The Reason for Laughter – The Dictionary Loop

Alright, before I start I would like everyone to make note of my previous posts. Every time I get into a long winded theory I usually do a bit of research, and then share that research with everyone. I form my opinions around that research, and I know everyone starts attacking my opinions when I dont define them first. Those lovely attacks that usually start with That isn’t what it means, or you dont know what your talking about, well I avoid those. I provide the literal definition I find in my research, so I know my opinion is backed up with facts.

Today, I found myself laughing most of the day because a good friend of my was sharing a view comedy videos, and I dont usually watch them all at once. So after laughing most of the day away, I got to thinking about why a person laughs. I briefly talked to my friend about it, but that was not nearly as detailed as I want it to be.

The action or sound of laughing
verb: make the spontaneous sounds and movements of the face and body that are the instinctive expressions of lively amusement and sometimes also of contempt or derision.
noun: an act of laughing
Causing laughter or amusement; humorous.
Difficult to explain or understand; strange.
The state or experience of finding something funny
Causing lighthearted laughter and amusement; comic
Contemptuous ridicule or mockery

So, I have learned two things, I have too much time on my hands, and that laughter basically comes down to either something that is “strange” or something that is the result of a ridicule or mockery. So that basically means we laugh when we are confused, or we laugh at something is bad. I got this result because I had searched for six definitions, just to find the meaning of one. So lets walk through the above definitions one by one, and see just how Laughter, something that we view is a good thing, turns into something that is actually a bad thing.

I started my search with the word Laughter, thinking I should start with something that appears to be a formal word, because I was trying to find a real definition, not some slang explanation such as bro, which we all know is actually brother (search it yourself). Sadly, that is actually what I got, a slang type definition, the action or sound of laughing. I guess I need to search for Laughing next. This of course redirects me to the word Laugh because ing is a suffix, and doesn’t change the definition. I was surprised at the length of the verb definition, and might have been satisfied with this, however, I noticed the noun definition, and I about died. The same wording Laughter gave me, an act of laughing. Now I was pretty curious, and decided to see if I could delve deeper into the meaning. I decided to look up Funny, because I laugh when something is “funny”. Needless to say, that was a stupid mistake, because I got the same words, causing laughter. Here I am sitting back at the definition of Laugh, because Laughter goes to laughing, which redirects to laugh.

Then I noticed the rest of the definition, amusement, it was in both Laugh and Funny, so why not, lets look up amusement. I was eager to know the definition, thinking that amusement is a nice fancy word, that should have a decent definition, but then I saw the words “finding something funny”, this just puzzled my mind. Funny causes amusement, which is finding something funny. Looking at Funny again, I see humorous, so I figured that since its the third part of the definition, and I have yet to look it up, it might lead somewhere. Well needless to say I was wrong, the definition includes all of the words I have looked up, Laughter and amusement.

So here I am, once again, checking the definition of Laugh, which is apparently an expression of itself. Nearing the end of the verb definition, I find my last hope, contempt or derision. What the hell does the word derision mean. Turns out this word actually has a short and sweet definition, that does not go back to the word Laugh. Derision apparently means ridicule or mockery. I understood this definition, because I do laugh when someone gets made fun of, but not always. After all this research that is what it has finally dead ended, there is no further researching because I got the meaning of why we laugh. There were only two dead ends, Funny which has a second meaning of “strange”, and Derision, which has a short definition of mockery.

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