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Wisdom is a Malfunctioning Brain

  • Every organ of the body ages and its performance declines over the years
  • Brain regions are no exception: brains are subject to functional decline, diminished resilience, susceptibility to disease, neurodegenerative diseases and cognitive decline; i.e. aging brains become less and less effective at remembering, learning, coordinating movement, seeing, hearing, etc
  • Nonetheless all societies tend to appreciate the "wisdom" of older people
  • This is largely based on the fact that older people are better at simulating the future because they know the past but also because older people are less prone to engage in violent behavior
  • There is actually no evidence that older people are better at guessing the future than younger people
  • Older people are only better at talking about the past
  • There is however plenty of evidence that older people are less prone to violence, even when armed to the teeth
  • Wherever the median age of the population has increased, society has become less violent
  • Neuroscience increasingly shows that older brains "malfunction", i.e. they don't perform as well for the functions that they are genetically programmed to perform
  • The conclusion from the facts that a) older brains malfunction and that b) older brain tend to be nonviolent is that nonviolence is a malfunction of the brain, i.e. that violence is one function for which the human brain is genetically programmed
  • We become less violent with age because our brains work less well
  • "Aging" societies become less violent when malfunctioning brains of older people control society
  • In general, moral values, ethical principles, etc tend to be spread and taught by older brains
  • The whole system of ethics, empathy, charity, altruism, etc is a product of malfunctioning brains
  • The nasty truth is that we are born violent, genetically programmed to be violent, and we owe peaceful societies to the fact that we live longer lives and therefore we have older brains that, like all other organs, don't function as well as when we were young