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Homo pleonexia: Man of desire.

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Presentation on theme: "Homo pleonexia: Man of desire."— Presentation transcript:

1 Homo pleonexia: Man of desire.
Dr Elizabeth Tindle FAPS AFBPS

2 Pleonexia An enslaving desire for more.
pleo = more An enslaving DESIRE for more Shermer, Mind of the market - “Homo economicus“ - humans are motivated to decrease their work and increase their money. Author of "Why we believe in weird things"

3 Why do we do what we do? Biological: Survival of self and offspring. Dawkins, “The selfish gene” All creatures driven (motivated) to find a mate (a receptacle for one’s genes) Biological investment to continue self into future. Need security (food, home, safe from threat)

4 CONTEXT Human behaviour reflects the context in which we find ourselves (The Lucifer Factor, Phillip Zimbardo, 2007) World context- globalization: global crime : international criminal networks (20% world’s GDP) Liberalisation of financial and commodity markets.

5 Historical Perspective
Aesop’s fable: The dog and his "shadow" Aesop, a slave to a philosopher. 5th Century BC “I will get a bigger piece than I have at present” Lost both (compare “victims” of scams) Moral of the story!?

6 Appetite “Seeking affluence creates a constant feeling of deprivation”
Michael Oakeshott in ‘The tower of Babel’ Affluence will make us happy. Acquisitiveness – like the Jackdaw of Rheims, we gather more and more items to us We die with our possessions – burial grounds: Indian suttee.

7 Common Proverbs or sayings
A fool and his money are soon parted. In for a penny: In for a pound. No time like the present Strike while the iron’s hot! He who hesitates is lost. Take care of the pence and the pounds will take care of themselves.

8 Warning proverbs and sayings.
The grass is greener on the other side of the fence. Curiosity killed the cat. All that glitters is not gold. If you play with fire you will get your fingers burned. A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush.

9 Retirement nest egg Uncertainties- imponderables Is it enough?
How much is enough? How long will I live? Cost of medical care I must be safe and secure Quality of life Angst, Trying to cover all bases for happiness (Love and money)

Retirement!! What will I do? Age 55!! years of WHAT? Loss of role, purpose or meaning. eg Doctor - Nobody needs me now. Money symbol or badge of success “I’m a winner!” “Look at me” “I’m important” “Don’t ignore me”

11 Initial email Someone has sent me a “letter” Someone has noticed me
Someone is listening to me. Not much happening today. Curiosity. Unknown adventure. Fills an existential void.

12 ID versus Superego (Freud)
ID - Instinctual drives (sex, greed! – seven capital vices?) Greed, gluttony, lust, envy, pride, avarice, sloth Superego – conscience Conflict between the two = anxiety Ego – self, I, psyche. “I’m a nobody: Who are you? Are you a nobody too?” Emily Dickinson

13 Condoned the investment of money to make more
Parable of the TALENTS Condoned the investment of money to make more Punished the one who safeguarded his money Rewarded the former with the capital of the latter. “It’s Gospel!!!” I have to invest my super and make more..

14 “Skinner box” behaviour
Will continue conditioned behaviour while there is still an adrenaline rush. Waiting for reward (the pellet). On the edge of the seat –expectancy. Feel alive. Excitement with risk. Tickle of the brain pleasure centre Ennui - feel flat, low depressed, bored. Anomie – disconnected- alone

15 Ego driven behaviour Why go sky diving, white water rafting, BMX jumping, car or motorbike racing, mountain climbing? Sailing, skiing etc? The risk, the thrill and the adrenaline rush are pleasant. Secretive anti social or illegal risks (crime, fraud) are taken every day.

16 The spectrum of 'love' Deals male /female- hoax?
Women on world market looking for a better life (sugar daddy!) Catalogue “brides” Girls for brothels- voluntary-paid Girls trafficked for brothels-no pay- as good as owning a race horse.

17 The package/ pay-off Regular sex. Emotional attachment.
Somebody to do the jobs/ chores Companion- second income!! “He who dies with the most orgasms wins”. A highly prized commodity.

18 Unusual internet behaviour
Copy cat suicides –Bridgend, Wales. PIU Compulsive Denial of having a problem Impulsive cf gambling Excitement – risky Intermittent reinforcement – longer to 'extinguish'.


20 Finally "Happiness is a mind free from fear and desire"
Comments? Questions? Thankyou for your time and attention Elizabeth

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