Does Power Corrupt? Absolutely Not

Today, while surfing the internet, I came upon this article written by KATE PICKERT for the Time Magazine. Indeed, contrary to the famous “Lucifer effect” and the popular saying that “absolute power corrupts absolutely”, here’s an article that shows the bright side of power. I submitted it in Digg and now am publishing it here in my blog:

Power breeds competence, not corruption, according to a new study in the May issue of Psychological Science. The study, a collaboration between U.S. and Dutch researchers, finds that if people feel powerful in their roles, they may be less likely to make on-the-job errors “” like administering the wrong medication to a patient. Contrary to conventional wisdom, the study suggests that people at the bottom of the workplace totem pole don’t end up there for lack of ability, but rather that being low and powerless in a hierarchy leads to more mistakes. It’s a finding that surprised even the study’s authors. “I’ll be totally honest. When we started this research,” says Adam Galinsky, a co-author and a social psychology professor at the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University, “we first had the hypothesis that maybe power might impair [cognitive] functioning.”

“This research has a lot of direct implications for such things as whether power corrupts,” says Galinsky, who collaborated with researchers from VU University Amsterdam and Radboud University Nijmegan.

(…)

To read the rest of the artcile go here.
To digg it, please go here.

Vatican: It’s OK to believe in aliens

Today while browsing through Digg, I found this curious article written by By ARIEL DAVID for the Associated Press

VATICAN CITY – Believing that the universe may contain alien life does not contradict a faith in God, the Vatican’s chief astronomer said in an interview published Tuesday.

The Rev. Jose Gabriel Funes, the Jesuit director of the Vatican Observatory, was quoted as saying the vastness of the universe means it is possible there could be other forms of life outside Earth, even intelligent ones.

“How can we rule out that life may have developed elsewhere?” Funes said. “Just as we consider earthly creatures as ‘a brother,’ and ‘sister,’ why should we not talk about an ‘extraterrestrial brother’? It would still be part of creation.”

In the interview by the Vatican newspaper L’Osservatore Romano, Funes said that such a notion “doesn’t contradict our faith” because aliens would still be God’s creatures. Ruling out the existence of aliens would be like “putting limits” on God’s creative freedom, he said.

The interview, headlined “The extraterrestrial is my brother,” covered a variety of topics including the relationship between the Roman Catholic Church and science, and the theological implications of the existence of alien life.

To read the rest of the article, please go here.

The Orgasmic Mind: The Neurological Roots of Sexual Pleasure

Today in Digg, I came across this very interesting article published in Scientific American by Martin Portner :



“Achieving sexual climax requires a complex conspiracy of sensory and psychological signals””and the eventual silencing of critical brain areas.

Key Concepts about the Principles of Pleasure:

* Sexual desire and orgasm are subject to various influences on the brain and nervous system, which controls the sex glands and genitals.

* The ingredients of desire may differ for men and women, but researchers have revealed some surprising similarities. For example, visual stimuli spur sexual stirrings in women, as they do in men.

* Achieving orgasm, brain imaging studies show, involves more than heightened arousal. It requires a release of inhibitions engineered by shutdown of the brain’s center of vigilance in both sexes and a widespread neural power failure in females.

To read the rest of this article, please go here.

Today’s Question by Aart Hilal

What you would do when you will know that your life will end after 5 day?

So far, I lived my life fully, I made my mistakes, but I honored the miracle of being alive. I it happens that I will die in five days, I would change nothing that I do � except, of course, for making some phone calls to say good bye to people that I love. Other than that, I would like to die alive � because I know people who already died but they still behave like living people. They died because they allowed their dreams to be destroyed.

Quote of the Day

By Paulo Coelho

God always offers us a second chance in life.
(By the river Piedra I sat Down and Wept)

Welcome to Share with Friends – Free Texts for a Free Internet

Is it wise to be smart?

