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Meta Learning and Evolution

Meta Learning, to a great extent, consists of learning that the environment out there is not the environment our ancestors had to face in order to survive. We have managed to create safer environments, where there are still dangers, but much less than the ones our ancestors faced.

The problem resides in that even if we have changed our environments, we haven’t changed ourselves. Only 1 out of five adults in the USA manages to flourish. This statistic tells us that most people see the world as a dark place. But the harsh environment our ancestors had to deal with is not out there anymore, it is inside us in the form of the negativity bias. Though the negativity bias is a gift from evolution to protect us from dangers, it is an old gift. It has not been updated in our brains. We have to do the updating with the help of others.

In a harsh environment people focus on themselves, they fight for their survival by trying to convince others of their views rather than ask others about theirs, and they are more negative than positive in order to deal with the dangers, real and imaginary. By paying more attention to negativity than positivity we end up trapped in what is called a fixed-point attractor in nonlinear dynamics. A fixed-point attractor is like a black hole, only that this one is not out there in the universe, but inside our heads.

In order to find out what is REALLY out there and not just in our heads, we need to focus on others as much as we focus on ourselves and we need to ask more questions in order to discover what is well and working in our world. If we are able to do this, we can leave the attraction of the fixed-point and be able to see and appreciate what is really out there. By liberating our minds we conquer a new world. This is what we call meta learning.

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