"Rich Travsky" <[email protected]> wrote in message
> Neuroscientists have proposed a simple explanation for the pleasure
> of grasping a new concept: The brain is getting its fix.
> The "click" of comprehension triggers a biochemical cascade that
> rewards the brain with a shot of natural opium-like substances,
> said Irving Biederman of the University of Southern California. He
> presents his theory in an invited article in the latest issue of
> American Scientist.
> The brain's craving for a fix motivates humans to maximize the rate
> at which they absorb knowledge, he said.
> "I think we're exquisitely tuned to this as if we're junkies, second
> by second."
> Biederman hypothesized that knowledge addiction has strong
> evolutionary value because mate selection correlates closely with
> perceived intelligence.
> Only more pressing material needs, such as hunger, can suspend the
> quest for knowledge, he added.
> The same mechanism is involved in the aesthetic experience, Biederman
> said, providing a neurological explanation for the pleasure we derive
> from art.
> Yes, very interesting from an evolutionary viewpoint.
I've been watching a baby's growth and development for 4.5 months now and
have been highly entertained. This "developmental trail" is relentless even
though the baby can't possibly know what the purpose of grasping his other
hand could be or how success leads to the next step. It is obvious that the
baby delights in accomplishing each task. Maybe babies get that
"biochemical cascade that rewards the brain," too.