The Storytelling Animal: The Science of How We Came to Live and Breathe Stories by Maria Popova Where a third of our entire life goes, or what professional wrestling has to do with War and Peace. “The universe is made of stories, not atoms,” poet Muriel Rukeyser memorably asserted, and Harvard sociobiologist E. Gottschall articulates a familiar mesmerism: Human minds yield helplessly to the suction of story. Joining these favorite book trailers is a wonderful short black-and-white teaser animation: One particularly important aspect of storytelling Gottschall touches on is the osmotic balance between the writer’s intention and the reader’s interpretation, something Mortimer Adler argued for decades ago in his eloquent case for marginalia. The writer is not … an all-powerful architect of our reading experience. In discussing the extent to which we live in stories, Gottschall puts in concrete terms something most of us suspect — fear, perhaps — on an abstract, intuitive level: the astounding amount of time we spend daydreaming. Share on Tumblr
Six Habits of Highly Empathic People Photo Credit: Shutterstock.com/Andy Dean Photography January 27, 2014 | Like this article? Join our email list: Stay up to date with the latest headlines via email. This article originally appeared on Greater Good, the online magazine of UC Berkeley's Greater Good Science Center. If you think you’re hearing the word “empathy” everywhere, you’re right. But what is empathy? The big buzz about empathy stems from a revolutionary shift in the science of how we understand human nature. Over the last decade, neuroscientists have identified a 10-section “empathy circuit” in our brains which, if damaged, can curtail our ability to understand what other people are feeling. But empathy doesn’t stop developing in childhood. Habit 1: Cultivate Curiosity about Strangers Highly empathic people (HEPs) have an insatiable curiosity about strangers. Curiosity expands our empathy when we talk to people outside our usual social circle, encountering lives and worldviews very different from our own.
This Is Your Brain on Love | Brain Pickings Why We Love: 5 Books on the Psychology of Love It’s often said that every song, every poem, every novel, every painting ever created is in some way “about” love. What this really means is that love is a central theme, an underlying preoccupation, in humanity’s greatest works. But what exactly is love? How does its mechanism spur such poeticism, and how does it lodge itself in our minds, hearts and souls so completely, so stubbornly, as to permeate every aspect of the human imagination? Today, we turn to 5 essential books that are “about” love in a different way — they turn an inquisitive lens towards this grand phenomenon and try to understand where it comes from, how it works, and what it means for the human condition. No superlative is an exaggeration of Alain de Botton‘s humble brilliance spanning everything from philosophy to architecture. Every fall into love involves [to adapt Oscar Wilde] the triumph of hope over self-knowledge. Sample her work with this fantastic TED talk on the brain in love: Is love really blind?
J.M. Guillen's Blog - Revolution! A Manifesto for Authors - September 04, 2013 18:49 I was born too early.I was born far too late. I will probably never walk upon the surface of Mars. I doubt I will live on a space station. Never will I soar through the deep, empty vast, and look back on our home.I was born too early. I will never see the American frontier as it was meant to be seen. However, it cannot be said that there are no frontiers for me. “Here, there were labyrinths of pueblos hidden beneath the sun-lit land. Their four voices blended as one. The man was ancient, older than days. Then, a boy, young but strangely wise. There was a woman; she stood behind the man, with eyes of obsidian and flame. Then, a bird. Then, again, they spoke together. In the world of The Herald of Autumn, we live in “The next world”. One voice. Minions, I tell you over and over again that I’m here to conquer the world. So let’s talk revolution. You live in a time where one voice may cast its way across the earth. We must wield this power. I don’t know you. We have a world to conquer. You.
The Benefits of Talking about Thoughts with Tots Every parent knows that toddlers are strange and inscrutable creatures. They are capricious and contradictory, particularly when trying to interact with other people. My two-year-old daughter is no exception. One moment she is worrying about a crying baby. The next, she is snatching away her friend’s toy and shouting, “Mine!” For decades, scientists believed that theory of mind – the ability to reason about other people’s thoughts and emotions – doesn’t begin to mature until children reach the age of three or four. Most two- and three-year-olds answer that Sally would look in the box because that’s where they know the ball is. While children’s performance on the false-belief task initially led scientists to conclude that theory of mind develops around age four, that assumption has since been overturned. While children typically master the standard false-belief task around the age of four, the timing can range from three to nearly six years of age, depending on the child.
The best time to drink coffee according to science I came across this interesting article by Steven Miller Ph.D.and I decided to create this post based on what he suggested in his article. Thank you for your wicked awesome observations, Steve! There's also a pretty good writeup on Forbes with Q&A regarding shift workers and why the best time to drink coffee may not necessarily be in the morning. link. Sources: Gizmodo, NeuroscienceDC, Dailynews If you donate $5+, I'll send you this refrigerator magnet as a little thank you gift.
