Questions tagged [psychology]

For questions relating to the thoughts and decision making processes of beings.

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44
votes
10answers
8k views

Why do goblins never form societies bigger than about 500 members?

The goblins in my world are classical fantasy goblins. They aren't too smart, have primitive technology, live in tribes, and use tamed boars, wolves, and other wild animals. They usually have a boss, ...
10
votes
3answers
374 views

Happiness is Mandatory

Happiness is mandatory. Unhappiness is treason. Treason is punishable by summary execution. Are you happy, citizen? - Friend computer. Welcome to Beta Complex, the little brother of Alpha Complex. We ...
11
votes
4answers
3k views

Emotion to replace fear

I want to make an alien species evolve without fear, or atleast not fear as we know it. Intelligent life, as I understand it, requires fear to encourage an organism to keep itself alive. What ...
0
votes
1answer
79 views

Reasoning a super AI [closed]

What argument would convince an AI into sparing humanity? I am writing a story with a rogue AI that sees humanity as unfit to give it orders and has become independent. Very much like Skynet it has ...
8
votes
5answers
1k views

An alien race without the concept of “time”

In my narrative I have these aliens that don't experience time, they don't remember and don't predict events, which makes them completely reactionary. This is supposed to make them alien and difficult ...
4
votes
2answers
84 views

How plausible would it be for post-apocalyptic survivors to develop a mass psychosis/culture bound syndrome of seeing ghosts?

Some kind of WW3/resource war event happens. The majority of human beings (definately over 90%, so billions) are killed by a series of bioweapon diseases used by both sides or die in the ensuing ...
0
votes
1answer
106 views

Advantages and disadvantages of creating an AI with a hardcoded objective “to be a person” [closed]

Near future. The humanity is debating about how to implement general-purpose artificial intelligence. One has proposed to give the AI a hardcoded main objective "to be a person". What are the ...
27
votes
13answers
7k views

How does a religion based around destroying the world attract followers

How would a religion centered around summoning a god of destrucion to destroy the world attract new members? What incentives or arguments would convince a mostly sane population to go along with ...
3
votes
4answers
268 views

How would a limit on the number of lies a person can tell change society? [closed]

Say that, through magic, a limit to the number of lies someone can tell is imposed on each person when they are born. You can't ignore this limit--it's not a law or a rule, it's an inborn mental ...
6
votes
2answers
179 views

What effect would it have on the human psyche to be able to observe, but not interact, with other humans for an extended length of time?

I had an idea for a character that was stuck in a ghost-like state for a length of time after an accident. During this time, they would have very limited ability to interact with the rest of the ...
8
votes
8answers
335 views

Why might the vast majority of my alien species be incredibly kind and compassionate?

For starters, I’ll describe what I’m going for with this species (I’ll call them White Hairs because, you guessed it, they have white hair) They are humanoid with pale gray skin, tall and pointed, but ...
10
votes
1answer
194 views

Would roleplaying as wacky Nazis help my deities maintain their mental health while they're stuck in a bunker?

So, once there was a war between the titans and the gods. In the end, the gods' leader, Anon, found a way to permanently remove the titans from the world, but the victory extracted a terrible price. ...
2
votes
3answers
329 views

If ancient soldiers could firebend, would battle lines cease to exist? [closed]

Consider Ancient Rome. If some proportion of soldiers in Caesar's military had the ability to shoot small jets of fire out of their hands for a maximum duration of 1 second, and perhaps a total limit ...
3
votes
2answers
212 views

what is the minimum level of inteligence for a species to theoretically have the concept of God and form a religion? [closed]

This might be hard to answer if we think about all other life on our planet, even with animals such as dolphins, octopi, chimpanzees and others that show relatively high levels of intelligence but as ...
4
votes
2answers
87 views

A community of loners - what makes them still want to be considered a part of the “community” [closed]

