July 21, 2013


Bright light increases honesty and leads people to perform ethical deeds : It also makes us more ethical and less selfish, researchers say (ROGER DOBSON, 21 JULY 2013, Independent)

Bright lights make people more honest, altruistic and ethical, and less selfish, according to new research. Experiments showed people in a brightly lit room donated more than twice as much as those in a dim room, and were more likely to offer to help others.

"We provide the first experimental evidence showing that brightness appears to heighten the salience of morality to the individual, thereby leading people to perform ethical deeds," say the researchers from National Sun Yat-sen University, Taiwan, who report their findings in the Journal of Environmental Psychology.

God the Father is Brightness (Matthew Hanley, 21 JULY 2013, Catholic Thing)

When was the last time you took notice of the brightness around you? It could have come, perhaps, with a glance out the window, or simply by observing the light flooding into a room.  For most of us, I suspect, it just seems to blend in with everything else. Sometimes, though, even we who see only dimly cannot miss it.

A recent experience: I was alone and "off-trail" in the coastal hills of northern California. It was winter, so the sun hung low. It had just stopped raining, and rays of sun began to light up everything in view, such that every blade of wild grass and every leaf (just so aligned) on the entire forested hillside sparkled as if individually bejeweled.

What made it even better is that I had just been reading some of St. Hildegard of Bingen's letters.  And in them, she - the twelfth-century mystic, and our newest doctor of the Church - provided me with a means of interpreting what I was looking at:

God the Father is brightness, and that brightness is brilliant beyond imagination. Many people try to separate God from his brightness. They see his brightness all around them in the beauty of his creation, but they do not ascribe this beauty to him. This brightness is the Father's love. All things are brought into existence through his love, and we are surrounded by his love.

That's an environmentalism worth promoting - and something to ponder, next time such brightness strikes you.

Posted by at July 21, 2013 6:16 AM

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