I started this blog back in 2005 as a response to a lack of understanding and/or coping with other people’s cruelty, especially within the relationship context, both romantic and professional.

I think I have reached a conclusion of sorts …

All cruelty is the product of the amygdala and it’s unconscious interventions and manipulations that pull the strings of our consciousness and influence our perceptions and behaviour in order to escape, evade and avoid our fears, whether these fears are conscious or unconscious, whether real or imagined, whether existing or existential.

The problem is compounded in individuals who during the development of their brain, experienced high or prolonged levels of stress, causing pathways in their brains to break down or not develop properly, that would normally regulate the amygdala with what we commonly refer to as conscience. it is suggested that one of the key features of conscience, in the structure of the brain, is the anterior cingulate, located in the orbitofrontal cortex.

With a poorly developed anterior cingulate, they may lack the ability to stop themselves from bad or destructive behaviour, and may, to some extent, lack the function, afterwards, or the facility, to feel guilt or remorse, such as in the case of the sociopath or psychopath.

Without the facility to properly regulate the impulses, perceptions and reactions of the amygdala, the amygdala, in it’s place as one of the earliest parts of the brain to develop, and at the very core of our brains, can at times of stress, take the helm of the personality to steer it away from anything that it perceives threatens the survival, emotionally, psychologically or physically, of the organism. It is aided by it’s ability to enlist memory and imagination in order to tell a story about environment or situation that can then be fed to conscious areas of the brain to rationalise and justify behaviour that from outside observation may appear inexcusable or in fact damn right evil. This is the underlying mechanism for self deception, denial and repression.

All cruelty is a reaction to fear.