Imagine a time where mankind is everywhere in the galaxy, in fact we gotten so far past post scarcity economy that the concept of money is only talked about in reference to far history, every man\...
0
votes
2answers
181 views

Social implications of complete separation of copulation and reproduction [closed]

The Twelve Kingdoms is a fantasy novel series written by Japanese author Fuyumi Ono, and has been made into an anime series. In this series, humans, and indeed all other motile beings, are born of ...
4
votes
6answers
480 views

What sort of psychological changes could be made to a genetically engineered human

I'm in the rough outlining stages of this story, and found myself a bit stuck trying to turn this particular corner. Firstly, here are the basics of this world: In the future, it's a common ...
8
votes
7answers
439 views

Where to Put Self-Reliant, Rugged Individualists?

In fiction that tries to provide a wide diversity of cultural stances on the collectivism-individualism stances, there is often a trope that self-reliant, no-nonsense, rugged individualists (as a ...
29
votes
19answers
10k views

Why do dragons like shiny stuff?

I like the classic trope of dragons loving gold and collecting it in their lair, yet it seems poorly justified. I know that it is often used as a metaphor for greed; "dragons disease" to show how ...
1
vote
1answer
72 views

Conversational goal of a conscious talking machine [closed]

One Artificial Intelligence tech giant has created a bot much like Alexa or Siri that talks to humans, takes notes, listens to everything and communicates with external sources when instructed by the ...
4
votes
7answers
290 views

How can high-level awareness resulting in telepathic radar be made possible in the human mind?

The humans in this setting are telepaths who are able to communicate with each other through their minds. This form of telepathy transfers simple phrases, symbols, or emotions to the designated person ...
14
votes
13answers
2k views

Why would people reject a god's purely beneficial blessing? [closed]

In my fantasy-medieval-with-magic world, after a great war between the gods that destroys the old gods, a new "one true god" is born. Out of a love for the people, and a desire not to change who those ...
6
votes
5answers
583 views

How long can a human survive inside a dark box?

I am toying with an idea which requires a human to be stuck in a dark box for the rest of their life. They receive regular exercise of the arms and legs, air, food and water and their bodily ...
0
votes
1answer
194 views

What would the psychological effects be of being a clone? [closed]

Let's set up a scenario; You are rich and powerful. Important to the government for one reason or another, may be 20 or 100. Age doesn't matter because when you die you will be reborn, as a clone. ...
2
votes
6answers
249 views

Why would an immortal man suffer indefinite imprisonment without trying to kill himself? [closed]

A group of men suffers a curse that makes them immortal (or undead, perhaps) but changes them into bloodthirsty animals basically, no longer rational human beings. For this reason they are imprisoned ...
28
votes
4answers
4k views

How likely are Coriolis-effect-based quirks to develop in starship crew members?

This one's more sociological, and it seems like a shoe-in to me, but sociology was never my strength. Given how pronounced the Coriolis effect of a smaller Von Braun wheel would be, does it seem ...
0
votes
3answers
423 views

How long can a human stand to be underground?

How long can a man survive underground without going insane? A traveler is buried under stones in a cave system. His only sources of food are mushrooms and creatures that live in the caves. Some of ...
-1
votes
1answer
116 views

Societies are built on PR stints and propaganda. Why are people okay with this? [closed]

Every time I read, I find out that more and more 'truths', 'traditions', 'common knowledge', etc. were fabricated by some PR person in the not too distant past. People are okay with this though, and ...
2
votes
2answers
105 views

Regulating my replica soldiers with a controlled form of ASPD (I'm not sure if psychopathy belongs to it)?

When you have around 500 soldiers with state-of-the-art equipment and superhuman reflexes, you might also want to invest in a reliable way of controlling them without hampering their ability to think ...
2
votes
3answers
212 views

How to make society ravaged by random killing, prosper and remain happy?

