Opinions

Human brain gets drawn to mediocrity!

Some neurologists like Kendell, Forsyth and Sharpe at Illinois University in the US have recently concluded that an average human brain actually gets drawn to mediocrity and lowly things. This is really interesting, but is not exactly a brand-new finding because centuries ago Chanakya wrote, 'Vyaktim nikrishtam prakriti paravritte adhiniyam' (It's the inexorable law of nature that a human being often gets attracted to mediocre and inferior things). Sigmund Freud also said that 'Humans are actually scared of all that's sublime in nature and highly exalted in the fellow human beings.' This explains why basic instincts often pander to our collective psyche and why we spontaneously enjoy not-so-nice things more than persistently classy pursuits of life. 

Despite continuous evolution, an average human brain still finds it difficult to relate to exquisiteness for a long time. Many women of class and refined tastes fell for the legendary Italian violinist Niccolo Paganini (1782-1840) for his genius as a violinist and composer of the highest order. But they soon left the man because they couldn't relate to his remarkable talents and fell for those men who were diametrically opposite to the virtuoso. In other words, women fell for the ordinary men after leaving an extraordinary genius like Paganini, whose music and compositions were otherworldly. In other words, the very qualities they fell for became intellectually unattainable and undesirable traits after some time and the women fell apart.

Conrad Lawrence explained this phenomenon further in his 'Theory of imprinting' for which he won the Nobel for medicine and physiology. He stated that the reason most of the humans across the globe, regardless of their ethnicity and other extraneous considerations, remember cuss words and dirty terms more than the standard words of any language is because imprecations get registered on human brains much more easily than noble and acceptable glossary. 

Have you ever thought, why purists frown upon internet language? The reason is simple: Its negative linguistic attraction works faster and in a more effective way than the polished language. It's not to save the time but the inherent human tendency to be drawn to mediocrity that we unknowingly type BTW rather than 'By the way' or 'asap' instead of complete and comprehensive as soon as possible. The list of such distortions is endless. 

Unattainably high qualities in an individual may seem very attractive from a distance but those who come closer and forge a rapport with such brilliant minds, soon realise that it's not possible for them to compete with such astounding qualities and they leave the geniuses with their frightening mental prowess. 

Genius has a problem. It gives huge inferiority complex to those who come in contact with it. Since it's an ingrained human proclivity to be drawn to the mediocrity and inferiority, genius is often hurriedly left by those who can't hold a candle to it. Moreover, geniuses are rarely to be found amidst our complacently mediocre society. They're rarer than the word 'rare' itself. 

Nature-wise, to go downward is far easier than to ascend and go upward. Water comes down easily but can't go up. To fall is easier than to rise. Evolutionary biologists have defined nine stages of human evolution or brain development. Most of us are still stuck on the second stage, just a notch higher than the stage of animals they're in! We may erroneously think that we're highly evolved but to quote Friedrich Nietzsche, 'Mankind is still standing on the lowest rung of the ladder of human evolution.'

It's because of our collective mediocrity, we naturally feel an empathy for all that's mediocre in nature and around us. We can't even relate to the best, let alone the very best. 

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