Patrons enjoying an outdoor meal at Il Pastaio restaurant at North Canon and Brighton Way on March 4th in Beverly Hills were terrified, as it would be for any of us. A targeted attack during a quiet lunchtime in a peaceful community had taken place before their eyes. A man was robbed of his watch and a bystander woman was shot and seriously injured. The City of Beverly Hills and Beverly Hills Police Department responded as citizens who care about public safety would hope. BHPD has been present, has addressed the community worries and fears, and has made a commitment to “take every possible measure to ensure (their) safety and security.” Source: Photo by Daisy Naranjo from Pexels This sounds positive, right? But, that’s not the only story. What’s at stake is far more frightening than the alarming armed robbery and shooting carried out in broad daylight. punishment , and of course, ignore the victims. That recent armed robbery in Beverly Hills mirrors an … [Read more...] about When Crime is Made Worse By Policies
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Freud once wrote: "I have no inclination to keep the domain of the psychological floating as it were in the air, without any organic foundation. Let the biologists go as far as they can and let us go as far as we can. Some day the two will meet." In the field of neuroscience , that day may be approaching. There has been an explosion of interest in unconscious processes in the brain. Freud’s canonical idea that our emotional life has unconscious origins is now widely accepted. Neuropsychoanalysis — a movement that seeks to relate unconscious phenomena discovered through psychoanalysis to brain processes — is gaining momentum. Source: Neuropsychoanalysis Association, used with permission For example, neuroimaging studies and neuroanatomical studies of mammals have shown that there are two brain systems involved in fear. A system centered on a subcortical structure, the amygdala, is optimized for immediate response to possible signs of danger in the environment … [Read more...] about The Psychodynamic Brain
This post is a review of Useful Delusions: The Power and Paradox of the Self-Deceiving Brain . By Shankar Vedantam & Bill Mesler. W.W. Norton & Company. 233 pp. $27.95 In 1988, Donald Lowry, founder of the “Church of Love,” was tried for mail fraud. A balding, middle-aged con artist living in Moline, Illinois, Lowry assumed the persona of dozens of young, female “Angels,” ostensibly building Chonda-Za, a Garden of Eden-like paradise. He sent love letters to tens of thousands of men, using fonts that imitated actual handwriting and pastel-tinted stationary. Many men responded, sustained the relationships for years, and sent money to support soulmates they never met. By the time Lowry was arrested, his business had grossed millions of dollars; employed fifty people; occupied the entirety of a large downtown office building. Mr. Lowry owned twenty cars, including Rolls Royces and Jaguars. At Lowry’s trial, Shankar Vedantam and Bill Mesler reveal, several victims of the … [Read more...] about The Psychological Forces That Hinder Us From Seeing Reality
Is there something wrong about the manner in which communication occurs through social media — not only in terms of its possible negative effects on mental health, but in terms of the model of communication promoted? Several years ago, Noam Chomsky suggested that social media 1 “ …..erodes normal human relations. It makes them more superficial, shallow, evanescent. ” Chomsky’s concerns about social media, as a part of the wider media, are complex, involving both its impact on communication and on power, and while he may have gotten this one right, there are more compelling and troubling reasons to push this argument. Views regarding the nature of communication as primarily social may provide a better understanding of the problems facing current social media interactions. Any system of communication driven by an artificial intelligence approach will not adequately mimic the purpose of real social communication between biological organisms, and could pervert the process. … [Read more...] about Is Social Media Fostering “Inhumane” Communication?
Source: Orpheus Leading Eurydice from the Underworld by Jean-Baptiste-Camille Corot/Wikimedia Commons You know the song—it’s not Greek Mythology’s most popular track, but it’s definitely on the greatest-hits album. The singer Orpheus, son of the solar god Apollo, weds his beloved Eurydice. She dies. She dies young, too young, and Orpheus isn’t having it. So Orpheus descends into the underworld, charming the Stygian horrors that block his path using only his voice and lyre. Hades himself is so moved that he offers Orpheus an unheard-of deal: He may take his bride back to the land of the living, but only if he completes the journey without once looking back at her. He tries. He really does. He almost makes it. But almost doesn’t count for much in the underworld. The Orpheus myth is unusual because it lacks the defining narrative arc that drives Greek tragedy: a hero undone by his fatal flaw. Arrogant King Oedipus ignored the advice of the oracle and persisted in his … [Read more...] about The Psychology of Orpheus: Why Do We Look Back?