Apr 25, 2007

the more you know... about the brain

Slate, in its special Brain! issue, asks neuroscientists and other sundry students of the brain whether theory translates into personal practice. A sample:
Daniel Gilbert
Because it is so difficult to know whether a particular brain change will be invisible or catastrophic, I try to change mine as little as possible.

Joshua Greene
Knowing this helps me tolerate the contradictions in myself and others: Am I happy? Did she do that intentionally? Can people change? These questions never have single answers because we're not single things.

David Linden
This knowledge should prevent me from trying to get away with these behaviors, but it doesn't. Neurobiological insight just makes me feel like even more of an idiot afterward.
A common theme among many of those quoted: charity and empathy for others based on the recognition of the fallibility and fragility of normalcy. I second that emotion.

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