Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Human brains have 'Life of Brian' mechanism - life - 07 August 2010 - New Scientist

Human brains have 'Life of Brian' mechanism - life - 07 August 2010 - New Scientist: "IN A classic Monty Python moment, a chirpy, long-haired man on a crucifix urges others around him in a similar predicament to cheer up. Now neurologists have discovered what might be described as a 'Life of Brian' brain mechanism that encourages us to look on the bright side of life - even when confronted by thoughts of mortality."
"This study is interesting in that it looks at the awareness of death - a uniquely human quality," says Philip Servos, a cognitive neuroscientist at Wilfrid Laurier University in Waterloo, Canada. "It's not surprising that we have the ability to suppress our emotions in this context. What is unexpected is that it is expressed in these two relatively archaic structures in the brain."