Emotional brains ‘physically different’ to rational ones

Researchers at Monash University have found physical differences in the brains of people who respond emotionally to others’ feelings, compared to those who respond more rationally, in a study published in the journal NeuroImage.

The work, led by Robert Eres from the University’s School of Psychological Sciences, pinpointed correlations between grey matter density and cognitive and affective empathy. The study looked at whether people who have more brain cells in certain areas of the brain are better at different types of empathy.

“People who are high on affective empathy are often those who get quite fearful when watching a scary movie, or start crying during a sad scene. Those who have high cognitive empathy are those who are more rational, for example a clinical psychologist counselling a client,” Mr Eres said.

The researchers used voxel-based morphometry (VBM) to examine the extent to which grey matter density in 176 participants predicted their scores on tests that rated their levels for cognitive empathy compared to affective – or emotional – empathy.

The results showed that people with high scores for affective empathy had greater grey matter density in the insula, a region found right in the ‘middle’ of the brain. Those who scored higher for cognitive empathy had greater density in the midcingulate cortex – an area above the corpus callosum, which connects the two hemispheres of the brain.

“Taken together, these results provide validation for empathy being a multi-component construct, suggesting that affective and cognitive empathy are differentially represented in brain morphometry as well as providing convergent evidence for empathy being represented by different neural and structural correlates,” the study said.

The findings raise further questions about whether some kinds of empathy could be increased through training, or whether people can lose their capacity for empathy if they don’t use it enough.

“Every day people use empathy with, and without, their knowledge to navigate the social world,” said Mr Eres.

“We use it for communication, to build relationships, and consolidate our understanding of others.”

However, the discovery also raises new questions – like whether people could train themselves to be more empathic, and would those areas of the brain become larger if they did, or whether we can lose our ability to empathise if we don’t use it enough.

“In the future we want to investigate causation by testing whether training people on empathy related tasks can lead to changes in these brain structures and investigate if damage to these brain structures, as a result of a stroke for example, can lead to empathy impairments,” said Mr Eres.

Imagine an interaction of balls within the atmosphere all bouncing with one another. Connecting to different points within the space that could equate when connected as two or more gigantic monstrosities in battle. 

Or several small battles that seemingly no correlation, moving around in a sporadic motion.

I kind of miss being obsessed with things

I really envy people now who get really passionate about things–TV shows, video games, books, whatever. I mean, I was in some fandom or another up until probably a year and a half ago, just diving into things and letting it consume my life in some way or another (I will never forget you Mass Effect, or you FFIX, and I look at you with fondness and a modicum of embarrassment Monsters University). 

Not sure what happened. I think last year was the roughest year I ever had–my bipolar was rampant and I was desperately unhappy despite having a steady, decent game art job and being surrounded by some of the best friends I ever ended up making. There were circumstances here and there but nothing horrendous–I had it easier than most people I know. It correlates with the time my ability to obsess kind of dropped out of my life. 

Or…my ability to obsess over things that contributed positively to me, I guess. I wonder if the negativity in my life made it impossible for me to connect with “obsession”, or if my fall out with passionate fan connection contributed to my life becoming more negative. Say what you will about obsessing over certain media, take away the shitty fan-drama and you realize that a lot of it is actually just having found something you love and allowing that thing that brings you happiness to fill up some spaces. That’s okay with me. I like that. 

I guess it’s unhealthy in a lot of ways, and part of the reason I distanced myself from the idea of fandom and just liked thinking myself of someone who participated in fangirling was because people who got TOO passionate could also get mean about it. But… you know. There’s something nice about caring about something. 

Kind of just waiting for something to grab me like that again. 

why is there all this superstition around having a certain side of ur nostrils pierced??? a friends told me having your right nostril pierced means ur gay + another person just told me having your right nostril pierced means youre a prostitute…… how do the two correlate having ur right nostril pierced and being gay/a prostitute i cannot make sense of this

Weight is not a correlation to beauty or self worth. Something I wish my mother taught me so it wouldn’t have taken 21 years to start to figure out for myself.

