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Posts Tagged ‘science


Posted on: November 17, 2012







The Neuroscience of True Grit [Preview]

When tragedy strikes, most of us ultimately rebound surprisingly well. Where does such resilience come from?

By Gary Stix


Image: Photograph by Adam Voorhes. Photographed at The Department of Psychology and Institute for Neuroscience, University of Texas at Austin

In Brief

  • Convention held that psychological resilience to life’s stresses remained a fairly rare event, a product of lucky genes or good parenting.
  • Research into bereavement and natural disasters has found in recent years that the quality of resilience is, in fact, relatively commonplace.
  • People respond to the worst life has to offer with varied behaviors, some of which might be classified as narcissistic or dysfunctional in some other way.
  • But these behaviors—coping ugly, as one researcher calls it—ultimately help with adaptation in a crisis.
  • The question arises whether interventions to teach resilience—programs already instituted in schools and in the military—will really help if people cope naturally on their own.

In fall 2009 Jeannine Brown Miller was driving home with her husband after a visit with her mother in Niagara Falls, N.Y. She came upon a police roadblock near the entrance to the Niagara University campus. Ambulance lights flashed up ahead. Miller knew her 17-year-old son, Jonathan, had been out in his car. Even though she couldn’t make out what was happening clearly, something told her she should stop. She asked one of the emergency workers on the scene to check whether the car had the license plate “J Mill.” A few minutes later a policeman and a chaplain approached, and she knew, even before they reached her, what they would say.

The loss of her son—the result of an undiagnosed medical problem that caused his sudden death even before his car rammed a tree—proved devastating. Time slowed to a crawl in the days immediately after Jonathan’s death. “The first week was like an eternity,” she says. “I lived minute by minute, not even hour by hour. I would just wake up and not think beyond what was in front of me.”


full article – Scientific American – pay site


I read this issue when it first came out.

Collectively and individually

Not just being able to laugh at oneself, but also the nature and frequency – the range and variation of humour able to be expressed.


Because it’s not just about the ability to read and express emotions and limit social capablity to being able to merely respond in kind or in proportion.


But also the ability to display a complexity and nuances, a variety of behaviours and not come across as rigid or stiff and uncomfortable. Behavioral markers people should be paying attention to in their would be political, religious, workplace or social group leaders.


We know enough history and enough about behavioural psychology to be vigilant at the ballot boxes to ensure that the citizens will never need to be armed against the government.


and the measure of a civilization is not the technology or the complexity of production of wealth.


but in the quality of life of the citizens and the social contract being fair, equitable and easy for each person individually and sub groups collectively to be able to work and play well with each other in a way that every person has the ability and access to opportunities to work at their best and fullest capacity in accordance with their interest and effort.


to have shelter and food security, basic survival to be so assured a given as to really not be a worry.

because if you have to worry about your literal survival on a daily basis. then that’s unjust and unsupportable in a global awareness community.


and there’s really no excuse for anyone individual or nation to be isolationist when the world is literally and meaningfully accessible to you on your fucking cell phone or computer or other net gadget.


Invented by atheists and gays. seriously. we’re scientists, inventors, artists.


we make your world worth living and fun


so think about that the next time you say that we don’t know what love is all about.


because the piece of paper that marriage is and the rights that they trigger


don’t compare to what love is really about and commitment





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