Bouquet #7: Eclectic Mind Food (Faking, Changing minds, Awe, Pet's Death, Evil vs Stupidity)

Week's Five - Why women feel like imposters, Changing minds is tough, Awe leads to happiness, Handling pet's death, Evil vs Stupidity #DrishtikoneNewsletter

Bouquet #7: Eclectic Mind Food (Faking, Changing minds, Awe, Pet's Death, Evil vs Stupidity)
Photo by Sarah Dorweiler / Unsplash
Went to the Witchery in Galveston, TX.  This was one of the items on the shelf.
Photo by Color Crescent / Unsplash
“Love takes off the masks we fear we cannot live without and know we cannot live within.” ― James Baldwin

1. Faking it

The impostor phenomenon or syndrome has been around for long.  In early 70s, an assistant professor at Oberlin College named Clance found that many women, even when successful, thought they were not good enough.  So much so that even though they passed an exam, they would think they had failed.  When she talked to her colleague, Suzanne Imes, she found that Imes had the same experience.  They both then talked to over hundred and fifty “successful” women: students and faculty members at several universities; professionals in fields including law, nursing, and social work over five years.  They wrote a paper - “The Impostor Phenomenon in High Achieving Women: Dynamics and Therapeutic Intervention.”

The paper was rejected initially, but it attained a cult status.  Over the years they realized that the feeling of being an imposter is so overwhelming that the impostor begins to do everything possible to prevent being discovered in her self-perceived deficiencies.

Why Everyone Feels Like They’re Faking It
The concept of Impostor Syndrome has become ubiquitous. Critics, and even the idea’s originators, question its value.

2. Changing Minds with Facts

Julie Beck wrote an article "This Article Won’t Change Your Mind".  The fundamental question she asked was:

“What would get someone to change their mind about a false belief that is deeply tied to their identity?”

Facts alone cannot change people's mind.  

Once people are attached to an identity, then they can be manipulated.

This Article Won’t Change Your Mind
The facts on why facts alone can’t fight false beliefs.

3. Awe and Happiness

Having gratitude helps one.  In fact, gratitude is strongly and consistently associated with greater happiness

Giving thanks can make you happier - Harvard Health

Awe happens when you realize that the existence is far bigger than what your mind can fathom.  That in itself is enough of a meditation.

Dacher Keltner writes in his book "Awe" based on two decades of research about the benefits of awe.

Far from being an undefinable caprice, awe, to Keltner, is a panacea, an evolutionary tool that holds the key to humanity’s capacity to flourish in groups. On an average day, a person might come to a place like Point Reyes without feeling anything more profound than a slight unburdening of the soul. But if you lean into that feeling even for just a moment, the benefits can be manifold. Proponents of this new science believe that experiencing awe may be an essential pathway to physical and mental well-being. By taking us out of ourselves and expanding our sense of time, it counteracts the self-focus and narcissism that is the root of so much modern disenchantment. To experience awe, to fully open ourselves up to it, helps us to live happier, healthier lives.

Once you become part of the larger whole, your sense of self-importance and narcissism.

How Awe Can Change Our Lives For The Better
A new field of psychology has begun to quantify an age-old intuition: Feeling awe is good for us.

4. Mourning a Pet's death

In today's world, as people increasingly have pets at home, a time comes for many where they have to consider euthanasia.  And that creates many threads of feelings.  From feeling like a murderer, guilt and shame.

Coming to terms with and mourning a pet's death.

Why Mourning a Pet Can Be Harder Than Grieving for a Person
Disenfranchised grief refers to losses that society doesn’t fully appreciate or ignores. This makes it harder to mourn, at least in public.

5. Evil vs Stupidity

You can fight what is obvioously evil but how wll you fight stupidity?

Villains in comic books and action movies are known and can be fought against. But stupidity is a different problem. We are more tolerant of it and it's hard to defeat. When confronted with facts, a stupid person will not accept them and can become angry.

Bonhoeffer’s “theory of stupidity”: We have more to fear from stupid people than evil ones
Bonhoeffer’s “theory of stupidity” posits that we have more to fear from stupidity than evil. The latter is easier to defeat than the former.

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