You are the average of the five people you spend the most...

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enigmaT120
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Re: You are the average of the five people you spend the most...

Post by enigmaT120 » Wed Mar 23, 2016 12:53 pm

BRUTE wrote: brute would argue that "intelligence", if it can even be defined, is highly specialized and localized. while there seem many humans who are extremely adapt in one specialized skill, and a few humans that are generally good with many skills, there seem to be almost no humans that are extremely good even at several skills (not to speak of many).
A slightly different topic, but a fun one. I think if it is highly specialized and localized, it's not what I call intelligence. I don't consider intelligence to be a scalpel or rapier, but more like a blunt instrument. It works for everything.

BRUTE
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Re: You are the average of the five people you spend the most...

Post by BRUTE » Wed Mar 23, 2016 4:20 pm

then, in brute's opinion, it doesn't exist. brute hasn't met someone that had a skill that worked for everything.

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Re: You are the average of the five people you spend the most...

Post by 7Wannabe5 » Wed Mar 23, 2016 8:11 pm

What enigmaT120 said. IQ doesn't measure highest skill attainment level. It measures the ability to do just about anything more competently than average. For instance, you can very quickly train somebody with a high IQ to be your new night janitor. They might get bored with it and quit after a week, but for a few days they will be super-competent. It is very easy to spot the kids with higher IQs in a group of 6 year olds all attempting to master basic skills. Even if they are badly behaved, they are like bing-bing-bing on any new concepts, sometimes jumping two connections ahead of most of the rest of the group.

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Re: You are the average of the five people you spend the most...

Post by BRUTE » Thu Mar 24, 2016 1:29 pm

conversely, brute believes high IQ simply measures being very good at a given IQ test (and there are many). brute knew a human who practiced IQ tests for fun, until he could generally attain the maximum score (which varies from test to test, some only go to 140, other 160, or higher) in a fraction of the given time.

this person is certainly clever, but outside of a few competencies, this amazing IQ doesn't seem to mean anything.

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Ego
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Re: You are the average of the five people you spend the most...

Post by Ego » Fri Apr 29, 2016 3:38 pm

Friends 'better than morphine': Larger social networks release more pain-killing endorphin

http://medicalxpress.com/news/2016-04-f ... works.html

People with more friends have higher pain tolerance, Oxford University researchers have found.

Katerina Johnson, a doctoral student in the University's Department of Experimental Psychology, was studying whether differences in our neurobiology may help explain why some of us have larger social networks than others.

She said: "I was particularly interested in a chemical in the brain called endorphin. Endorphins are part of our pain and pleasure circuitry—they're our body's natural painkillers and also give us feelings of pleasure. Previous studies have suggested that endorphins promote social bonding in both humans and other animals. One theory, known as 'the brain opioid theory of social attachment", is that social interactions trigger positive emotions when endorphin binds to opioid receptors in the brain. This gives us that feel-good factor that we get from seeing our friends.

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Re: You are the average of the five people you spend the most...

Post by jacob » Wed May 18, 2016 9:49 am

http://www.amazon.com/Consilience-Knowl ... 067976867X

Thought this book would be of interest and 1/5 of it specifically deals with epigenetics and to what degree it determines human culture.

Wilson has a background in ants and if there's anything that determines the behaviour of an ant, it's the five ants around it.

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Ego
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Re: You are the average of the five people you spend the most...

Post by Ego » Sat May 21, 2016 8:37 pm

Stress Tolerance: A Heuristic for Aging
Nutrigenomics, Epigenetics, and Stress Tolerance

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qvNLNl7oJnM

She touches on many topics we discuss here.
-Why you might want to do 23andme genetic testing.
-Intermittent fasting.
-Autophagy.
-Epigenetics and DNA repair.
-The heat stress induced during exercise may be responsible for much of the benefits of exercise
-Neurogenesis
-Importance of Vitamin D and Omega 3
-Meditation and telomerase
-Interesting idea that blind people have half the cancer incidence of sighted people because melatonin production is inhibited by visual light so they have higher levels of melatonin.
-The glymphatic system which cleanses the brain during sleep.

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Ego
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Re: You are the average of the five people you spend the most...

Post by Ego » Sat Aug 27, 2016 6:59 am

Holocaust Exposure Induced Intergenerational Trauma

http://www.biologicalpsychiatryjournal. ... 6/abstract

This is the first demonstration of an association of preconception parental trauma with epigenetic alterations that is evident in both exposed parent and offspring, providing potential insight into how severe psychophysiological trauma can have intergenerational effects.


https://www.geneticliteracyproject.org/ ... nerations/

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Ego
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Re: You are the average of the five people you spend the most...

