04w07:4 Happy Valentine's Day

by timothy. 0 Comments


This is your brain in love | Carlene Bauer
“So here are the basic characteristics: You lose a sense of self, your edges become porous — this person almost invades, but it’s a very pleasant invasion. Then there are mood swings — real giddiness and ecstasy when things are going well, but if you don’t hear from him via e-mail or phone, there’s despair. But the main characteristic for me is obsessively thinking about the person. When I was interviewing people to put into the fMRI machine, the first thing I asked them was how long they’d been in love, because I wanted them really crazy — I wanted them in the beginning stages, because these machines are expensive, they’re time-consuming for everybody. So they had to be absolutely nuts…”

I get a kick out of you | The Economist
“[…] Understanding the neurochemical pathways that regulate social attachments may help to deal with defects in people’s ability to form relationships. All relationships, […] rely on an ability to create and maintain social ties. Defects can be disabling, and become apparent as disorders such as autism and schizophrenia—and, indeed, as the serious depression that can result from rejection in love. […] For a start, a relatively small area of the human brain is active in love, compared with that involved in, say, ordinary friendship. ‘It is fascinating to reflect’, the pair conclude, ‘that the face that launched a thousand ships should have done so through such a limited expanse of cortex.’ […] Parts of the brain that are love-bitten include the one responsible for gut feelings, and the ones which generate the euphoria induced by drugs such as cocaine. So the brains of people deeply in love do not look like those of people experiencing strong emotions, but instead like those of people snorting coke. ”

Good Vibrations | Judith Warner
An article about Love and Hope, reviewing the work of Helen Fischer, described in the articles above, and Jerome Groopman’s The Anatomy of Hope : ” ‘There is an authentic biology of hope,’ Groopman writes. ‘Researchers are learning that a change in mind-set has the power to alter neurochemistry. Belief and expectation — the key elements of hope — can block pain by releasing the brain’s endorphins and enkephalins, mimicking the effects of morphine. In some cases, hope can also have important effects on fundamental physiological processes like respiration, circulation, and motor function. During the course of an illness, then, hope can be imagined as a domino effect, a chain reaction in which each link makes improvement more likely. It changes us profoundly in spirit and in body.’ NOTE: This article requires registration. Use login: ‘ajreader@artsjournal.com’ password: ‘access’ (courtesy of http://www.artsjournal.com)”

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emailed by Timothy on Saturday 14 February 2004 @ 3:42 PM

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