Ted Kennedy: Is Love the Answer?

During our interview with him, Big Think asked Ted Kennedy to give his counsel: the primary lesson he had learned, the key insight one should take away from his historic life. It is a question we ask often, and usually one that sends interviewees through stages of stuttering, dithering, and occasional fraught silence. You can’t blame most people for being slow to respond to such a loaded question, but Ted was different: he had his answer instantly.

“The answer is love,” Ted told us. He was completely assured: too often we get caught up in personal concerns, when the central fact of humanity is our communal nature. If we recognize that we are all connected, and assume the responsibilities associated with that understanding, life is easy.

It might be natural to wish that someone of such a storied history would have a more unique insight, but in several studies, Kennedy’s advice has borne out to be true—those who maintain strong relationships are happier and live better lives. In fact, neuroscientist and author of Loneliness: Human Nature and the Need for Social Connection John Cacioppo talked to Big Think in depth last year about how social connections improve happiness.

So, take it from a political legend and a neuroscientist (and The Beatles …) – all you need is love.

LinkedIn meets Tinder in this mindful networking app

Swipe right to make the connections that could change your career.

Getty Images
Swipe right. Match. Meet over coffee or set up a call.

No, we aren't talking about Tinder. Introducing Shapr, a free app that helps people with synergistic professional goals and skill sets easily meet and collaborate.

Keep reading Show less

What’s behind our appetite for self-destruction?

Is it "perverseness," the "death drive," or something else?

Photo by Brad Neathery on Unsplash
Mind & Brain

Each new year, people vow to put an end to self-destructive habits like smoking, overeating or overspending.

Keep reading Show less

Physicists puzzled by strange numbers that could explain reality

Eight-dimensional octonions may hold the clues to solve fundamental mysteries.

Surprising Science
  • Physicists discover complex numbers called octonions that work in 8 dimensions.
  • The numbers have been found linked to fundamental forces of reality.
  • Understanding octonions can lead to a new model of physics.
Keep reading Show less

Douglas Rushkoff – It’s not the technology’s fault

It's up to us humans to re-humanize our world. An economy that prioritizes growth and profits over humanity has led to digital platforms that "strip the topsoil" of human behavior, whole industries, and the planet, giving less and less back. And only we can save us.

Think Again Podcasts
  • It's an all-hands-on-deck moment in the arc of civilization.
  • Everyone has a choice: Do you want to try to earn enough money to insulate yourself from the world you're creating— or do you want to make the world a place you don't have to insulate yourself from?
Keep reading Show less