What Percentage of Your Brain do You Use?

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The Key to Self-Esteem? Accomplishment

For decades now it has been the custom for educators to make kids feel good about themselves for no particular reason. This practice, which is not backed by any evidence, is based on the premise that high self-esteem leads to high achievement. Accordingly participants in spelling bees and sporting events all come away with trophies so that no one feels bad about not measuring up.  read more …

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What color is Tuesday? Exploring synesthesia

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Making a TED-Ed lesson: Synesthesia and Playing Cards

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Death: Lessons for Patient and Physicain in the Art of Dying and the End of Life

Death is a topic avoided by both patient and physician. “We did everything we could” has typically come to mean that we’ve done more than we should.

Here is a feature essay in The Washingtonian Magazine about  how I teach student doctors Lessons in the Art of Death and Dying at George Washington University Medical School.

In the 1950s I went with my father on house calls. Nearly every home seemed to have a sick room, and an invalid in need of comfort. In the 1970s no one taught me how to handle fraught, terrifying situations at the end of life. Today, a majority of Americans die alone in hospitals and nursing homes, out of view. The blessing of a peaceful death is something too few people experience. The best way to die is in the room of your choice, surrounded by people of your choice, holding the hand of your choice.

Death, Dying, Compassion, end of life

In my dad’s day, doctors knew how to comfort the sick. I had to feel my way through his teachings.

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The Next America

The NExt AmericaGenerations are more different from each other now than at any time in living memory. The multigenerational household now sees boomers and boomerangers living under the same roof as they once did in the 1940s and 1950s.”  Read Review

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Touched by The Moon

People sleep fitfully during the full moon. Other things happen, too.  Folklore claims that the full moon affects people, yet a lunar influence on human affairs has never been shown—until now. Sleep and subjective well-being do respond to lunar cycles, and there appears to be a second, monthly, clock in the brain besides the familiar circadian one.

 

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