Whenever I think of a podcast I feel annoyance. Whenever assigned to listen to a podcast I cringe. I don't like the sound of most peoples voices, especially when it's the deciding factor in whether or not I finish the entire thing. Podcasts in my mind are considered pedantic. Forcing myself to listen to Invisibilia for this blog reflection, I found myself relaxing and and finding the topic they were discussing engrossing: Emotions.
The questions posed in the podcast are: where do emotions come from and can we control them?
The immediate answer for me was emotions are neurological triggers in the brain and no you can't control emotions.
There are two stories about these two questions through two different people. Both were taught that emotions were a burden that you have to tame them. That is a widely held point of view on emotions as well as the thought that they arise through basic needs of the human race for survival like lust or sadness.
This podcast says that we're wrong. Everything we've been taught about emotions is ultimately incorrect and that invalidity may end up effecting us in very negative ways.
It is explained through a court case in Minnesota where a car on highway lost control and crashed into a truck in the opposite side of the highway. The car held a family with two children one of them had died. The trucker saw this child's mangled body and was traumatized. He couldn't go to work for months leaving him mentally crippled and he would later sue the family who had lost their child due to emotional distress.
This man's distress was due to the fact that he believed the accident was his fault. When he went to a doctor they told him that emotions happen to you. You are a puppet of these neurological triggers. Because this conclusion was drawn amongst other reasons the trucker was able to sue the family.
A psychologist by the name of Lisa explains how this court case was all wrong. Emotions aren't simply stimulus to the brain she explains it's deeper than that, and because of this you can control more than your reaction to emotions. You can control emotions themselves.
HOW IS THAT POSSIBLE???
Turns out emotions are the result of the brain simplifying introspection within the body for your convenience. If the brain did not simplify introspection then our brains would experience an overload of sensations.
Emotions are subjective to concepts. The concepts that your brain matches with certain feelings and actions are learned from observing other people at a young age. One thing means the other thing because your brain looks for previous experiences that are similar to the ones you're experiencing in real time, and from there decides what you're feeling now.
That means your emotions aren't hardwired. We hold responsibility over our emotions because we can identify concepts and their linkage to our emotions and then decide whether to change them or not.
|me harnessing that emotional pw|
|Warhol and Sedgwick|