shows what is resonating for many and where the shift in perception of how we fit into the Universe is ripe for a transformation.

Comedy is one such expression. What it has to say to us, actually speaks to our soul because something becomes funny when it rings as “so true”. Similarly, the humor that not only brings the most laughs but also stays with us is that which reflects the day to day of the typical person. Think about it, what makes George Carlin so seminal, Louis CK so relatable or Seinfeld, the show about nothing and Modern Family, the show about everything, two of the most successful on television? It’s the ridiculousness that they all expose about our constantly preoccupied minds that make us recognize ourselves and laugh. Having something pointed out through comedy gives us a chance to see it with greater clarity. It can give us grounding in self-awareness informed by compassion, which is the most fertile condition for learning and building both emotional and social intelligence.
If it makes us stop, even once to think about how we treat each other or how we treat ourselves, then this “fun and games” becomes a great teacher.

Want to see what I am talking about, watch a few clips below:



For more, check out the article, Wise Fools by Rod Meade Sperry in the November 2013 Shamabhala Sun