April 12, 2011
Exploring the Cooperation Instinct
Tired of living in a dog-eat-dog world? Ready to envision a way to do your personal best while supported by everyone around you? Author Lynne McTaggart encourages us to consider a wealth of recent scientific studies pointing us down a refreshingly different path... toward cooperation. The Bond invites us to find ways to interact with and relate to the highest sense of good in others as the key to mankind's future success. The Bond is organized in three main sections, with part one covering the concept of the Superorganism, part two describing the Pull to Wholeness (how we're born to belong, agree, give, and take turns), and part three about Recovering the Bond. I particularly love reading how recent studies in game theory demonstrate the winningest game strategies involve cooperating and taking turns, rather than adhering to a pure individually competitive model. It's not too great a leap from seeing the benefits of sharing, taking turns, and reciprocity in games to taking similar actions in real life... and I love reading about how humans have been hard-wired biologically to feel best when doing exactly that. I'm inspired to learn that one simple thing we can do to improve our physical health is to become a member of a close-knit group or community; and a simple way to reduce depression and loneliness is to actively help others. One of the most powerful ideas in The Bond has to do with ways we learn to pay attention, and how learning to pay attention to more than we have previously noticed can make a profound difference. McTaggart explains, "When you notice the whole, you allow for and respect more than one version of reality." While opposing ideologies sometimes find little to agree upon, the very idea that there exists a greater wholeness brings healing. The Bond is packed with inspirational ideas and practical tips for anyone interested in finding out how to live their best possible life feeling supported by bonds of connection, rather than struggling in competitive isolation. Highly recommended!