The 1978 book Laugh After Laugh, the Healing Power of Humor by Raymond Moody, Jr., MD, (not to be confused with Allen Klein’s excellent 1989 book The Healing Power of Humor) was published when the scientific study of humor was quite new. It came out, in fact, a year before Norman Cousins’ Anatomy of an Illness as Perceived by the Patient, which has long been considered a classic in the field of humor and health.
What I have always appreciated from Dr. Moody’s book is his explanation of six different ways to define a sense of humor ranging from “we laugh at the same sort of things” to “the life of the party/comedian” to what I consider our #1 survival tool, “the cosmic perspective sense.” Dr. Moody himself suggests it is this sort of view of the world that is likely to have the most health benefits. A person with a cosmic perspective sense of humor, he says, “has the ability to perceive life comically without thereby losing any respect for himself or for humanity in general.” In other words, those of us with this sixth sense of humor recognize the world is a crazy, not-always-welcoming place, and life is often absurd, but we love them both anyway. Cultivate that sense.