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The Good LifeUnifying the Philosophy and Psychology of Well-Being$
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Michael Bishop

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780199923113

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: December 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199923113.001.0001

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Positive Causal Networks and the Network Theory of Well-Being

Positive Causal Networks and the Network Theory of Well-Being

(p.35) Chapter 3 Positive Causal Networks and the Network Theory of Well-Being
The Good Life

Michael A Bishop

Oxford University Press

This chapter presents a provisional account of Positive Causal Networks (PCNs). There exist networks of causally interrelated feelings, emotions, attitudes, traits, and accomplishments. Such a causal network is positive if it consists of a relatively high number of valued states and states with a positive hedonic tone. PCNs are homeostatic systems, like living organisms or running engines. Changes strengthen the system when they make it more robust—tougher, more durable. Changes weaken it when they make it less robust—more delicate, less durable. The causal driversof a PCN are those states that tend to establish, maintain, or strengthen it. A state or set of states is a PCN fragment just in case it is or could be a causal driver in a PCN for that person.

Keywords:   well-being, positive causal networks, PCN fragments, network theory, causal drivers

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