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In fact, the scientific community is in the process of redefining what a human being is, including the definition of a human being. We are beginning to recognize that we are not all just machines with programmed minds, but we are beings who have their own thoughts, memories, and feelings.
In this sense, our minds are not isolated in a box, but rather we are all part of a vast, interconnected network of minds. As our understanding of the human brain continues to develop, we may begin seeing similarities between the way that our minds work and the way that other mammals operate. For example, people with autism may well have a high IQ, but a high IQ doesn’t necessarily mean they have autism.
The idea that our minds are not isolated, and that we are interconnected, goes back to the days when we used to think that being a brain was all that mattered. As we have learned and accepted that our minds are much more than just brains, our minds seem less like boxes and more like networks of interconnected minds.
Psychology tells us that we have a wide range of mental functions that affect our behavior, emotions, and reactions. For example, if you are diagnosed with autism, most people would say that you have a “high IQ.” That is not to say that you are necessarily autistic. People with autism often have high IQs but are not necessarily autistic. But most of us would agree that if you have a high IQ and you are autistic, you are probably autistic.
As I mentioned in “The Three Levels of Self-Awareness?” I’m a big fan of self-awareness, and I think it’s one of the main reasons people get so excited about computers and online communities. The ability to self-reflect, ask yourself hard questions, reflect on our emotional and physical reactions, and consider the choices we make in regards to how we behave is an important component in our ability to be more productive, successful, and happy.
I like this quote from Dr. Robert Sapolsky: “All of the best writers and thinkers I’ve known have, at one time or another, been a bit of a screw-up.” Because that’s probably a better way to put it.
Sapolsky is right, and I think that we all need to take a closer look at those screw-ups. We cannot expect everyone to be able to self-reflect and ask themselves questions that we ourselves might not be able to answer. I personally think that it’s healthy to think about the questions we don’t know the answers to, and I think it’s a healthy reminder to be able to ask ourselves all the questions we have.
I feel like Sapolsky is right in saying that we all need to take a closer look at those screw-ups. Of course, I just like the way he says that. I don’t think it’s a good way to put that. However, I do feel like the concept is right. We all have screw-ups, and some of these screw-ups come from things we don’t even know about ourselves.
The problem is that when we have these experiences, we tend to project them onto ourselves. I have this tendency of seeing myself as a victim of anything I don’t know about myself. Like my parents, or my ex-boyfriend, or whatever. It’s an excuse I make up to myself that keeps me living on the edge. However, I want to point out that I think this is the exact same kind of projection that happens when we talk about, say, cancer.
I have this kind of projection problem. I see myself as a victim of cancer. You know, the one who dies from it. Or the one who has a bunch of treatments and is put on a long term plan to die from cancer. I think it is the exact same way that my parents ended up seeing themselves as victims of their parents’ drug addiction.