Compassion and the human operating system…

I’d like to speculate a bit today (OK, a lot) and, in the process, mash-up some ideas from evolutionary psychology, computer science, and modern psychological therapy. Bear with me, and let’s see what happens… Plotting human origins back through time, we start with single-cell organisms. Read More …

We don’t need any more anger, we need action (and a lot more compassion)…

So, whilst this isn’t a political blog, you’ve probably figured out that I’m not a Trump fan. After the US election last week, like many, I was stunned, and weirded out, and frightened for the future, and a little bit weepy. I also had a Read More …

Me, me, me: The growing danger of narcissism in politics and society…

Modern freedoms are remarkable; it’s unlikely that there’s ever been a time in which individuals in the first world have had so much latitude. We have access to more than ever before: information, employment, education, luxuries, food, and choice. Alongside this growth in freedom is Read More …

Using social media for good instead of evil…

If you’ve read my blogs, you’ll already be familiar with cognitive bias: the universal human tendency to make the same types of errors in our thinking in certain types of situations. Probably resulting from limits in our cognitive architecture (i.e., the way our brain evolved to Read More …

Why we dehumanise others to justify evil…

We’re all aware of the huge number of people currently seeking refuge in Europe in order to escape horrible conditions in countries like Syria. We’ve all seen the disturbing pictures of drowned little boys, and heard the various opinions being spruiked, from compassion to political Read More …

FYI: Emotional intelligence is not arse licking…

So, anyone who’s spent any time working for a large organisation will have come across the “latest management fad” – the supposed panacea that will make everything better. From Myers-Briggs* to Hartman’s Colour Codes^ management fads run the full gamut of pseudoscientific nonsense, wasting time Read More …

The Prisoner’s Dilemma and Compassion…

Imagine the following scenario: two prisoners are held in solitary confinement and have no way of communicating with one another. Each is told, individually, that there are three options: (1) if you betray the other prisoner, you will go free and he will be imprisoned Read More …

The value of human life…

It seems I’m on an ethics and actions binge; all my currently planned posts (I’ve normally got about five drafts ready at any time) appear to have a human rights theme, but I’d actually planned to write this blog about six months ago. You might Read More …

The International Anti-Dick Police…

Today I was going to continue writing my series on wellbeing, but a news headline I heard over the weekend has (to my mind) made it important I write this post. So, the headline was that, recently, a farmer in Egypt was arrested because he Read More …

Why I’m choosing to go vegetarian…

I’m back. Apologies for the lack of entry last week – a combination of jet lag and a cold made sure that didn’t happen. Today, I wanted to write about something that’s been on my mind for a while. Before travelling for a month, my Read More …

The science and practise of compassion: Why we don’t need to invoke spirituality to understand and benefit from compassionate action…

Last week I wrote about how to incorporate the basics of mindfulness into your life. I also promised a follow-up on compassion, but rather than to another ‘Dummies guide’, I thought I’d take a stab at both the science behind compassion and some of the things we Read More …

Mindfulness for Dummies…

I’ve written a lot about why people should cultivate mindfulness, but not so much on how to actually be mindful. This is both normal and strange for me – I’m used to writing about abstract concepts, but when working with my clients, there’s a lot Read More …

What does a compassionate society look like and why should we care?

We live in interesting times. I’m not sure we’re going to make it as a species (see here) and, recently, I’ve been writing about some of the things that we’re going to need if we’re going to survive (like a sense of humour). I’ve also Read More …

Fear, lust, love, compassion…

I’ve got a small confession to make. For the last 10 years I’ve been thinking about writing a book called “Fear, Lust Love…”. I’d planned it as a combination of academic analysis of each concept, combined with a narrative, poetry, and stream of consciousness writing. Read More …

Why we need compassionate politics…

Huh? OK, this might be a bit trickier than I planned, but bear with me. If you live in Australia, the USA, or the UK, the concept of compassionate politics is probably alien. Sure, there are a few senators or representatives (or in the UK, Read More …

The meaning of life…

My last two posts have (perhaps presumptively) told you what you should know. That advice was the product of my years in academia and private practice – I wanted to share my ideas and observations (as well as the actual evidence base) about what really works for Read More …

Consumerism, entitlement and the loss of personal and national identity – Part 3

In my last post I looked at some of the issues associated with being human in the modern world, and why they can limit our ability to function well; in particular limiting our resilience and raising our sense of entitlement. The irony of modern living Read More …