Ways of Thinking: From Art to Social Science

This blog originally appeared on September 11, 2013. The chromatic gradation effect. I entered into psychology as many of us do; through the life-theorists. I call them life-theorist because they are not merely clinicians who treat the psychologically disturbed, but also, they think about our common experiences of living, and how to go about those experiences mostContinue reading “Ways of Thinking: From Art to Social Science”

Hugo Münsterberg On Psychology and The Cinema

At the turn of the century the “movies” were the latest rage in both Europe and America. For the French, in the tradition of the Brothers Lumière, cinema was a social experience. The very nature of their sewing machine inspired camera, and the gas lamp illuminated projector, made the cinema a public experience. Unlike theContinue reading “Hugo Münsterberg On Psychology and The Cinema”

A Theory of Depression: S. Freud’s Mourning and Melancholia

Before describing and explaining Sigmund Freud’s theoretical model for understanding depression, I would like to make some points about theory. A theory is a working model; a way of conceptualizing a phenomenon that helps us to understand and effect change in ourselves or others. The American intellectual William James described how theoretical models can beContinue reading “A Theory of Depression: S. Freud’s Mourning and Melancholia”

On Trusting The Process: An Introduction to Secular Buddhist Psychology (Part 1)

Reading Heidegger was one of the biggest intellectual challenges of my life. So many people give up in frustration, and many deal with the inability to “get it” by dismissing it as nonsense. Noam Chomsky is notorious for this point of view. Today, of course, so many  people do “get it” that critiques like thoseContinue reading “On Trusting The Process: An Introduction to Secular Buddhist Psychology (Part 1)”

How we Are, Rather Than Who we Are

There are many theories used to understand personality and human interaction. The interactionist psychologists understand the personality as a phenomenon that emerges from the interaction between two people. When we are in a group, regardless of the number of people present, we still deal with two people interacting; our self and an other. Even whileContinue reading “How we Are, Rather Than Who we Are”

On The Psychology of Religion and Religious Belief (Part 1)

Religion matters to many Americans. When asked, 42% of the population believes in creationism and 57% believes that religion can answer all or most of our problems. This high level of religiosity in roughly half of the population entices a number of questions regarding religiosity and the human experience of religion. We begin with aContinue reading “On The Psychology of Religion and Religious Belief (Part 1)”