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Friday, August 28th, 2015
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Journal Writing Project: Empathy and why we have it


By Sara Vettleson-Trutza

Mon, Jan 19th, 2015
Posted in Mabel Journal Student Writing Project

Empathy, the intellectual identification with or vicarious experiencing of the feelings, thoughts, or attitudes of another.(Dictionary.com 2014)

Many people know and understand what empathy is. But have you ever wondered why we have empathy? Is it something learned, that our parents taught us? Or is there a more scientific explanation behind empathy?

After a little research, I discovered something interesting that may start to answer this question. In our complex brains there are billions of neurons constantly working, sending messages back and forth responding to multiple different stimuli from our environment. There is a special class of neurons that was discovered around the 1900’s by Italian researchers. They were doing an experiment with macaque monkeys. When they discovered this special class of neurons. They are called mirror neurons. (Susan Perry 2008) They are a special class of neurons the fire when a person acts or watches another person perform the same act. However they have only been proven to be in these monkeys. They are still a fairly recent discovery, and it has yet to be proven that people possess these specialized neurons. (APA 2015) However, if we could prove humans had mirror neurons, an interesting study with empathy could be researched. Does the amount of mirror neurons a person possess affect the amount of empathy they feel?

If I go as far to say humans do have mirror neurons. Are they the reason we have empathy? What happens when we don’t feel empathy? Do mirror neurons not always fire off? Is empathy actually a combination of mirror neurons, learned behavior, and something else?

It is said that serial killers have no empathy. It is also said that children that show no empathy are more likely to become serial killers. Is this always true? No, of course not. Empathy is a state of thought. The individuals are the only ones who knows what they feel. No one else can tell us how to feel, and all of us tend to have more or less empathy depending on many factors and situations. It is an interesting thing. People don’t always react to another person’s situation in an empathetic way. Humans are more likely to have empathy if they themselves experienced the situation.(Susan Perry 2008) They have empathy because they have gone through it and understand what it was like. Mirror neurons could easily come into play with this. Seeing an action and performing an action. Say someon .....
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Journal Writing Project: Vacations

By Gabrielle Sand

Mon, Jan 12th, 2015
Posted in Canton Journal Student Writing Project

Ever since I was a little kid, I would go on family vacations. They weren’t the big huge ones like going to another state for a week vacations, but the ones where you learned something. They would always be short vacations like a day or two, may ..... 
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Journal Writing Project: Vacations

By Gabrielle Sand

Mon, Jan 12th, 2015
Posted in Mabel Journal Student Writing Project

Ever since I was a little kid, I would go on family vacations. They weren’t the big huge ones like going to another state for a week vacations, but the ones where you learned something. They would always be short vacations like a day or two, maybe ..... 
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Journal Writing Project: New Year’s resolution

By Stephanie Phillips

Mon, Jan 5th, 2015
Posted in Canton Journal Student Writing Project

While most people are making their New Year’s resolutions about losing weight or getting active, you could be making yours to save a pet in need. According to ASPCA (2014) there are approximately 7.6 million animals that are sent to animal shelt ..... 
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Journal Writing Project: New Year’s resolution

By Stephanie Phillips

Mon, Jan 5th, 2015
Posted in Mabel Journal Student Writing Project

While most people are making their New Year’s resolutions about losing weight or getting active, you could be making yours to save a pet in need. According to ASPCA (2014) there are approximately 7.6 million animals that are sent to animal shelter ..... 
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Journal Writing Project: Not just a ‘New’ Year

By Jeremiah Munson


Most people are aware of and participate in the tradition of a “New Year’s Resolution.” Whether you want to exercise more, spend more time with your family, or be a little more adventurous, New Year’s resolutions can cover just about every ..... 
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Journal Writing Project: Not just a ‘New’ Year

By Jeremiah Munson

Mon, Dec 29th, 2014
Posted in Peterson Journal Student Writing Project

Most people are aware of and participate in the tradition of a “New Year’s Resolution.” Whether you want to exercise more, spend more time with your family, or be a little more adventurous, New Year’s resolutions can cover just about every ..... 
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Journal Writing Project: Not just a ‘New’ Year

By Jeremiah Munson

Mon, Dec 29th, 2014
Posted in Rushford Journal Student Writing Project

Most people are aware of and participate in the tradition of a “New Year’s Resolution.” Whether you want to exercise more, spend more time with your family, or be a little more adventurous, New Year’s resolutions can cover just about every ..... 
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Journal Writing Project: Secret Santa

By Alexis Jorgensen

Mon, Dec 22nd, 2014
Posted in Lanesboro Journal Student Writing Project

By Alexis Jorgensen Lanesboro is a truly unique community with a very fun atmosphere year round. Many people are aware of Lanesboro’s various town festivities such as Buffalo Bill Days, Rhubarb Fest, and Art in the Park, but the activities that ..... 
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