A new study of 1,024 mammal species has determined which animals are the most vicious killers of their own kind. Killer whales perhaps? Pit bulls maybe? For the answer, just look in the mirror.
Witches have thrived through the centuries, and today many women still practice witchcraft. I’ve met a few. Peering by flickering candle light at dimly lit Tarot cards a self-proclaimed witch read my fortune one foggy night in New Orleans years ago. She predicted that one day I would write for Huffington Post. No, just kidding about the Huffington Post part, but she and her fellow Wiccans were an intriguing group of right-brained ladies. Cloaked in a cloud of patchouli vapor, adorned with crystal pendants and clutching strange totems, these sensitive women fully embrace the supernatural mysteries of the natural world. Witches worship and harness the mysterious power that is unique to the female sex (and brain). But listening to her divine my fate that night, it was clear to me that neuroscience, not the supernatural, are what witches, witchcraft, and witch hunts are all about.
“I am a scientist who enjoys bird watching and canoeing.”
“Interesting!” she thinks.
Then she scrolls to the next profile; also a scientist:
“I enjoy white water kayaking, and I study alligators in the wild.”
She passes on you with your canoe, and in eager anticipation sends the kayaker an electronic “wink.”
This, according to a study by psychologist John Petraitis, is what most women will do, but why?
Psychologists have many cleaver tests to ascertain personality traits. Now, according to a study published in the journal Aggressive Behavior, the shrinks have a new tool in their diagnostic kit: a 6-inch ruler.
Leander van der Meij and colleagues at the Department of Psychology in The Netherlands report a finding that seems more rooted in mysticism of the palm reading parlor than in science from a laboratory, but there is good biological evidence to back up their conclusion: two measurements of a man’s hand can predict how aggressive and domineering he will be.