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Mike Cooper

I'm lovin' it Dave :/

A couple of juicy quotes from the transcript caught my eye:

GILBERT: Why is this remarkable talent hidden from our view? Why are we all surprised when people who lose a child or lose a job or lose their vision, a year or two later, are doing pretty darn well?

RAZ: Yeah. Yeah. I mean, yes. Right. Why? Like...

GILBERT: Well, I think there might be two reasons. First, the processes that enable us to be resilient and recover are often invisible. There are things our minds are doing behind the scenes. And because we don't see our minds doing them, we don't know that we're capable of it. The other possibility that philosophers and psychologists bandy about is that it's important that we not know this about ourselves.

And also:

GILBERT: Because happiness can be synthesized. Sir Thomas Browne wrote in 1642, I am the happiest man alive. I have that in me that can convert poverty to riches, adversity to prosperity. I am more invulnerable than Achilles. Fortune hath not one place to hit me. What kind of remarkable machinery does this have in his head?

Well, it turns out it's precisely the same remarkable machinery that all of us have. Human beings have something that we might think of as a psychological immune system, a system of cognitive processes - largely non-conscious cognitive processes - that help them change their views of the world so that they can feel better about the worlds in which they find themselves. Like Sir Thomas, you have this machine. Unlike Sir Thomas, you seem not to know it.

There, he's done it. He's discovered Flatland! Except: no, he's interpreted it at exactly 180 degrees from reality. Humans have an unconscious ability to filter bad experiences, distort memories, and convince themselves that they are happy and that everything is good - and this is a GREAT THING.

So basically, whatever happens, we'll all just carry on regardless like the unthinking idiots we are.


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