Mind the Step...
This section is about various aspects of mind, and influences on the mind. See the other pages for aspects of the so-called extended mind, nature vs. nurture, and mind control.
One thing I do like about scientists is that if a scientist has got hard evidence to support their premise, it doesn't matter if you are black, white or just plain green, it is accepted as science, and thus applies to all of us. Science in the humanities applies to each one of us - unless it is targeted at specific groups etc.
The following videos portray various aspects of the human mind:
Here's a short video that shows why you shouldn't believe almost anyone at all. It shows an experiment based on the game "Chinese Whispers", conducted using the general public in the UK. Chinese Whispers is traditionally a party pastime where a small piece of information is given to someone, who then passes it on (most likely slightly altered) to the next person, then to the next, and the next etc. Eventually, what comes back is frequently almost totally unrecognisable.
Imagine if you will, that everyone is doing this all the time everywhere. We are all filtering, altering, adding and omitting information continually. Even reading books, or the printed word is little different, because it had to pass through someone's mind at some point, meaning it was filtered and altered before being printed. It has just become set in stone by being written down.
What is the answer? Well, this information having just been created, edited and passed through my own filtering mind, I can only say that you should examine everything carefully, not rejecting anything, nor accepting anything until the evidence is very convincing. Often, holding things in abeyance till supportive information comes along is appropriate. Being open, but seeing everything with a curious intelligent mind that is aware of these many pitfalls in our own human nature is the way to go:
How we can all become subject to inhuman traits. The Stanford Prison Experiment conducted by Dr. Philip Zimbardo is a classic. The experiment used a fake jail and took a group of ordinary people. A portion were assigned as guards, and a portion were assigned as prisoners. See how the guards treat the prisoners - who were until a short while ago their friends and compatriots. It is in two parts, and is courtesy of the BBC:
A famous (infamous?) experiment showing how we can be led into making decisions with serious consequences for others:
The following video from CNN is a modern update to both the above. Electric shock "therapy" has been used right up until and including 2012, by the Judge Rotenberg Center in Massachusetts, USA. Their "aversion therapy" is used to "treat" autistic children. All the same characteristics are on display here that have been evidenced since the 1930's and beyond, such as rationalizing internally concepts that are barbaric and inhumane. Others too in the organization stand by apathetically, turning a blind eye to events that would make any normal sane person baulk.
We can also see the same features operating in the The Stanford Prison Experiment conducted by Dr. Philip Zimbardo above, where those that wield power believe they are justified in their actions. Many of their actions (or lack of action), are of course due to a fear of losing a job by not disturbing the status quo, but is any job worth the loss of what it is to be human? If you can't bear to see the whole thing, here is another shorter video from Fox News on YouTube.
Why do we deceive ourselves? White lies and more...
Why Everyone (Else) is a Hypocrite:
The Better Angels of our Nature - Steven Pinker:
The following 20 minute video with Richard Davidson on Edutopia called "The Neuroscience of Social, Emotional and Academic Learning" is actually an interesting mixed bag. Primarily he shows how brain plasticity enables us to learn new things even into old age in many different spheres. However, Davidson also shows us that emotional arousal impacts on our health, and that good emotional regulation is needed to keep our brains and our bodies in better health for longer. He suggests that learning the appropriate methods to do this improves the function of the pre-frontal cortex - a very human part of the brain:
See also: Aspects of the extended mind.
And: Possible aspects of mind control.
If you have an article, video or image to contribute to this section, please get in contact. Remember, we are non-religious, nonpartisan and support no-one, except those who aim to bring truth to everyone, so we can't accept anything with a bias. Real life examples are most welcome.