The Geography Of Bliss Summary

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The Geography of Bliss: Summary of Chapter 4 (Qatar)

At the very beginning of the chapter, Eric presents Saud bin Mohammed al-Thani, a seikh member of Qatar 's royal family that spent $1.5 billion on art masterpieces in a couple of years. The author wonders if the secret to happiness really is money, so he bought a plane ticket to Qatar 's capital city, Doha, where there are so many rich people. It 's at the beginning that he mentions what he concluded after visiting Qatar: “taxes are good, families are bad”. We can deduce that he 's telling the story not while he 's living it, but after he left it, contrarily to the previous chapters.

The author realizes that the people going in Qatar don 't have cheap tastes, for none of them flew in business
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He mentions that Qatar is 98.09 percent desert. “Deserts are not considered happy places” but many religious texts form Islam and Judaism, two religions that took root in the desert, glorify life in the desert and affirms that people living in the desert are happier than people living in the mountains even though they have everything because moisture makes them stupid.

Lisa says that Qataris have no culture (“no cuisine, no literature, and no arts”) nor justice, even though they have a ministry for both of them.

Based on his conversation with Lisa, he concludes that people with a hard life (alcohol problems in the family, criminal records, etc.) are tempted to go live in Qatar to run away from their unhappiness. “Conventional wisdom tells us this doesn 't work” but the author thinks that such thing is possible.

Eric decides to leave his hotel earlier because he was ‘’too’’ satisfied in this tomb. The jacketed attendants were trying too hard to make him happy by asking and doing everything he asks for, it got on his nerves. He 's happy when he enters another hotel and sees that no attendants are greeting him and that there 's a crack in the ceiling. It makes him feel relieved, even though his new hotel is still
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Atheists believe that belief is the illusion of happiness and they reject religion. A suicide bomber or a pedophile may think they are happy but they don 't do any good so according to Aristotle, these people are not happy at all. A social worker should be truly happy. The author thinks that it 's not the fact that they believe in God that makes them happy but the fact that they believe in something, which explains why Switzerland, Denmark and Netherlands are happy countries; they believe in other stuff like democracy or human

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