The Brain’s On and Off Switch for Good Parenting

From an evolutionary perspective, the goal of any organism is to pass genetic material into future generations. We’re “wired” for procreation, but until now, what that exactly that wiring looks like has been opaque. Last week, Harvard biologist Catherine Dulac won the Breakthrough Prize for discovering the neural circuits that drive parenting behavior. For theContinue reading “The Brain’s On and Off Switch for Good Parenting”

Climate Change and Analogs of the Unprecedented

How do we think about combatting climate change? For years, politicians have argued World War II mobilization “provides lessons about how the economy could be transformed,” and “provides a basis for optimism that environmental changes challenges can be met.”[1] co-founded Bill McKibben similarly argues, “we’re under attack from climate change – and your only hopeContinue reading “Climate Change and Analogs of the Unprecedented”

Major life decision ahead? Flipping a coin might help. Literally.

Staring down a major life decision, the uncertainty can be paralyzing. There’s a lot of advice out there about how to go about the decision-making. You can make a pros and cons list, consult friends and spiritual advisors, make insanely complex predictive models, or you could flip a coin. Social psychologists and economists will tellContinue reading “Major life decision ahead? Flipping a coin might help. Literally.”

Race and voting polarization

Earlier this week, Pew Research Center published a report examining the following question: How have Americans’ perceptions of how hard it is to be a black person in this country changed depending on voting choice? After this summer of protests, widely shared imagery of police violence against black Americans, and exhausting debates about the merit’sContinue reading “Race and voting polarization”

How I learn patterns may predict if I believe in God?

In a paper that came out a few days ago, Georgetown neuroscientists examine correlations between pattern-learning neural pathways and belief in God. They had subjects from the United States and Afghanistan do some pattern-learning tasks that involved blocks on screens and tapping keys and then administered surveys about their religious and existential beliefs. TheContinue reading “How I learn patterns may predict if I believe in God?”