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The subject of laughter is one that we all are familiar with and many embrace heartily. Ros Ben-Moshe has researched many aspects of laughter, including historical records, physical effects on the body and the reaction of the brain to laughter. It is not surprising to learn that children laugh more than adults, and it seems that as we age, we become more controlled with our emotions.

The Laughter Effect lists many of the references to laughter from history as well as many different religions. One of my favourites is a record on papyrus from ancient Egypt. A woman sitting upon a man’s lap has farted, she makes an apologetic reference to her accident.

In the Old Testament there are many references such as “Then was our mouth filled with laughter” (Psalms 126:2). Sarah, who became pregnant at ninety, said, “God has brought me laughter.” In the Muslim tradition, it seems that Mohammed laughed and made others laugh. Some of the Dreaming stories refer to Venus when it twinkles while it is low in the sky. They believe an old man has told a rude joke and is laughing.

The author then explains the effect on the brain when we laugh. We know that serotonin is released from the brain and helps to adjust our mood. There are also many subtle changes which are being examined. It is believed that people who laugh a lot live longer and happier lives. Laughter therapies are shown to be medically beneficial, and suitable for all ages. Laughter Yoga and Laughter Wellness classes are being introduced to fill a void in the laughter therapy world.

Using case studies and some ordinary “Mum jokes”, Ros shows us the importance to our body and soul of sharing and enjoying laughter at every chance.

Author Ros Ben-Moshe
Publisher Black Books Inc
ISBN 9781760643331
Distributor Black Books Inc
Released April 2023