Cognitive Pearl #050 Adar 4, 5775 February 23, 15

Often overlooked, at least among those interested in cognitive therapy and cognitive psychology, is the world of aesthetics. This is unfortunate; as we will learn, art and aesthetics has great transformative power specifically because of the cognitive processes which they evoke. In honor of the weekly Torah readings and their devotion to the design of the Mishkan, it’s equipment, and the clothes worn by those who served in that holy space, the following posts will be devoted to some ideas about the aesthetic experience. Most importantly we’ll consider some of the practical ways to integrate aesthetics into practice. 

Many of the ideas which I will raise are drawn from the writings of the celebrated neurologist V.S.Ramachandran of the Center For Brain and Cognition, University of California, San Diego as well as the philosopher Thomas Metzinger of the University of Mainz. Their work is enlightening, fun, and very relevant to anyone who wants to be an effective cognitive therapist.