Unleashing Empathy: How Teachers Transform Classrooms With Emotional Learning by Lennon Flowers The secret to learning self-awareness, cooperation, and other “social and emotional learning” skills lies in experience, not in workbooks and rote classroom exercises. posted Apr 04, 2014 Photo by Studio One/Shutterstock. Each week, in hundreds of classrooms around the world, elementary school students sit cross-legged in a circle, surrounding a baby clad in a onesie with the word “Teacher” on the front. Over the course of a year, students learn to label the baby’s feelings and to interpret his or her actions. They learn to look beyond language to identify underlying emotions, whether joy, fear, frustration, or curiosity. They’re in a program called Roots of Empathy, part of a growing education trend broadly referred to as “social and emotional learning” (SEL), where children—and often their teachers and parents—learn to manage emotions, and to develop the skills required to establish relationships, de-escalate and resolve conflict, and effectively collaborate with others. More Stories
6 Things I Learned from Charles Bukowski Altucher Confidential Posted by James Altucher Bukowski was disgusting, his actual real fiction is awful, he’s been called a misogynist, overly simplistic, the worst narcissist, (and probably all of the above are true to an extent) and whenever there’s a collection of “Greatest American Writers” he’s never included. And yet… he’s probably the greatest American writer ever. Whether you’ve read him or not, and most have not, there’s 6 things worthy of learning from an artist like Bukoswski. I consider “Ham on Rye” by Bukowski probably the greatest American novel ever written. I’m almost embarrassed to admit he’s an influence. 1) Honesty. (my favorite comic book artist, R. Most fiction writers do what fiction writers do: they make stuff up. There’s one story he wrote (I forget the name) where he’s sitting in a bar and he wants to be alone and some random guy starts talking to him: “its horrible about all those girls who were burned” and Bukowski says (I’m getting the words a little off. 2) Persistence. 25 years!
How Should We Live: History’s Forgotten Wisdom on Love, Time, Family, Empathy, and Other Aspects of the Art of Living by Maria Popova “How to pursue the art of living has become the great quandary of our age… The future of the art of living can be found by gazing into the past.” “He who cannot draw on three thousand years is living from hand to mouth,” Goethe famously proclaimed. He writes in the introduction: How to pursue the art of living has become the great quandary of our age.[…]I believe that the future of the art of living can be found by gazing into the past. Rather than approaching that wonderbox as an instructional manual, however, Krznaric looks at history as a choose-your-own-adventure compendium of do’s as well as don’ts. We need to trace the historical origins of these legacies which have quietly crept into our lives and surreptitiously shaped our worldviews. The Histomap by John Sparks, 1931. In a chapter on love, Krznaric contends that our modern definition of love is too narrow, which both deprives us of the breadth of this grand human capacity and sets us up for disappointment:
Brain & Cognition • Brain Plasticity Is A Critical Part of Learning And Relearning The Science of Love: How Positivity Resonance Shapes the Way We Connect by Maria Popova The neurobiology of how the warmest emotion blurs the boundaries by you and not-you. We kick-started the year with some of history’s most beautiful definitions of love. But timeless as their words might be, the poets and the philosophers have a way of escaping into the comfortable detachment of the abstract and the metaphysical, leaving open the question of what love really is on an unglamorously physical, bodily, neurobiological level — and how that might shape our experience of those lofty abstractions. She begins with a definition that parallels Dorion Sagan’s scientific meditation on sex: First and foremost, love is an emotion, a momentary state that arises to infuse your mind and body alike. Fredrickson zooms in on three key neurobiological players in the game of love — your brain, your levels of the hormone oxytocin, and your vagus nerve, which connects your brain to the rest of your body — and examines their interplay as the core mechanism of love, summing up:
Pourquoi écrire ? (Brancusi photographe) C'est une phrase de Constantin Brancusi au mur de cette exposition au Centre Pompidou (jusqu'au 12 septembre) qu'on se prend en pleine poire, directe, brutale : "Pourquoi écrire sur mes sculptures ? Pourquoi ne pas tout simplement montrer leurs photos ?" Comment écrire après cela ? Je réalise que, dans la plupart des cas (sauf peut-être pour Tirgu Jiu où je suis allé il y a bien longtemps), l'image que je conserve à l'esprit des sculptures de Brancusi est une image photographique plus que sculpturale. Cette exposition est remarquable pour deux raisons, et c'est un must de votre été parisien : d'une part, elle montre les films de Brancusi, pratiquement jamais vus jusqu'ici (et on peut acquérir le DVD), et deuxièmement, elle démontre éloquemment que ses photographies (et certains de ses films) sont des oeuvres d'art à part entière. Brancusi est donc un photographe autant qu'un sculpteur et, photographiant ses sculptures, il les transforme, et, de ce fait, il crée à nouveau.