1. Ecclesiastes 8:15 (King James version). Yes, really! What a humanistic statement! No wonder commentators have pointed out that Ecclesiastes is very different from the rest of the bible.

2. Russell, Bertrand. Quoted at (WQ), a reliable source maintained by Ethical Culture Leader Jone Johnson. Accessed March 4, 2008.

3. Roosevelt, Franklin D. First Inaugural Address. Saturday, March 4, 1933.

4. George Sand.

5. Ingersoll, Robert G., in the course of a discussion on The Limits of Toleration (1888). For the full text of this statement by the "Great Agnostic" of the 19th century, Accessed March 4,2008.

6. Helen Keller. Wisdom Quotes.

7. One method these researchers have used is The Experience-Sampling Method (ESM), in which participants keep a log in which they describe specific activities they were engaged in and accompanying moods on a detailed list provided by researchers. Tens of thousands of people have participated in such studies, which in turn served as the basis for numerous scientific studies.

8. Csikszentmihalyi, Mihaly. Finding Flow: The Psychology of Engagement with Everyday Life (New York: Basic Books, 1998), pp. 28-29. Other aspects of this discussion have been taken from pp. 23-34. See also "Flow vs. its opposite" ( .html) and "Outside Room 15" ( 2007/01/outside-room-15-chocolate-ice-cream-vs.html#links) for two brilliant blog excursions on flow. Both sites accessed April 28, 2008.

9. For example, Dweck, C.S., & Kamins, M.L. Person versus process, praise and criticism: Implications for contingent self-worth and coping, Developmental Psychology, 35(3) (1999), 835-847; and Dweck, C.S., & Kamins, M.L. Praise for intelligence can undermine children's motivation and performance, Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 75(1) (1998), 41. These and similar research results are described at http://greatergood Accessed April 28,2008.

10. Peterson, C., and Seligman, M., Character Strengths and Virtues, A Handbook and Classification (New York: Oxford University Press, 2004). This is the academic text. A list of the "twenty-four strengths" is at www, along with a brief summary of how the classification was developed and how it is used in research. Accessed May 4, 2008.

11. Park, N., Peterson, C., & Seligman, M.E.P., Strengths of character and well-being among youth. Unpublished manuscript, University of Rhode Island, 2005. Abstract accessed May 4,2008, from Abstracts/tabid/63/Default.aspx

12. "History of the [VIA] Classification and Survey." Accessed May 4, 2008, from Default.aspx

13. According to a research overview at 57/Default.aspx, "Much of the early research ... [on] the association between character strengths and life ... point[s] in particular to the strengths of love, hope, gratitude, curiosity, and zest as robust contributors." (This overview includes citations of scholarly literature). Site accessed May 4, 2008.

14. "A study with more than 4000 participants revealed that five key strengths—gratitude, optimism, zest, curiosity, and the ability to love and be loved—are more closely and consistently related to life satisfaction than the other strengths." Dean, Ben, PhD, "The Five Key Strengths" adapted from the Authentic Happiness Newsletter, 2(7), and posted at www 116/Default.aspx. Note that these lists of key strengths are overlapping, but not identical. Accessed May 4, 2008.

15. Csikszentmihalyi points out that, "The most positive experiences people report are usually those with friends. This is especially true for adolescents ..." (p. 81). He continues on pp. 85-88 to discuss how friendship has become an important part of modern family life, and how friendships within the family work differently from friendships outside the family.

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