The operational definition of intelligence is a consistent display of appropriate behavior. Behind the behavior is a mental construal of how the world works. Failing to comprehend the environment invariably has negative consequences. In the instance of humans on planet Earth, the diagnosis is clear and the outcome apparent. These creatures face impending extinction and are taking much other life out with them.
The mind is a symbolic processor, incessantly shuffling concepts. All that we experience or know are nothing more than the play of concepts.
The mind and body are entangled. Changes to the brain can influence mental function. But, more than anything, it is the power of the mind that controls health. That’s true even for birds.
Close friends are held dear by empathy. Caring is the hallmark of emotional stature. Such emotional mush is an afterthought at best to a business owner. The cool analytics of profit enraptures a capitalist. Hence the regularity of public relations fiascos created by CEOs who display their love of lucre over the cares of employees or customers. This stark dichotomy between compassion and capitalism is seated within the brain.
Teleology posits that natural phenomena exist for a purpose; that is, nature has goals. Ancient Greek philosopher Plato (423 – 347 BCE) was a dyed-in-the-wool teleologist. But since the time of British natural philosopher Francis Bacon (1561 – 1626), empiricism supposedly trumped teleology in scientific circles. Scientific canon is that existential facts do not support purpose as intrinsic to the natural world. To that scientists agree, at least in concept. What they intuitively believe is something else.
Introspection is essential to mastering life. The quality of involvement in activity, and connections that come by interactions with others, cannot be assessed without careful self-reflection.
The mirror mechanism is a part of intelligence systems; stimulated when an animal acts or observes another performing the same action. Many animals have mirror mechanisms, including birds and primates. The mechanism provides the basis for empathy, as well as driving status-seeking.
It is an axiom of human psychology that choice of association both defines and describes a person. One’s choice of a pet says a lot about the person. The plethora of dog breeds provides a perfect opportunity to make a personal statement. Dog owners invariably do.
The “fight-or-flight” response to stress is well known. But human reaction to social stress has a somewhat different dynamic. Women have a “tend-and-befriend” response: an accommodating protective and friendly reaction. Men were long assumed to become aggressive under stress. But that tends to be a last resort, at least for those lacking anger issues. Instead, men also seek social support when stressed.
Object recognition is an essential aspect of life for all life. Some objects grab attention more than others. Sometimes people are confused with objects; the confusion being certain people being perceived as objects.