Today, while browsing the electronic pages of the New York Times, I found this interesting editorial

The Cost of Smarts
By Verlyn Klinkenborg

Research on animal intelligence always makes me wonder just how smart humans are. Consider the fruit-fly experiments described in Carl Zimmer’s piece in the Science Times on Tuesday. Fruit flies who were taught to be smarter than the average fruit fly tended to live shorter lives. This suggests that dimmer bulbs burn longer, that there is an advantage in not being too terrifically bright.

Intelligence, it turns out, is a high-priced option. It takes more upkeep, burns more fuel and is slow off the starting line because it depends on learning “” a gradual process “” instead of instinct. Plenty of other species are able to learn, and one of the things they’ve apparently learned is when to stop.

Is there an adaptive value to limited intelligence? That’s the question behind this new research. I like it. Instead of casting a wistful glance backward at all the species we’ve left in the dust I.Q.-wise, it implicitly asks what the real costs of our own intelligence might be. This is on the mind of every animal I’ve ever met.

Every chicken that looks at you sideways “” which is how they all look at you “” is really saying what Thoreau said less succinctly: you are endeavoring to solve the problem of a livelihood by a formula more complicated than the problem itself. Thoreau himself would not dispute that he was hoping to recover the chicken’s point of view. He went to Walden Pond “to remember well his ignorance.”

Research on animal intelligence also makes me wonder what experiments animals would perform on humans if they had the chance. Every cat with an owner, for instance, is running a small-scale study in operant conditioning. I believe that if animals ran the labs, they would test us to determine the limits of our patience, our faithfulness, our memory for terrain. They would try to decide what intelligence in humans is really for, not merely how much of it there is. Above all, they would hope to study a fundamental question: Are humans actually aware of the world they live in? So far the results are inconclusive.

This editorial refers to the following article : Lots of Animals Learn, but Smarter Isn’t Better

Worldometers – World Statistics Updated in Real-Time

Just found this very interesting list of statistics in Digg today.
This list up-dates in real time.
Enjoy – http://www.worldometers.info/

Quote of the Day

By Paulo Coelho

The roller-coaster is my life;
life is a fast, dizzying game;
life is a parachute jump;
it’s taking chances, falling over
and getting up again;
it’s mountaineering;
it’s wanting to get to the very top of yourself
and feeling angry and dissatisfied
when you don’t manage it.
(Eleven Minutes)

Welcome to Share with Friends – Free Texts for a Free Internet

Happiness … is a warm gun?

Today, I came upon this interview in The New York Times with Dr. Gilbert, author of “Stumbling on Happiness”. This particular part of the interview caught my eye :

Professor Happiness: The interview
by Claudia Dreifus The New York Times

(…)

Q. DO MOST OF US HARBOR UNREASONABLE NOTIONS OF WHAT HAPPINESS IS?

A. Inaccurate, flawed ideas. Few of us can accurately gauge how we will feel tomorrow or next week. That’s why when you go to the supermarket on an empty stomach, you’ll buy too much, and if you shop after a big meal, you’ll buy too little.

Another factor that makes it difficult to forecast our future happiness is that most of us are rationalizers. We expect to feel devastated if our spouse leaves us or if we get passed over for a big promotion at work.

But when things like that do happen, it’s soon, “She never was right for me,” or “I actually need more free time for my family.” People have remarkable talent for finding ways to soften the impact of negative events. Thus they mistakenly expect such blows to be much more devastating than they turn out to be.

Q. SO, IF WE DIDN’T HAVE THESE MECHANISMS, WOULD WE BE TOO DEPRESSED TO GO ON?

A. There may be something to that. People who are clinically depressed often seem to lack the ability to reframe events. That suggests that if the rest of us didn’t have this, we might be depressed as well.

(…)

http://www.iht.com/articles/2008/04/23/healthscience/22conv.php

Quote of the Day

By Paulo Coelho

The Man who defends his friends
is never overwhelmed by the storms of life;
he is strong enough to come through difficulties
and carry on.
(Manual of the Warrior of Light)

Welcome to Share with Friends – Free Texts for a Free Internet