De døendes kropper

Hva angrer de døende på? Og hva kan det lære oss om hvordan vi skal leve?

Too often, it’s only as a patient realizes that he or she will lose their body that they finally appreciate how truly wonderful it is.

«I am going to miss this body so much,» a different patient, many decades younger, told me.

She held her hands up in the dim light that seeped through the sunshade on the window. She stared at them as though she had never seen them before.

«I’d never admit it to my husband and kids, but more than anything else, it’s my own body I’ll miss most of all. This body that danced and ate and swam and had sex and made babies. It’s amazing to think about it. This body actually made my children. It carried me through this world.»

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Tenk deg nøye om…

… når var egentlig sist du tenkte deg nøye om? En ny metastudie viser at majoriteten av oss faktisk synes det er ubehagelig å måtte sitte alene med tankene våre, selv om det bare er noen minutter:

“We had noted how wedded to our devices we all seem to be and that people seem to find any excuse they can to keep busy,” said Timothy Wilson, a psychology professor at the University of Virginia and lead author of the study. “No one had done a simple study letting people go off on their own and think.”

The results surprised him and have created a stir in the psychology and neuroscience communities. In 11 experiments involving more than 700 people, the majority of participants reported that they found it unpleasant to be alone in a room with their thoughts for just 6 to 15 minutes.

Moreover, in one experiment, 64 percent of men and 15 percent of women began self-administering electric shocks when left alone to think. These same people, by the way, had previously said they would pay money to avoid receiving the painful jolt.

It didn’t matter if the subjects engaged in the contemplative exercise at home or in the laboratory, or if they were given suggestions of what to think about, like a coming vacation; they just didn’t like being in their own heads.

It could be because human beings, when left alone, tend to dwell on what’s wrong in their lives. We have evolved to become problem solvers and meaning makers. What preys on our minds, when we aren’t updating our Facebook page or in spinning class, are the things we haven’t figured out — difficult relationships, personal and professional failures, money trouble, health concerns and so on. And until there is resolution, or at least some kind of understanding or acceptance, these thoughts reverberate in our heads. Hello rumination. Hello insomnia.

Les mer i artikkelen No Time to Think hos The New York Times

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Thinking Cap