Mind Games

History.  I’m back in it.  After a semester of living in a monastery and living in history, I am back to small-town Massachusetts studying it.  In some ways, I will learn more from this semester than I did last semester.  In others, I will learn less.

But what I learned (or re-learned) today: the disciplines of history really isn’t just one discipline.  It is a combination of disciplines.  Which is why a degree in history is so versatile and valuable.  The skills you acquire in history can help you in almost any field of life.  The discipline that I discovered history encroaching upon today is the world of psychology.

History and the events that took place to shape history as we know it really is the product of a lot of mind games going on between the people involved.  Take the Cold War: US and Britain paranoid of Soviets, Soviets paranoid of US, they build, and boom (or, not boom, in this case) but you get a freeze of tensions between all three world powers.  Or Nixon: paranoia of the press makes him invade his enemy’s office.  Busted.  Bummer.

Moral of the story: people and their minds and plans are not a known quantity.  They can always change.

Thus, history is also psychology.

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