I only know David Brooks well enough to know that some people don\’t like him. But not in the way people don\’t like Donald Trump, they just seem to think he\’s lame. I say this only to say that I did not have this bias against him when reading this book, I just didn\’t like it.My brother recommended the book to me and I was definitely excited to start reading it. But I think that the book just got crushed under the weight of everything it was trying to do. The book is simultaneously a life story about two people, Harold and Erica, and a well-researched scientific synopsis of every small part of their life story. He flips between these two modes often and it just dragged after a while. However, I do recommend it for anyone who wants to read a broad overview of self-help-science topics without having to read all of self-help-science bestsellers.[From Jan: The Social Animal was definitely doing the most. Brooks\’ writing takes on a self-indulgent-bed-time-story kind of vibe if that\’s what you\’re in to. But like The Power of Habit and Gladwell\’s books, this one is a solid \”edutainment\” books that fueled my curiosity early on.]Here are my notes!
Central evolutionary truth-unconscious mind matter mostCentral humanistic truth-conscious mind can influence unconsciousWe become who we are in conjunction to others becoming who they areGreeks-We suffer our way to wisdomThe brain is not separate from the body(Descartes\’ error)Emotion assigns value to things and reason can make choices based on those valuationsAristotle-\”we acquire good virtues by first having them put in action\”William James- \”A man has as many social selves as there are individuals who recognize him and carry an image of him in their mind\”Culture is a collection of habits,practices,beliefs, arguments, and tensions that regulate and guide human lifeDifferent cultures have different values, which lead to different priorities and thus different resultsRelationships-the only thing that really matters for happinessArthur Aron-Love is not an emotion, it\’s a motivational state, a catalyst for other emotions such as euphoria or miseryWisdom begins with the awareness of our own ignoranceWilliam James- The art of being wise is the art of knowing what to overlookI hope these these criticism are coming from a good place and are helping him become less lame. Wherever David Brooks is right now, I pray that he is well and having a good day.