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Oxytocin, The Moral Molecule - Poem by gershon hepner


If you find all the people whom you meet seem to be grossin'
you out you may have a deficiency of oxytocin,
a hormone empathy produces so that you can trust
the sort of feelings which a lack of it turns love to lust.
Without oxytocin nobody can be seduced
by love that's virtuous, you need the oxytocin boost
to bond with lovers, with whom you without it always quarrel:
The moral is this moral molecule makes people moral.

Paul J. Zak, Director of the Center for Neuroeconomics at Claremont Graduate University, who is also a Professor of Neurology at Loma Linda University, writes about oxytocin in the WSJ,4/28-29-12 ("The Trust Molecule") :

Why are some people trustworthy, while others lie, cheat and steal? Part of the answer may reside in a hormone called oxytocin. Claremont Graduate University's Paul Zak talks with WSJ's Gary Rosen about how a 'vampire wedding' helped him understand how this chemical works to control trust, empathy and virtue.
Could a single molecule—one chemical substance—lie at the very center of our moral lives?
Research that I have done over the past decade suggests that a chemical messenger called oxytocin accounts for why some people give freely of themselves and others are coldhearted louts, why some people cheat and steal and others you can trust with your life, why some husbands are more faithful than others, and why women tend to be nicer and more generous than men. In our blood and in the brain, oxytocin appears to be the chemical elixir that creates bonds of trust not just in our intimate relationships but also in our business dealings, in politics and in society at large…
More strikingly, we found that you don't need to shoot a chemical up someone's nose, or have sex with them, or even give them a hug in order to create the surge in oxytocin that leads to more generous behavior. To trigger this 'moral molecule, ' all you have to do is give someone a sign of trust. When one person extends himself to another in a trusting way—by, say, giving money—the person being trusted experiences a surge in oxytocin that makes her less likely to hold back and less likely to cheat. Which is another way of saying that the feeling of being trusted makes a person more…trustworthy. Which, over time, makes other people more inclined to trust, which in turn…
The experiments I have conducted show that many group activities—singing, dancing, praying—cause the release of oxytocin and promote connection and caring. As social creatures, we have created activities that prompt the expression of oxytocin in order to foster connection to others. In fact, those who release the most oxytocin when they are trusted are happier and healthier because they have richer social lives.
Even the sort of 'social snacking' that happens through Twitter or checking out a friend's Facebook page can prompt an oxytocin surge. But the real criterion for success is whether these online activities complement more substantial personal connections. Does this form of communication foster human bonds or does it foster anonymity and abstraction to the point of cutting off empathy?
Hi Gershon, wow! My work has never inspired a poem before. Very cool. thanks for sending it.
4/28/12 #10,030

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Poems About Trust

  1. 1. Oxytocin, The Moral Molecule , gershon hepner
  2. 2. If This Is Meant , Lawrence S. Pertillar
  3. 3. Fundamental Of Liar Chapter Xcvi: Faith , maria sudibyo
  4. 4. Trust With A , gajanan mishra
  5. 5. And Trust Me , gajanan mishra
  6. 6. Buddha At The Bodhi Tree (Sri Lanka) , sheena blackhall
  7. 7. Frustration , Bob Gotti
  8. 8. Would You Trust Assad? , Joe Rosochacki
  9. 9. People Who Believe , Lawrence S. Pertillar
  10. 10. Swapnil Singh Hymn , Aldo Kraas
  11. 11. Trust , MOHAMMAD SKATI
  12. 12. You Cant Find Love Trust Me , vincent armone
  13. 13. Never , Miroslava Odalovic
  14. 14. Trust. Not. , Lawrence S. Pertillar
  15. 15. 'Lenexa Baptist Church = Trust In The Lo.. , Tom Zart
  16. 16. Trust.... , hazem al jaber
  17. 17. Trust Is On Hopes. , Rm.Shanmugam Chettiar.
  18. 18. When I Trust , Lawrence S. Pertillar
  19. 19. Our Words Are Not Funny , MOHAMMAD SKATI
  20. 20. We Must Stick To Our Words , MOHAMMAD SKATI
  21. 21. People , MOHAMMAD SKATI
  22. 22. Love Is A Battlefield , Lilly Emery
  23. 23. Trust Without Doubt , Francis Duggan
  24. 24. How To Survive Without Riches , Lawrence S. Pertillar
  25. 25. Over With A Revolver , Ace Of Black Hearts
  26. 26. Do Not Trust , gajanan mishra
  27. 27. The Symbol Of Trust , Edward Kofi Louis
  28. 28. Christ Came , Bob Gotti
  29. 29. Love Will Find A Way , ivor or ivor.e hogg
  30. 30. Miss X , Francis Duggan
  31. 31. Trust Is Crust Like Skin , Is It Poetry
  32. 32. Trust , faheema Khalid
  33. 33. Cant Trust Neting @ All , Shilesha Johnson
  34. 34. Let The Trusting Trust~ Haiku , Charles Garcia
  35. 35. Trust In Me , Johnathan Butler
  36. 36. Trust In Me , Alicia Shute
  37. 37. Lies Love Pain , Michael Peterson
  38. 38. A Word On Trust , Justin Reamer
  39. 39. My Friends Poem 'Trust Me' , Jackie Thielman
  40. 40. Let Me Trust You, , maxpoet beauty
  41. 41. In Trusting My God... , MoonBee Canady
  42. 42. You Lost My Trust , Emily Corvinus
  43. 43. Sister To Sister , sandy clark
  44. 44. This Lack Of Trust , Nick Downer
  45. 45. Trust The Trust , Mahima Mandal
  46. 46. Trust , Samin Fatima
  47. 47. I Have A Heart You Betrayed , William Castillo
  48. 48. Love, Respect, Trust , LOUIS SHEFFIELD
  49. 49. Trust , Miss Agony in Love
  50. 50. Trust , Daniel Cameron
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