Something occurred to me as I was reading some studies about the brain's response to the price of wine--or at least the perception of the price of wine. Whether it is tango or the taste of wine when we value the object of our desires, the pleasure goes up. But what happens when we truly value others. Doesn't it make sense that our pleasure in life will go up?
At the bottom of this post, I will introduce you to some remarkable results from a few psychological studies on the relationship to valuing wine to enjoying wine. Yet, all of them are missing a much larger spiritual lesson. The bottom line of these studies, which may not surprise you, is that when people believe that a particular wine is expensive, then the pleasure of drinking that wine increases too. But what does it all mean in application? Put $200 price tags on the wine you serve so your guests can have more pleasure?!
The spiritual lesson
What if we could start valuing those around us as well as the things in our lives we have without being "duped"? In fact, perhaps we are duping ourselves by not valuing others! Devaluing others is the beginning of abuse and many other problems in the world. The greatest of all thinkers of all time helped humanity learn how to better value those around them.
The brain does not need to be duped to truly value another soul.
Rather, when awakened to the value of others, we will find more pleasure in our interactions with others. But if value predicts enjoyment and higher pleasure, then the spiritual path is perhaps unlike what many people believe. The Path of Pleasure is a spiritual path, not the path of sin. The freedom of expression is very similar the freedom of expression through words: Kind words that value others heal. Kind valuation of the person with whom you are dancing is also healthy, not some sort of sin or addiction. My motto is: Social dancing--not a kind of dancing , but kind dancing.
Even if you are an atheist, when you dance tango, you are on a heavenly path. Dancing tango is like finding yourself on a nice little side-street in heaven, don't you think? It's not the golden streets, but the wooden paths of heaven that we seek. Have you not touched the divine? Have you ever found that person you are dancing with is in that moment the only person in the universe? A soul with immeasurable worth? That is the Path of Pleasure, not the Path of Addiction or Sin--as many say of tango. It is up to you, not your partner to take the first step on this Path to Pleasure. Hold your partner's hand and lead the way.
Photo/art credit: www.FabianPerez.com
Studies on the Path of Pleasure (via wine):
Stanford News: http://news.stanford.edu/news/2008/january16/wine-011608.html
Regarding marketing's ability to change neural signals of pleasure: http://www.pnas.org/content/105/3/1050
Marketing psychology: http://www.quicksprout.com/the-complete-guide-to-understand-customer-psychology-chapter-6/
More on marketing by "Skeptics": http://skeptics.stackexchange.com/questions/2117/are-different-prices-in-wines-justified-by-taste
BBC Report on Wine's Test NOT related to its price: http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-13072745