So it seems that w/o discontentment, fear, shame, unhappiness, pain, greed, etc a lot of things would not get done.
If you eliminated all these negative emotions, our motive to do medical research, to grow the economy, to protect the environment, to fight for human/civil rights, etc. would pretty much go away.
But too much of these emotions cause problems too. Apathy, paralysis, misery, short sightedness, regretful actions.
So how do you know how much fear of pain and death it takes to make people want to do medical research, but not so much that they become suicidal wrecks instead of scientists?
If people weren’t discontent and angry with being screwed over, you’d never see pushbacks against government abuse and corporate abuse. However too much discontentment just makes people cynical and withdrawn.
Is there an ideal level of negativity where people get motivated, but not too much that it paralyzes them and makes the miserable or counterproductive?
Or is it more the existence of meaningful avenues to act on these negative emotions to change situations more than the intensity of the emotions that matters?
I was thinking it is similar to unemployment. An unemployment rate that is too low might prevent businesses from changing around or letting new technologies come in and change old industries. But too much unemployment just makes people depressed and miserable. So you need a middle ground.
What is the middle ground between negativity that incites constructive pushback against abuse vs negativity that just destroys the individual experiencing the unpleasant situation?