Questions Tag!

alexbookpages tagged me to answer these questions! Thanks cupcake!! <3 <3

1. Why did you choose your URL?

My “main” blog is sparkysparkyboomwoman and that’s where I follow/like from so I wanted there to be a correlation between that blog name and my book blog’s name so you’d know they were both the same person :)

2. What is your middle name?

Elaine. And I like it better than my first name.

3. If you could own a fairytale/fictional pet, what would it be?

A pegasus! It’s a horse! AND it flies!!

4. Favorite color?

Green. Like the color of moss. In Washington. Where I wish I lived. Because it’s so goddamn green over there.

5. Favorite Song?

My consistently favorite all-time song is “The Story” by Brandi Carlile. My current favorite is “Pay Dearly” by Johhnyswim. It’s smooth af.

6. What are your top 5 fandoms?

Community, Once Upon A Time, Doctor Who, Percy Jackson, and Lord of the Rings.

7. Why do you love tumblr?

Because you guys love the same things I love and don’t judge me for it. You guys get it. I can gush/rant about anything and somebody will be there to rant and rave right back. And I’ve met some of the sweetest people in the world on here, I’m so lucky!

8. Tag your tumblr crushes! They answer the questions too.

traveltheworldwithaflaskoftea / pocahontis-little-book-nook / lovelyenchantedwords / alibraryismyparadise / poeticpolkadots / bookswithbazzi / pollyandbooks


[…] Q Confucius is the latest development along this creative trajectory. The exhibition makes use of ‘Confucius’, a symbol representative of Eastern moral and political thinking, to explore the question of how humanity might, in an era of technological development and rapidly evolving social organisations and means of interaction, progress together and come to coexist in harmony, both with fellow humans and with Nature, and indeed whether this is possible at all. These special correlations connect the theme of this exhibition, which at first sight might seem abstract, to everyday life experience, and provoke public thinking and debate on related phenomena and questions.  […]    

Q-Confucius No. 2

Zhan Huan, 2011

anonymous asked:

Actually the reason they are so sexual is because of their intelligence, but yeah maybe the calf mortality plays into it a bit

As far as I’m aware there is no inherit correlation between sex and intelligence. Elephants, for instance, are within the same intelligence gradient as dolphins however they only have sex during heat/musth. Evolutionarily speaking all behavior must be adaptive in one way or another so the amount of sex they have must be for a reason. as far as I’m aware the only adaptive benefits of increased sex are more offspring or strengthening group ties and considering how most cetaceans choose mates outside the pod, I’m thinking the reason they have sex so much is because their offspring have low survival rates so they HAVE to have a strong urge to make more.
Sorry this is kind of a mess btw I’m doing errands but evolutionary ethology is my THANG

“national coming out day is in october and dan and phil’s book comes out in october. are they trying to tell us something???!?!????” no. no they’re not. literally don’t. there is no correlation. you’re reaching incredibly far. stop.
Hogwarts Houses Correspond To Real Psychological Personality Traits, New Study Finds

Which Hogwarts house do you belong in? Turns out this question may mean more than just what your childhood fantasies were, because according to a new study, Hogwarts house sorting corresponds to psychologically recognized personality traits. And yes, this was a real study. Scientist care about Harry Potter, too. 

In the study, which is due to be published in the journal Personality and Individual Difference, researchers looked at the sorting quiz on the official Harry Potter site Pottermore and gauged personality measures among fans who had undergone sorting. Specifically, the researchers were looking for what are referred to as the “Big Five” personality traits — extraversion, agreeableness, conscientiousness, neuroticism, and openness — as well as the need to belong, the need for cognition, and the so-called Dark Triad traits. That’s a real psychological term, by the way; the Dark Triad consists of narcissism, Machiavellianism, and psychopathy

Unsurprisingly, researchers found a positive correlation between participants sorted into Slytherin and those Dark Triad traits — and is it any wonder, given the house’s dark history? They also found a strong link between Ravenclaws and the “need for cognition,” which makes sense given that Ravenclaws are known for intelligence. The researchers expected that they might also find a link between those sorted into Gryffindor (known for bravery) and being extroverted and open, and between Hufflepuffs (known for loyalty) and the need to belong, but no correlation was found. 

Still, the authors write in the study, the “findings suggest that fiction can reflect real underlying personality dimensions.”

