hi all. saw disney "inside out" movie last sunday & liked it, usually like pixar movies.[a1] it was imaginative and well acted, the characters multidimensional. liked the idea of conflicting emotions as separate personalities on a team attempting to achieve consensus and a sort of paradoxical chaotic equilibrium ensuing. and the internal microcosm reflecting the outer macrocosm.
there is an old idea in philosophy and AI (artificial intelligence), the concept of a "homunculus" or a little man in our head that helps us make decisions. its rejected in philosophy as a kind of joke or (maybe one of the original) "infinite regresses" like looking in a hall of mirror and only seeing more mirrors.
so the movie is a good excuse to unleash a bunch of saved links on nearby topics saved over many months... note these are all links below & click on the hyperlinked link #s to go to the page. (alas our salon has some goofy linking layout that cant be user-overridden.)
have a new book on "positive psychology". have studied psychology quite deeply over many years & lately to thrive-or-merely-survive relationship(s). psychology is a powerful tool but it also has limits. this is gonna sound crazy or codependent but sometimes in life the biggest obstacles are other people. HAH! recently studied the book "cognitive behavior therapy for dummies" and find it really useful and powerful. it puts emotions as subservient to logic which appeals to my scientific side.
there is a ton of new research into psychology and at least lots of excellent information for us to utilize in our daily lives if we so choose. and the choice between functional and dysfunctional patterns becomes more obvious and the understanding more widespread. there is a mass/ wealth of material and resources for those who choose the path of insight so to speak. and stuff like ancient religions such as zen are meshing with modern theory about eg "mindfulness" which is non secular.
religion used to fill some of this role, but there are remarkable statistics that the next generation considers itself the least religious ever. religions are fading! this is a staggering thought, a massive paradigm shift after millenia of religion guiding human behavior. what is filling in the vacuum? it may sound sacreligious to suggest that psychology is taking this role, but it really is!
is it a sign of deterioration? think not because the field of psychology is so vast. in some ways its even larger than religious ideas. its scientific and increasingly meshes with insights from real neurobiology.
so here we are and deep psychological insights are boiled down to little listicles shared on popular web sites and splattering around facebook. pinging around mass/ popular consciousness. hey maybe there is hope for humanity. evolution is a slow process. but there seems to be tangible advances in the last few years.
in my younger years in college "emotional intelligence" hadnt even been labelled (the concept came about in the mid 1990s with Golemans breakthrough book). however teachers talked about "people skills". the dean said that companies gave the feedback that some kids had high grades but couldnt communicate well or interact well on teams. so my curriculum included significant electives and stuff like speech class, engineering presentations, many papers written, etc.
so its cool to see more awareness, and even kids are getting these advanced ideas in popular entertainment like disney/ pixar movies.
psychology started out with Freud in a therapeutic mode, working with dysfunction, somewhat crisis management/ oriented (as the term is in business... "never let a good crisis go to waste" —Rahm Emanuel). but the relatively new field of positive psychology has a quite different slant and is useful to high functional people. so psychology is not just about fixing whats broken now but understanding what makes people thrive. hey now then all we have left to do is deal with our (mass?) dysfunctional environments eg in workplace, families, and the mass economic/ political/ social systme right? dont worry, be happy!
this concept is recognized in psychology as the idea of "adapting to WHAT" problem! there are a few essays/ analyses in this area. what if psychology sometimes gets people to adapt to maladaptive environments? thats a whole other can of worms, but a looming one for mindful thinkers! actually there is some new research that highly intelligent people may be more prone to depression and some other psychological downsides. sometimes it seems nearly everything in life is a double edged sword eh?
hope you find something interesting/ engaging/ enjoyable/ thought provoking, do enjoy comments & will probably reply to most!