What do science and play have in common?


TED 2008 – Jill Bolte Taylor: Neuroanatomist

  I woke up this morning and was synching my ipod with my computer when i noticed that there was a TED talk by a neuroanatomist on my podcast subscription, being a biology student i was curious to check it out immediately ( remembering the a previous interesting talk by a neuroscientist). For twenty minutes i was in a state of …. well i can’t sort of describe it perfectly – this is one of the best talks that I’ve listened to with so much attention that i was oblivious to what was happening around. I would definitely recommend this talk to anybody and everybody.

Are you in control of your happiness?

I’ve glanced through several self help books (for an assignment!) that are supposed to help their readers live a more happy life. Believe me when i say that more or less they stress on the point that you should be able to control your own happiness. Simple isn’t it? But then apart from the philosophical explanation if you’re not yet satisfied with the idea of being to control your own happiness now there is a scientific one. brainresearch paper in the 23rd November issue of Science has shown the reward centers of the brain (i.e. which make you feel happy, giving you a sense of accomplishment) work with a Social awareness rationale meaning that the reward that you feel is regulated by what a neighbor receives or does not receive.To make things simpler, it suggests that a person “really” feels happy by comparing himself to his peers. Having something in itself does not trigger the reward center of the brain but rather the awareness that somebody else does not have it does. Now there is no reason to feel defensive about it…infact such is the nature of competitive selection by which evolution acts. This i consider as an evidence to prove that infact all living beings are ‘wired’ to self improvise or perish. looking at it from a non-philosophical point of view the existence of organisms that cause an imbalance in the delicate relationship between the resources available and its consumers are to be destined for extinction. A simple explanation for this would be that any single non-competitive life form would pose a threat to an entire population and there must be eliminated for the rest to survive.But still what else can be learnt from this finding, with a tinch of philosophy – yes probably controlling your happiness would deinitely make your living better at the cost of bringing down a delicate balance between life & extinction 😉