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The Darker Side Of Human Nature: 5 Psychology Findings Of The Mind

Por: María Isabel7 de octubre de 2021

Human beings are full of instincts, but not all of them are positive, there's still a darker side of human nature.

No question has caused greater doubts, nor that has justified so many individual and collective actions, than the conception of "human nature." Some philosophical or religious currents have affirmed that evil is in our intrinsic characteristic, while others affirm that our primal trait is goodness.

But our natural characteristics are diluted with those that arise from culture and our rational capacities until it becomes impossible to distinguish what makes us what we are.

To get around these labyrinths, it would be worthwhile to reflect on human nature based on one principle: we, too, are a product of nature. We may be the most eccentric of nature's creations, but we are, after all. That's why we also have so many positive traits, such as playfulness, for example.

However, hearing what psychology has to say about what is most unpleasant about contemporary human nature is enlightening. Neuroscientist and science writer Christian Jarrett put together some of these traits, which have been confirmed by psychology.

Here are his 5 findings that reveal the darkest side of human nature:

By nature... we see minorities as less than human

This rampant dehumanization was proven in a study using brain-scanning technology. Two psychologists observed the brain activity of Princeton University students as they viewed photos of people from various social strata and groups. Seeing those of higher "status" activated the medial prefrontal cortex - associated with emotional connections to others - while photos of homeless people or drug addicts did not.

Other studies have shown that people consider people, such as migrants or inhabitants of less developed countries, as "less evolved," which even happens to children who see children of another gender.

By nature... we are dogmatic

If we had a different nature, perhaps we would know how to demonstrate our disagreement with good arguments. The truth is that several classic studies have shown that people who firmly believe in something tend to ignore completely the elements that determine their position. Apparently, this has to do with the instinctive safeguarding of our sense of permanence.

By nature... we'd rather hurt ourselves than spend time with our thoughts

A peculiar study from 2014 proved that people can no longer just think or disconnect. In the test, 67% of men and 25% of women preferred to give themselves electric touches rather than spend 15 minutes in peaceful contemplation.

By nature... we are moral hypocrites

When we are not the ones doing something selfish -such as opting for the easier task and relegating the more difficult one to someone else- and instead we are the ones being played the trick, we become indignant as if we "wouldn't have been able to do it." We also tend to justify what we do by the conditions in which we live, but we are incapable of measuring with the same barometer what other people do.

By nature... we are attracted to people with shady personality traits

Evidence suggests that both men and women are attracted to narcissists, psychopaths, and Machiavellian individuals - and even those who have all three traits simultaneously. This is likely to have to do with survival, as such traits show confidence and strength in each other.

Text courtesy of Ecoosfera
Photos from Unsplash: Sammy Williams
Translated by María Isabel Carrasco Cara Chards

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