Re: Boredom is evil?

Anders Sandberg (
Thu, 6 Feb 1997 13:47:26 +0100 (MET)

On Wed, 5 Feb 1997, Robert Schrader wrote:

> Although I reflexively tend to agree with Pearce about the connection
> between boredom and evil, the belief in it is not due to hyperactive
> dopaminergic pathways. I am a counterexample; I take have to take
> dopamine precursors such as tyrosine just to avoid being hypoactive.
> I suspect that the agreement is motivated more by aesthetic sensibility
> than neurotransmitter functioning.

I think aversion to boredom is more complex than simply overactive
dopaminergic pathways (if we ignore novelty-seeking behavior linked to
D2), and might very well be due to cognitive or aesthetic factors. Still,
what do we know about the neurochemistry of boredom? It would seem to me
that it would be quite reasonable to postulate some system that reacts to
low levels of novelty or progress, and starts signalling other systems
with a need for change.

Anders Sandberg Towards Ascension!
GCS/M/S/O d++ -p+ c++++ !l u+ e++ m++ s+/+ n--- h+/* f+ g+ w++ t+ r+ !y