New articles:

Neurotransmitters are a confidence game:

Neurotransmitters are psychological snake oil. A confidence game pop-psychologists play with their audience. There is frankly no convincing story of human behaviour made more comprehensible by talking about dopamine.

Full article at bottom of email

The origin of insight:

Lightbulb moments are one crucial key to creativity, and though they appear elusive, there are many ways to encourage the happy accidents that bring them into being: we must bring together the unfamiliar and the familiar.

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Why no one ever takes your advice:

The psychology of changing habits tells us that the window to make change is quite small---resistance to change is the hallmark of a process to change, and the advice to others more frequently acts as an obstacle. Learning the shape of the window is the key.

States of Mind:

There is no such thing as an 'altered' state of mind. Or rather, all states of mind are ones that are altered. Preferring the familiar ones provides a dangerous sense of safety, and avoiding the profound ones obscures some of the greatest benefits.

Highlights from the Marginalia:

Science has always leaned into its rituals:: "Experimental results showed that--contrary to a popular assumption--the reasoning skills of the scientists were not significantly different from those of nonscientists he scientists in this study appeared to be strongly inclined toward early speculation with relatively little experimentation ... Both of these phenomena--the apparent penchant for quick speculation and tenacious fidelity to a hypothesismhave been observed as relatively common phenomena in the scientific culture"

Ethical astrology: "Astrological prediction, wielded gently and skillfully, can help to “spot the meaning and the movement [going forward] by looking to what is different,”

Ernst Junger and his war-time diaries and a descent into magic: "Jünger comes uncannily close to Jung throughout the book: he records strange omens and premonitions, claims that certain generals of his acquaintance are imbued with the power of prophecy, records strange synchronicities and deploys obscure alchemical metaphors. As the diaries go on and Germany’s fortunes worsen, the magical element begins to predominate."


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Warm regards,

Dorian | btrmt.


This week's article selection: Neurotransmitters are a confidence game

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