Post by Ego » Mon Jan 09, 2017 9:04 am

The Stoic Dear Abby answers an interesting question:

D. writes: “How would a Stoic react to our modern concept of IQ and genetics? In societies where high-IQ is correlated with achieving academic accomplishment in high-level subjects, and the corollary benefits conferred to them by society, what would a Stoic do in the face of this genetic determinism? What would a Stoic tell someone who had low intelligence, but desperately wanted to achieve competence in a high-level skill? A life pursuing your dream, even in inevitable and constant failure is more meaningful than a life where a dream is given up? Or, would he be advised to live a more practical life? Did the Stoics have a concept of innate talent?”

Very good question, and — if I may be a bit immodest — you asked the right person, since I’m not just a practitioner of Stoicism, I’m a biologist whose specialty happens to be gene-environment interactions.......


Full answer here> https://howtobeastoic.wordpress.com/201 ... ur-dreams/

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Ego
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Re: You are the average of the five people you spend the most...

Post by Ego » Sun Jan 15, 2017 8:12 am

A new view on evolution (extended evolutionary synthesis, EES) seeks to incorporate new finding on epigenetics and the influence of ones culture on evolution.

https://www.quantamagazine.org/20170105 ... evolution/

The modern synthesis developed in the 1930s and 1940s and basically had finished by the 1950s. At that time, little was known about the molecular biology of development — how what’s going on in the development process itself influences what can happen to the evolutionary trajectory of cells and organisms. Although some of its originators were interested in behavior, many were steeped in the eugenics tradition. They would have thought that the majority of behaviors were determined by genes. The inclusion of other forms of inheritance totally changes evolutionary dynamics.

How can these epigenetic changes affect the traits that natural selection can act on — and therefore the future course of evolution?

We’ve just submitted a paper on epigenetic contributions to longevity in hunter-gatherers. There is increasing evidence of important associations between the level of methylation [which affects how strongly your genes are expressed] and features of your environment such as diet, stress and poverty.

If those things are culturally transmitted, those effects on evolution are going to be longer term. Simple notions of the ways in which traits are formed are going to be thrown out the window.

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Re: You are the average of the five people you spend the most...

Post by jennypenny » Fri May 19, 2017 4:09 am

Here's another article on trauma and epigenetics ... http://www.tabletmag.com/jewish-arts-an ... hel-yehuda

I found this question relevant to what we've discuss here regarding hormesis and self-induced stress for self-improvement.

[Q] "My friend Edward Luttwak compares Israeli society to a soup that his housekeeper makes. He says that the soup has to be left to cook over a low to medium flame all day long, and then it tastes amazing. But if the heat is too low, it tastes terrible. And if you turn the heat up too high, it also tastes terrible. His point being that this particular society functions better with what we would regard as an intolerable level of stress, because that’s what these people are optimized to deal with. If you take that away, they actually become less productive, less creative."

[A]"From my perspective, I’m more interested whether or not the low flame is going to have the same effect on the carrots and the peas. That is what I’m interested in. Or whether the low flame will have different effects on two individual carrots. So, the idea of a flame being too high or not being there at all, that’s nice in terms of understanding what it takes to catalyze any biologic change—that’s correct, you have to have something, but not too much. Too much is death. Too little is not enough environment for anything to occur. But the question is where we want to put our focus in terms of understanding how different things work. We can focus on the unit of analysis that’s generalizable to every ingredient, or we can ask, “What are the differences?”

For decades, the field of stress research did the first thing: What is the effect of a stressor? What I’m interested in is how people fundamentally transform themselves, because this is not such an easy thing to do. We are to some extent prisoners of our biology and our environments. We can theoretically choose our environments; in practice, our choices are more limited based on our genetics, and a lot of factors that are superimposed on our presumed free will. But I’m always going to be interested in the differences."


Interesting stuff.

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Ego
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Re: You are the average of the five people you spend the most...

Post by Ego » Sat May 04, 2019 10:28 am

New study...

https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10. ... ode=vsoc20&
The results suggest that five (plus or minus one) people constitutes the point at which a collection of persons is perceived less like separate individuals and more like a single, unified group.
I wonder if this explains why we are so influenced by those with whom we spend the most time. Rather than seeing (and being seen as) a collection of individuals we see our group as one whole.

daylen
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Re: You are the average of the five people you spend the most...

