Free Will (and deviant behavior)..
For many people, any understanding of what makes human beings tick will always require poetry.
But every startling stride made in the world of neuroscience suggests a less romantic notion of what makes us think, do, believe and perceive what we do.
For example, a small area of the brain called the insula was recently discovered to play a crucial role in understanding addiction. Studies showed that, in some cases, when this prune-sized region of the brain was damaged, smokers gave up cigarettes instantly.
Or look at the amygdala, an almond-shaped part of the brain that may be the key to unlocking the mechanics of depression, autism and a dozen other psychological disorders.
But as the study of the brain peels back the curtains to reveal the mechanics of anger, love, and even laughter, it also raises some uncomfortable questions -- How much choice do we really exert in the lives we lead? And how much of what we think and do is prescribed -- and predetermined -- by the makeup of our brains?
One of The Current's producers, Aaron Brindle, has been looking into these questions and he joined us in the studio.
Listen to the podcast, it is fascinating (scroll down to part 2):
In one case, a middle-aged man with a child with no history of sexual abuse snapped and went out to molest another child. They found a benign brain tumor was responsible for this deviant behavior.
Now, let's think about how hobbyists' brains are wired. Is it possible that one's sexual libido is on overdrive because of an underdeveloped brain? Are we victims of some brain abnormality causing us to engage in this "deviant" activity?
P.S. I feel this is going to be another great thread but let's keep it civil!!!
Last edited by General Gonad; 03-24-2007 at 11:04 AM.
It has become clearer over the past 100 years on research, starting with the mapping that Wilder Penfield did here in Montreal, that everybody's brains are wired differently, but do have strong similarities.
Originally Posted by General Gonad
I'm not sure if having an anomolous brain construct means excuses abhorrent or abberant behaviour, per se, although clearly in some extreme edge cases it does, and does explain a tendency towards certain deviant (in the 'deviation from the norm' use of the phrase) behaviours - be they sexual or addictive, auistic, what have you. I expect advances in hormonal and genetic research will lead to cures, although it is arguable that a cure for Ausperger's might lead us to less innovation in terms of technology - a large number of geeks I know fall into the autistic spectrum.
One need but wonder one's own sexual preferences or predilictions to realize that we do have variances one to the next - however, with 6 billion people on the planet, it would be folly to think of onself as unique.
So sure, there are nyphomaniacs on both sides of the SP equation, but they are rare. And yes, MERB would be a natural place where the confluence of such people is skewed above the normal rate of such things.
Last edited by YouVantOption; 03-24-2007 at 11:30 AM.