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TED: Michael Shermer - The Pattern Behind Self-Deception


By Matisse VerDuyn on July 5th, 2014


From We want to discover patterns and associations to gain a sense of control / order (so much so, it can lead to superstition). Why? Believing a pattern is real, when it is not (false positive, safer, risk averse) is better than not believing a pattern is real, when it actually is (false negative, careless, risky). Scenario: if you hear a noise and run, you're okay whether it's a predator or just the wind, but if you hear a noise don't run, you'll die if it's a predator. Evolution has shaped us to lean towards false positives for survival. More meaningful patterns are recognized by the right hemisphere of your brain (via the left eye) than the left hemisphere (via the right eye). Dopamine also causes you to more frequently identify patterns.



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