I once read a book on the human brain; it was one of those books where each chapter begins with an interesting quote from some wise person. One of the chapters began with this quote:
The human brain is the only organ that's discovered itself.
I thought about that a good hard while, and realized it's more profound than it sounds, because as far as we know, the human brain is the only entity in the universe that is aware of its own existence. If you do not find that stunningly profound, you are not a psychologist (or biologist) at heart.
There are many who say that most issues regarding human thought, feeling, and behavior are predominantly biological in origin, programmed into each one of us at birth through our genetic codes. That is not to say that environmental factors don't shape behaviour, but response to external stimuli may, in and of itself, be genetically programmed. Recent research with PET (positron emission tomography) scans have identified areas of the brain responsible for religious behaviour and feelings of faith. It is possible, after all, that we are really just manifestations of molecules, atoms, and electrons, but time will tell.
Talk therapy helps people who need to talk, and one cannot diminish the benefit even if you are not one of those types. And of course, drugs shape behaviour by interacting at the molecular level with the body's own chemical machinery.
Stay abreast of developments in the field of psychology. As if they were testing us, there are two organizations using the letters APA, so don't think you're the only one who is confused. The first is the American Psychological Association and the second is the American Psychiatric Association. Perhaps it's a battle of the minds between these two organizations.
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