Violence in human evolution. Anne Pusey compares humans to other species. Males in many species are larger and more aggressive than females. This is due to reproductive potential differential. Most fight singly but in some species, males fight in coalitions, for example lions. She describes how male lions take over prides and kill all the resident males and cubs. But then they switch and defend the pride with the females. Chimpanzees patrol into neighboring community territories and will attack and chimpanzee who is alone by itself. There is no killing in bonobo communities. In chimpanzees, male aggression is mostly only in inter-community conflict, while within the community chimpanzee males form strong social bonds.
Donald Pfaff looks at the endocrinology of violence. Male homicides against other males closely matches the level of testosterone in the blood. Paradoxically testosterone increases the effect of estradiol, a female sex hormone, but the effect on violence is circadian-rhythm dependent (that is, less sunlight, more violence). Drugs that enhance serotonin activity reduce aggression (in hamsters). Drugs that increase nitric oxide activity increase aggressive behavior, while drugs that inhibit nitric oxide activity decreases aggressive behavior. Testosterone activates specific neurons and areas of the brain and inhibits others in such a way as to increase initiation of violence.
Richard Wrangham says there are two kinds of aggression, proactive and reactive. Proactive is ‘cold’, planned, premeditative. The reactive is ‘hot’, impulsive. Proactive is motivated by desire (power, status, money, women, etc), a goal to achieve, targets are consistent, initiation is planned, biological arousal level is low and there are no known pharmacological interventions. Reactive is motivated by fear, initiation is sudden and unplanned, targets are easily switched, biological arousal level is high, and (not very good) pharmacological interventions exist. Inter-group killing in chimpanzees is proactive. He explains the “imbalance of power hypothesis” to explain the violence described in Anne Pusey — a large group is attacking a lone individual. Chimpanzees will attack when there is an imbalance of power such that the chimpanzees that initiate the violence have overwhelming odds of winning with little injury. Cranio-facial feminization in males is a sign of reduced aggression, and humans have more cranio-facial feminization in males than chimpanzees.

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(Source: youtube.com)

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(Source: youtube.com)

(via Eye movements reveal difference between love and lust | UChicago News)

"Eye patterns concentrate on a stranger’s face if the viewer sees that person as a potential partner in romantic love, but the viewer gazes more at the other person’s body if he or she is feeling sexual desire. That automatic judgment can occur in as little as half a second, producing different gaze patterns."

(via Eye movements reveal difference between love and lust | UChicago News)

"Eye patterns concentrate on a stranger’s face if the viewer sees that person as a potential partner in romantic love, but the viewer gazes more at the other person’s body if he or she is feeling sexual desire. That automatic judgment can occur in as little as half a second, producing different gaze patterns."

"When men imagine a female uprising, they imagine a world in which women rule men as men have ruled women."

Sally Kempton

I feel this is very important.

(via yourenotsylviaplath)

It’s been apparent to me for a while that most men can’t really imagine “equality.”  All they can imagine is having the existing power structure inverted.

I cannot decide whether this shows how unimaginative they are, or shows how aware they must be of what they do in order to so deeply fear having it turned on them.

(via lepetitmortpourmoi)

"Most men can’t really imagine “equality.”  All they can imagine is having the existing power structure inverted."

(via misandry-mermaid)

(via transhumanisticpanspermia)

"Many personality characteristics of creative people … make them more vulnerable, including openness to new experiences, a tolerance for ambiguity, and an approach to life and the world that is relatively free of preconceptions. This flexibility permits them to perceive things in a fresh and novel way, which is an important basis for creativity. But it also means that their inner world is complex, ambiguous, and filled with shades of gray rather than black and white. It is a world filled with many questions and few easy answers. While less creative people can quickly respond to situations based on what they have been told by people in authority — parents, teachers, pastors, rabbis, or priests — the creative person lives in a more fluid and nebulous world. He or she may have to confront criticism or rejection for being too questioning, or too unconventional. Such traits can lead to feelings of depression or social alienation. A highly original person may seem odd or strange to others. Too much openness means living on the edge. Sometimes the person may drop over the edge… into depression, mania, or perhaps schizophrenia.
Creative ideas probably occur as part of a potentially dangerous mental process, when associations in the brain are flying freely during unconscious mental states — how thoughts must become momentarily disorganized prior to organizing. Such a process is very similar to that which occurs during psychotic states of mania, depression, or schizophrenia. In fact, the great Swiss psychiatrist Eugen Bleuler, who gave schizophrenia its name, described a “loosening of associations” as its most characteristic feature: “Of the thousands of associative threads that guide our thinking, this disease seems to interrupt, quite haphazardly, sometimes single threads, sometimes a whole group, and sometimes whole segments of them.”
When the associations flying through the brain self-organize to form a new idea, the result is creativity. But if they either fail to self-organize, or if they self-organize to create an erroneous idea, the result is psychosis. Sometimes both occur in the same person, and the result is a creative person who is also psychotic. As [schizophrenic mathematician John] Nash [who inspired the film A Beautiful Mind] once said: “the ideas I have about supernatural beings came to me the same way that my mathematical ideas did, so I took them seriously.”
All human beings (and their brains) have to cope with the fact that their five senses gather more information than even the magnificent human brain is able to process. To put this another way: we need to be able to ignore a lot of what is happening around us — the smell of pizza baking, the sound of the cat meowing, or the sight of birds flying outside the window — if we are going to focus our attention and concentrate on what we are doing (in your case, for example, reading this book). Our ability to filter out unnecessary stimuli and focus our attention is mediated by brain mechanisms in regions known as the thalamus and the reticular activating system.
Our ability to use our brains to get “outside” our relatively limited personal perspectives and circumstances, and to see something other than the “objective” world, is a powerful gift. Many people fail to realize that they even have this gift, and most who do rarely use it."

— – Nancy Andreasen, The Creating Brain

Tags: creativity

A neuroscientist describes her DMT trip in detail.

(Source: youtube.com)

(via First pictures from inside the ‘crater at the end of the world’)
(via The Brain In Love (VIDEO) — Sex And Psychology)

What happens inside the brain when we experience romantic love? To that end, Fisher describes a series of studies she conducted in which people were put in MRI machines and shown images of their loved ones. The incredible results help to explain why romantic love is such an intense and consuming state, why some couples are able to maintain passion longer than others, and why breakups can be so devastating. Fisher also explores the similarities between romantic love and addiction (for instance, you see tolerance, withdrawal, and relapse in both cases), and even considers parallels to romantic love in the animal kingdom. Check out the full video below for more on the neurochemistry behind love. 

http://www.lehmiller.com/blog/2014/7/11/the-brain-in-love-video

(via The Brain In Love (VIDEO) — Sex And Psychology)

What happens inside the brain when we experience romantic love? To that end, Fisher describes a series of studies she conducted in which people were put in MRI machines and shown images of their loved ones. The incredible results help to explain why romantic love is such an intense and consuming state, why some couples are able to maintain passion longer than others, and why breakups can be so devastating. Fisher also explores the similarities between romantic love and addiction (for instance, you see tolerance, withdrawal, and relapse in both cases), and even considers parallels to romantic love in the animal kingdom. Check out the full video below for more on the neurochemistry behind love.

http://www.lehmiller.com/blog/2014/7/11/the-brain-in-love-video

(Source: youtube.com)