Beyond validating everyone who believes in the Hogwarts houses as real, important identity markers, this study also has interesting implications for how we view fiction. “Research shows that fiction may be a primary source for peoples’ beliefs about their world,” Laura Crysel, an assistant professor of psychology at Stetson University and lead author on the study, told Stetson University Today. In other words, fiction isn’t just make believe. It helps us explain and categorize the real world, and changes our perceptions of it. Which is probably why science has also certified that Harry Potter makes you a better person.

Harry Potter forever!


Small Press Expo Announces Michael DeForge, Gemma Correll and Noah Van Sciver to Celebrate SPX’s 21st Birthday

June 30, 2015

SPX is pleased to announce 21st Century creators Michael DeForge, Gemma Correll and Noah Van Sciver as guests at SPX 2016. This is in addition to the previously announced creators of the current century Kate Beaton, Luke Pearson and Noelle Stevenson.

SPX 2016 takes place on Saturday and Sunday, September 19-20, and will have over 650 creators, 280 exhibitor tables and 22 programming slots to entertain, enlighten and introduce attendees to the amazing world of independent and small press comics.

Having recently designed an Adventure Time title card and running an active Patreon account, Michael DeForge represents the modern cartoonist and working freelancer. DeForge marches onward in 2015, with SPX privileged in seeing the debut of his Koyama Press publications, the graphic novel Dressing and Lose #7, the latest in his award winning comics series. 2015 also saw the release of the collection of two of his Patreon works in On Topics from Breakdown Press, as well as First Year Healthy from D&Q. His singular vision and design-influenced style of storytelling make each new work instantly recognizable and remain with readers well after they have put the book back on the shelf.

Illustrator, writer, artist Gemma Correll rounds out the guest list with her succinct cartoons and whimsical books. Correll’s The Worrier’s Guide to Life hits stands this year from Andrews McMeel while A Pug’s to Guide to Etiquette is still making readers’ sides ache from laughter. With a pen line easily suited to many audiences, Correll also celebrates illustrating new children’s books this year with Pig and Pug, written by Lynne Berry, from Simon & Schuster and Being a Girl, written by Hayley Long, from Hot Key Books.

Noah Van Sciver continues to create new work as the “cartographer of his generation” (Paul Buhle, TCJ). A true powerhouse, Van Sciver has one-two-three-FOUR new books out this year: Saint Cole and Fante Bukowski from Fantagraphics, My Hot Date from Kilgore Books, and Cheer Up from Hic and Hoc. Van Sciver utilizes the aesthetics of underground and alternative cartoonists before him like Crumb, Clowes and Bagge while speaking straight from the heart of today’s disenchanted and disenfranchised youth.

Small Press Expo (SPX) is the preeminent showcase for the exhibition of independent comics, graphic novels, and alternative political cartoons. SPX is a registered 501©3 nonprofit that brings together more than 650 artists and publishers to meet their readers, booksellers, and distributors each year. Graphic novels, mini comics, and alternative comics will all be on display and for sale by their authors and illustrators. The expo includes a series of panel discussions and interviews with this year’s guests.

The Ignatz Award is a festival prize held every year at SPX recognizing outstanding achievement in comics and cartooning, with the winners chosen by attendees at the show.

As in previous years, profits from the SPX will go to support the SPX Graphic Novel Gift Program, which funds graphic novel purchases for public and academic libraries, as well as the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund (CBLDF), which protects the First Amendment rights of comic book readers and professionals.
Rent prices are soaring
Rents in April were 4% higher than a year before, according to a report from Zillow. That's the fastest increase in two years, outpacing home prices which rose by 3%, the report showed.
By Kathryn Vasel

Rental affordability is getting worse, and it doesn’t look like it will be improving anytime soon. “This is here to stay,” said Svenja Gudell, senior director of economic research at Zillow. “We will continue to see rental increases, and affordability will worsen before it gets better.”

🎈🎈🎈🎈 I found a few more of the balloon packs with art from @gemmacorrell @pacolli @katebingburt @paulwindle @sorrysorrytown & @mitchellkuga so I put them in the shop. this is the last chance for FRIEND PARTY series one before it’s gone forever. don’t miss it if you’re a fan of any of these awesome artists or just of balloons in general! 🎈🎈🎈🎈🎈

get two of each here for $12!