Post by daylen » Sat May 04, 2019 10:50 am

This seems fairly obvious to me. Not sure why a study is needed to show that five decision-making machines in the same area couple together.

On the other hand.. I dislike the concept of "averaging" and/or "unifying" because these can be measured however people want. These words are ambiguous when dealing with numbers, so they mean absolutely nothing to me when dealing with humans.

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Re: You are the average of the five people you spend the most...

Post by daylen » Sat May 04, 2019 11:17 am

A more constructive comment: look into the synchronization of dynamical systems. Steven Strogatz has done some research on fireflies for instance.

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Re: You are the average of the five people you spend the most...

Post by jennypenny » Sat May 04, 2019 11:56 am

@Ego -- I thought about this when I read a recent article in The Atlantic about the optimal family size (they said 3 kids). The article was mostly anecdotal, but it got me thinking about how we view our family depending on its size. It's well-established that 'only' children are more creative and successful, yet they also score lower on metrics like agreeableness. I wonder if small families produce better people from an individual perspective and large families produce better people from a group perspective.

I also think about this concept wrt the trend towards self-imposed bubbles. I would think that five great-yet-diverse influencers would be better than five great-but-almost-exactly-the-same influencers. No proof, just a hunch.

daylen wrote:
Sat May 04, 2019 10:50 am
This seems fairly obvious to me. Not sure why a study is needed to show that five decision-making machines in the same area couple together.
We aren't just decision-making machines though. Some (most?) of us actively disengage our frontal lobes several times a day, many of which turn out to be the most pleasurable parts. I thought the main purpose of meditative practices was to learn how to turn off our decision-making engine and just _be_.

Point being ... some of the five people who influence us are doing it in ways other than through better decision making.

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Re: You are the average of the five people you spend the most...

Post by daylen » Sat May 04, 2019 12:14 pm

@Jenny Depends on what we mean by a decision. Forget I said that.. replace "decision-making machine" with "complex system" or just "system".. if many systems are "close" then they "interact".. the way that closeness and interaction are defined will determine what data is collected.. which leads the researcher to find certain correlations. The only thing that can be measured is how often similar "actions" appear together in a set of discrete systems. See https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Synchro ... n_of_chaos

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Ego
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Re: You are the average of the five people you spend the most...

Post by Ego » Sat May 04, 2019 1:11 pm

jennypenny wrote:
Sat May 04, 2019 11:56 am
I wonder if small families produce better people from an individual perspective and large families produce better people from a group perspective.
Interesting. If a family of three always thinks of themselves as individuals while a family of five thinks of themselves as one entity, that's got to somehow influence the subject/object development of the self.

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Subject_(philosophy)
daylen wrote:
Sat May 04, 2019 10:50 am
On the other hand.. I dislike the concept of "averaging" and/or "unifying" because these can be measured however people want. These words are ambiguous when dealing with numbers, so they mean absolutely nothing to me when dealing with humans.
I get that. I guess the overall point is how we can be influenced by our interaction with others without realizing it. See some of the epigenetic discussion upthread.

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Re: You are the average of the five people you spend the most...

Post by daylen » Sat May 04, 2019 1:38 pm

It appears to me that "epigenetic change"(*) is best encapsulated in the Kegan model where the "individual", "self", "subject", or "degree of maturity" is approximated by the categories of objects they attend to. This assumes categories can have other categories as objects; some interesting paradoxes can arise from this (see Russell's paradox).

Most people operate at the third order most of the time where they identify with their group, so they would in some sense "normalize" to that group (e.g. regression to mean of whatever variable is being measured).

At the forth order, an individual would become "possessed" by a doctrine or abstract system. Hence the phrase: "ideas have people". A solid example is the behavior of Karl Marx while developing Marxism.

(*) This is a fairly muddy concept that could mean many things depending on what traits you are looking at.

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Re: You are the average of the five people you spend the most...

Post by jennypenny » Sat May 04, 2019 4:21 pm

Epigenetic change is physical. The people around us literally have the power to change our biology, not just change our view of self per Kegan.

daylen
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Re: You are the average of the five people you spend the most...

Post by daylen » Sat May 04, 2019 4:40 pm

"Epigenetics is the study of heritable phenotype changes that do not involve alterations in the DNA sequence" - wikipedia. To me, this sounds like a fancy term for the development of organisms in a lineage. The phenotype of an organism is just the set of their observable traits. What observations should be called "physical"? .. particle collisions? cell functions? .. physiological functions? .. behavior? .. language use? All these levels produce data, and the data is what we end up drawing conclusions from.

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