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Book: The wisdom paradox

  • Everything we know about the mind (personality, drive etc) is a property of the underlying brain.

    • People often don’t understand this as this is what the rejection of mind-body dualism ultimate entails.
    • Thought: Perhaps the brain operates on a more general abstraction? That is, an ability to acquire these traits through experience?
      • This doesn’t discount differences in ability to acuire traits
  • Neural darwinism: Competitive pressures in the brain causing pruning of underused neurons and growth of used.

  • The brain has different seasons.

  • Aging improves human competence and wisdom

  • Despite cognitive decline due to aging, competence can persist and even improve

  • Genius can be seen as extreme talent while wisdom can be seen as extreme competence.

  • One interesting example of the power of culture over the generative power of the human brain is that we can teach apes sign language but they can’t learn on their own.

    • Their brains are capable of using and understanding sign langauge but it required culture to come up with it.
  • People can differ in their mental resources/energy i.e. the resources that a person can pull when engaging in mental tasks.

  • Cortical workings show evidence of operating in a gradient.

    • Ex: Prefrontal Cortex, the frontmost part, is arranged such that the frontmost part is hierarchically the top with subcomponents backward operating hierarchically lower.
  • Many different aspects of the mind such as planning, empathy, impulse-control seem to be packaged together and are correlated together in many people.

  • The ability to penetrate other people’s minds begins with an interest in other people’s minds.

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Wisdom, Pattern Recognition, Language, Prewired, Human Memory, Pattern Expansion, Expertise, Attractors, Knowledge, Prefrontal Cortex, Memory Locality,