Tapping into the findings of his latest book, NYTimes columnist David Brooks unpacks new insights into human nature from the cognitive sciences -- insights with massive implications for economics and politics as well as our own self-knowledge.
Buddhist roshi Joan Halifax works with people at the last stage of life (in hospice and on death row). She shares what she's learned about compassion in the face of death and dying, and a deep insight into the nature of empathy.
Children are living in an “unprecedented toxic climate” in which they skip meals to stay thin, are bombarded by pornographic images and fear they will be failures amid a “continuous onslaught of stress at school”, according to research published...
Do children become more kind and empathetic after a disaster— or does the experience make them more focus more on self-preservation?
The first study to examine the question in an experimental way shows that children’s reactions may depend on their age.
The ability to study the altruistic and empathetic tendencies of youth before and after a natural disaster emerged after an earthquake struck in May 2008 in Mianyang, China. Scientists from the U.S. and Canada were already collaborating with Chinese researchers in the town in Sichuan province on a study of altruistic behavior when the earthquake, which measured 8.0 on the Richter scale, killed some 87,000 people, including many children.
It’s a question that’s perplexed philosophers for centuries and scientists for decades: Where does consciousness come from? We know it exists, at least in ourselves. But how it arises from chemistry and electricity in our brains is an unsolved mystery.
Even when we watch television or read a book alone, we do it as a member of various groups: as a member of a family or as a friend; as a member of a group like Weight Watchers; or as a member of a social media group, like ...
The study of metropolitan areas and how their inhabitants interact with them is key to planning our future as a species (Cities and their psychology: how neuroscience affects urban planning http://t.co/gJLXBVK1RB)...
"The widespread existence of cooperation is difficult to explain because individuals face strong incentives to exploit the cooperative tendencies of others. In the research reported here, we examined how the spread of reputational information through gossip promotes cooperation in mixed-motive settings. Results showed that individuals readily communicated reputational information about others, and recipients used this information to selectively interact with cooperative individuals and ostracize those who had behaved selfishly, which enabled group members to contribute to the public good with reduced threat of exploitation. Additionally, ostracized individuals responded to exclusion by subsequently cooperating at levels comparable to those who were not ostracized. These results suggest that the spread of reputational information through gossip can mitigate egoistic behavior by facilitating partner selection, thereby helping to solve the problem of cooperation even in noniterated interactions."
Paul J. Zak is the founding Director of the Center for Neuroeconomics Studies and Professor of Economics, Psychology and Management at Claremont Graduate University. He is the author of The Moral Molecule: The Source of Love and Prosperity.
Is nonconformity and freethinking a mental illness? According to the newest addition of the DSM-IV (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders), it certainly is. The manual identifies a new mental illness called “oppositional defiant disorder” or ODD. Defined as an “ongoing pattern of disobedient, hostile and defiant behavior,” symptoms include questioning authority, negativity, defiance, argumentativeness, and being easily annoyed. http://theunboundedspirit.com/nonconformity-and-freethinking-now-considered-mental-illnesses/