We all have our story -- and our story is us. Our past is brought carried into our present, and it becomes our companion in the future as well. Our life becomes richer and more fulfilling when we learn that our story is simply that -- a story.
In his book, Zombie Politics and Culture in the Age of Casino Capitalism, Henry Giroux connects the dots to prove his theory that our current system is informed by a "machinery of social and civil death" that chills "any vestige of a robust democracy."
When Federal Reserve Chief Ben Bernanke appeared on 60 Minutes to persuade us to bail out the banking system, he didn't bother with charts, figures or lengthy argument. Instead, he used something far more powerful: Analogy and metaphor.
So far, the "Lady Macbeth Effect" has been mostly a curiosity -- a peek at the quirkiness of the not-entirely-rational human mind. But might this scientific insight actually be clinically useful? Tel Aviv University psychological scientist Reuven Dar and his colleagues thought that it might.
We all use different metaphors, of course -- they may shift back and forth in a single day. But we also have our core images, the metaphors that really stick, sometimes long after their due date expires.
When I told people I was training to become a therapist the reaction typically was, "That will help you so much as a writer." Actually, it turned out to be the opposite: being a writer helped me as a therapist.
In one experiment, the strength of blink reflexes to unexpected noises was measured and correlated with degrees of reactions to external threats. Conservatives reacted considerably more strongly than liberals.