Changing Our Consciousness
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Help us turn ideas into action.
We are currently focusing our fundraising efforts on our visionary groundbreaking educational initiative, Emotional Imprint™.
Emotional Imprint™ seeks to educate, motivate, and enrich students by teaching them to imagine the emotional experience of others. With your help, they can become engaged and empowered citizens of our country and the world. Thank you!
Please consider a tax-deductible contribution to support Emotional Imprint™.
CHANGING OUR CONSCIOUSNESS is a non-profit organization that develops theoretical, methodological and educational tools to understand and mitigate intergroup conflict. By developing emotional literacy – the capacity to view the world through others' eyes – we facilitate dialogue between people of different thoughts, beliefs and communication styles, counter prejudice and stigma, and transform education.
Become part of the next innovation in human understanding.
Why do bad people like “them” want to hurt good people like “us”?
I cringe whenever I hear the media discuss, as they do all the time, motivations for behaviors. Why did The Tsarnaev brothers plant bombs at the marathon? What motivated Adam Lanza to shoot 20 first graders? Why do some Israelis mistreat the Palestinians and/or why do some Palestinians want to wipe Israel of the face of the earth? Why do bad people like “them” want to hurt good people like “us”? Somebody make them stop!!
As desperate as we are to understand the emotional experience of others, that’s how desperately our society is moving away from attempts to reach out and make that kind of difficult-but-possible effort. The new Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders is evidence of that retreat. For example, “bereavement” is now included as a mental disorder that can be diagnosed and treated using medical insurance. That might not be so bad – many people who suffer losses struggle to understand their complex emotions and think through the problems of moving on. But this comes at a time when psychiatrists are taught to frame every dynamic constellation in terms of mental illness, and treat it with drugs. A bereaved person will be asked, in 15 minutes, if they’re sleeping, eating, suicidal, homicidal, hearing voices and thinking clearly, and will be prescribed a antidepressant, a tranquilizer, and/or an antipsychotic. Oh yes, and sorry for your loss.
There ARE ways of reading, and responding appropriately and effectively, to the complex dynamics and communications of other human beings. I know because I’ve been studying them for 35 years. That kind of “reading” is just as complex, and just as possible, as reading Chinese or reading Shakespeare. But you have to understand that foreign language first, not just will it to happen.
Flying to the moon can be done too. It’s called Rocket Science. You start with arithmetic and continue through algebra and calculus and physics and engineering and many groups working together to design, build and fly those rockets. Meanwhile, when we wonder how to stop terrorists or how to motivate rich people or poor people to change dynamics that exist at the core of their being, all we seem to be able to do is pray, pontificate, and criticize leaders who don’t know what to do either.
Human Understanding IS Rocket Science. That’s how hard it is. And that’s how possible it is. Human nature won’t be changed with indignation combined with new and improved pharmaceuticals.