Are we free-thinking or pre-programmed?

I’m currently starting the process of researching and planning my next novel. It is a process I always enjoy since it means I can allow my imagination free-flow and come up with an assortment of ideas before eliminating the wildest and wackiest. I’m particularly enjoying it this time as I haven’t written any new material for over six months and I’m getting withdrawal symptoms.

That’s not to say I haven’t been busy. Aside from all the Internet marketing that remains a necessity, I’ve edited three books, all of which are getting closer to publication. It can be a laborious task, but it is essential and there is no time for a lazy or lax attitude. Thankfully, it’s finally nearing its end.

So, on to my next mystery/thriller. All I’m willing to say right now is that it involves identical twins, and that’s where my research is taking me. I’m looking at personality traits, and whether they’re genetic or not. It’s a fascinating subject. Views of scientists differ greatly, although from what I’ve read so far, it appears that about 40% of our behaviour is genetically influenced, with some areas being more influenced than others, such as self-control, a person’s sense of purpose, social interaction, and happiness.

How does that make us feel? If we are programmed a certain way, is there any point in fighting nature? Are we a born loser or a born winner?

For example:

I am rarely happy – it’s just how I am.
I have had an affair – I have little self-control.
I am unemployed – I have a lack of sense of purpose and struggle with motivation.
I enjoy more than the average amount of alcohol – alcoholic tendencies are genetically linked.

Some families do have more divorces, more job instability, and more of an addictive nature than others. Is this why? From what I have read, it does appear that there could be a link. Studying identical twins is what has helped scientists reach some of these conclusions. Even those twins raised apart and having never met have more similarities than what would be expected from a random meeting of two strangers. Now that is bizarre. Perhaps we aren’t as free-thinking as we thought.

 

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About Honor A Dawson

I live in a rural location with my husband, dogs, cats and chickens. I love reading and writing, watching and playing tennis, and wildlife and nature.

Posted on April 17, 2014, in Lifes Challenges, My books and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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