Worldly Talk

Civil discussion and debate on real world events and issues.


Social Justice in Schools

   
Quote:
Originally Posted by impfireball View Post
People tend to forget about bad stuff, and remember the good times. It's a brain coping mechanism. This happens even when you've seen a bad movie. Can you recall specific details of any bad movies you saw a few months back?
This isn't true in general, it depends on the person in question. Some people can only remember the good things, some only the bad things. For instance, I can still, with photographic clarity, remember all of the awkward slips of the tongue I made 15 years ago, although they were entirely irrelevant and had no impact on my further life. Conversely, even important positive events are easily forgotten in a matter of days.


As for the piece you linked, MonkWren... that's all good and well, but principle 3 seems foolish. Why? Because happiness and sadness are the driving forces behind what we do. If you can choose to turn off mystery, there no longer is a 'stick' forcing you to do better. If you can choose to be happy whenever you want, there no longer is a 'carrot'.
What this person suggests is to be permanently content with mediocrity. Sure, you'll be happy if you get his idea to work, but you'll be an entirely self-centered, entirely useless egotist wallowing in how awesome they are. I'll take misery over that any day.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ikul View Post
As for the piece you linked, MonkWren... that's all good and well, but principle 3 seems foolish. Why? Because happiness and sadness are the driving forces behind what we do. If you can choose to turn off mystery, there no longer is a 'stick' forcing you to do better. If you can choose to be happy whenever you want, there no longer is a 'carrot'.
What this person suggests is to be permanently content with mediocrity. Sure, you'll be happy if you get his idea to work, but you'll be an entirely self-centered, entirely useless egotist wallowing in how awesome they are. I'll take misery over that any day.
While I would object to that passage for different reasons, I do agree that it is, ultimately, garbage.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tedronai View Post
While I would object to that passage for different reasons, I do agree that it is, ultimately, garbage.
Out of curiosity: care to elaborate?

I expected to disagree with it but I actually liked that article very much. It demonstrates some clear examples of the principles it discusses and while I wouldn't call them "rules to live by" I would definitely recommend keeping them in mind.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ikul View Post
This isn't true in general, it depends on the person in question. Some people can only remember the good things, some only the bad things. For instance, I can still, with photographic clarity, remember all of the awkward slips of the tongue I made 15 years ago, although they were entirely irrelevant and had no impact on my further life. Conversely, even important positive events are easily forgotten in a matter of days.


As for the piece you linked, MonkWren... that's all good and well, but principle 3 seems foolish. Why? Because happiness and sadness are the driving forces behind what we do. If you can choose to turn off mystery, there no longer is a 'stick' forcing you to do better. If you can choose to be happy whenever you want, there no longer is a 'carrot'.
What this person suggests is to be permanently content with mediocrity. Sure, you'll be happy if you get his idea to work, but you'll be an entirely self-centered, entirely useless egotist wallowing in how awesome they are. I'll take misery over that any day.
I agree; sadness can be as important a motivator as happiness. That said, I think I would replace it with something like "don't let your emotions emotions control your actions" - remember to adjust your behavior both on the emotions you feel and the facts that you know. That said, the general principle is right - we are responsible for the emotions we feel, although we aren't always good at controlling them.

Quote:
Originally Posted by impfireball
People tend to forget about bad stuff, and remember the good times. It's a brain coping mechanism. This happens even when you've seen a bad movie. Can you recall specific details of any bad movies you saw a few months back?
This is incorrect. People remember emotionally charged events, positive or negative. I'm sure most (if not all) of us can say exactly where we were and what we were doing when we first heard about 9/11, just as many of us probably have strong memories of presidential elections, marriages, deaths, births, car accidents, and the like. Events that trigger a strong emotional response are what are most memorable, regardless of positive or negative connotation. Here's a Time magazine interview that covers the bare basics: http://www.time.com/time/health/arti...817329,00.html

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ikul View Post
Out of curiosity: care to elaborate?
Personally, I'd be attacking the core premise itself, that emotions are directly (or near enough) controllable by simple conscious decision.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tedronai View Post
Personally, I'd be attacking the core premise itself, that emotions are directly (or near enough) controllable by simple conscious decision.
There's a fair amount of research that's been done on cognitive control of emotions, and it is possible, although links are hard to find as they're usually behind paywalls (ex: http://psycnet.apa.org/journals/gpr/2/3/271/). It's certainly not easily to control your emotions, but it is possible. More important is being able to control your behavior in reaction to an emotion, which is much easier to do (and easier to teach). Regardless, it is, in fact, possible to control your emotions (Buddhists have been doing it for centuries).

A) Controlling one responses TO emotion is a FAR cry from controlling emotion.
B) 'simple conscious decision' is a rather key phrase in that objection. The article presents the control of emotion as far simpler, easier, and more reliable than it actually is. For as long as Buddhist (and other) traditions have been teaching the control of emotion, they've also been dedicating large portions of their lives to the study and practice of that control.

edit: although there is one line in that abstract that seriously concerns me:
"This review [...] characterizes emotion in terms of response tendencies."

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tedronai View Post
A) Controlling one responses TO emotion is a FAR cry from controlling emotion.
B) 'simple conscious decision' is a rather key phrase in that objection. The article presents the control of emotion as far simpler, easier, and more reliable than it actually is. For as long as Buddhist (and other) traditions have been teaching the control of emotion, they've also been dedicating large portions of their lives to the study and practice of that control.

edit: although there is one line in that abstract that seriously concerns me:
"This review [...] characterizes emotion in terms of response tendencies."
It's difficult to objectively characterize emotion in any other way, as self-report simply isn't reliable (for any number of reasons). That said, how would an emotion be out of control without affecting behavior? In both academic literature and in personal experience, when emotions become out of control they produce behavioral effects; ergo, controlling one's emotions is controlling the behavioral response, and vice versa. Even in practical speech this becomes clear, as people talk about controlling emotions in behavioral terms (e.g: "get a hold of yourself") Again, I never said doing so was easy, simply that it is doable. Furthermore, if you care to re-read my previous post, I said:

Quote:
I think I would replace it with something like "don't let your emotions emotions control your actions" - remember to adjust your behavior both on the emotions you feel and the facts that you know.
Thereby arguing that yes, Principle 3 is flawed, and there is a better way to phrase the essence of what the author appears to be communicating.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tedronai View Post
Personally, I'd be attacking the core premise itself, that emotions are directly (or near enough) controllable by simple conscious decision.
I thought this, too, but 15 minutes of google-fu failed to bring me any factual support so I decided not to make psychological claims like that.




 

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