Intercultural Understanding and Empathy
From a very early age, babies have the ability to understand the minds of others and display empathy, compassion, and helpfulness that enables us to thrive in complex social groups.
Robin Dunbar, Clive Gamble & John Gowlett
The social brain that drives our behavior and contemporary culture is essentially the same brain that appeared with the earliest humans some 300,000 years ago.
Joseph Henrich; reviewed by Robert Twigger
Literacy does strange things to you, and mass literacy does strange things en masse. Did you know that literate people have worse facial recognition abilities than those who are illiterate? Or that in learning to read and write your corpus callosum (the cable if you like connecting your right and left hemisphere) will have grown thicker?
Joshua D. Greene
Our innate moral behavior evolved over millions of years to promote cooperation within our group. Each group has its own moral code, which provides a map for how individuals can live successfully within it. Our other innate tendency, to favor our group over all others, is something we need to understand and mitigate to address the existential challenges of our modern global society.
Jonanthan Haidt; reviewed by John Zada
We are without doubt living in an era of polarised thinking, marked by much bickering across social and political lines. But could positions of both side have roots in common moral foundations?
Moving Toward Conscious Evolution
Robert Ornstein and Paul Ehrlich
Over millions of years, our minds evolved with quick reflexes to deal with sudden threats, which makes long-term threats like pollution and overpopulation invisible to us. Our survival now requires that we consciously evolve a new mind and new perceptions to adapt.
Robert Ornstein and Paul Ehrlich; reviewed by John Zada
Psychologist Robert Ornstein and biologist Paul Ehrlich join forces to explain why the human race has reached its current perilous precipice. To sidestep the fate they say is now barreling towards us will require us to address our “empathy shortfall.”
Travel the Journey
The Heroic Imagination Project was founded by Dr. Philip Zimbardo, Professor Emeritus of Psychology at Stanford University. HIP is a research-based organization which provides knowledge, tools, strategies, and exercises to individuals and groups to help them to overcome the social and psychological forces which can keep them from taking effective action at crucial moments in their lives.