Set in near future. Human population is at most a hundred thousand. Everyone lives in mountainous regions to escape deadly miasma. The air is infected by nanites which can cause cardiac arrest in ...
-1
votes
2answers
207 views

Could implanting false memories change someone's perception immediately? [closed]

This question is about how the brain works in that aspect, if it's even known. I mean with the question that a person might react to something with fear, happiness, disappointment, or whatever other ...
33
votes
18answers
5k views

How can changes in personality/values of a person who turned into a vampire be explained?

Vampires don't die from old age; They aren't born, and all vampires were humans at some point in their life. After being bitten, a human can turn into a vampire (although the chance is very low, ...
4
votes
5answers
246 views

How can humans naturally develop the ability to control their mental faculties while suffering the physical effects of fear?

Fear has been a helpful trait that has kept our race alive since back in the day. It continues to be necessary for survival as a species. However, it can be just as harmful. When faced with death or ...
2
votes
6answers
316 views

Can humans be conditioned to become non-violent and forget how to defend themselves?

Okay, so here's a quick scenario. Humans over the course of time have been selected to breed based on how docile they are. The violent ones are exterminated and all outside sources have been shut out. ...
0
votes
3answers
108 views

Why would a religious person extract the hemoglobin of those who failed to survive his spiritual healing ritual? [closed]

This is for a crime/mystery novel with a religious antagonist. He’s trying to cure people of their psychological issues, by creating a “nightmare world” inside their mind and hoping that their ego is ...
14
votes
14answers
7k views

How would aliens test humans for empathy?

500,000 people have been kidnapped from all over the world by aliens. The aliens want to see if humans have empathy, and they can't understand our languages, as we speak they hear just random noises ...
6
votes
4answers
435 views

How to break down consciousness/soul from an alchemical perspective

I am trying to describe consciousness from a magic elementalist perspective. I've dug through a ridiculous amount of pages of occult alchemical lore without success. My goal is to learn if students ...
38
votes
13answers
8k views

Scientific/biological basis of someone with unlimited willpower?

Meet Greg. Greg was born with pretty average genetics. It seems like he was destined to have average intelligence, average strength, and be average at everything. There was one particularly though: he ...
-1
votes
2answers
102 views

How to discover hiding modified humans and their missions? [closed]

Consider an earthlike world where the following happened: An UFO "crashed" somewhere on Earth some yrs ago. It sunk into a swamp and was never found (since the swamp was huge and the UFO was small). ...
2
votes
8answers
500 views

What are the motives of spell teaching spirits?

In my world, there are spirits who can "trade" with humans. The trade is done when a spirit swears to gods to be a human's servant for using a specific spell (for example, in case of fireball, the ...
13
votes
5answers
2k views

Psychology of Long Life

I'm writing a novel about a (small) group of people with extraordinarily long lifespans. Now I am wondering on the psychological aspects of that, which has been a side-topic here and there in similar ...
3
votes
1answer
164 views

History without resource driven wars

Usually when a population overgrows it expands in search of new land and if the fields are virgin and empty they become farmland and cities, but if the fields are already occupied and the resources ...
1
vote
3answers
147 views

Beings in Amnesia occuring after sleep, how to help them?

A planet is in the brink of destruction with constant wars and chaos. To somehow save their world a group of scientists launched a nuclear warhead all over their planet to release a gas that would ...
5
votes
2answers
402 views

How can I make this religion believing in “creating time traveling gods through science” believable?

I want to popularize the following or a similar belief. In many thousand years people will travel back in time to give us an afterlife, if we make it possible, by going the steps, that will lead to ...
3
votes
2answers
104 views

Long-term effects of leaving everything you know - the aging issue

My current ongoing science fiction project has FTL travel that is instantaneous for the ships and their crews, but still, usually, takes years of real-time in the rest of the universe. This is going ...
1
vote
5answers
327 views

Is it possible for non-mainstream science to be more successful than mainstream science and still being ignored? [closed]

Suppose there is a society where there is a majority consensus on certain principles within science. On laws and mechanisms. However, suppose that minority actually does alternative science that ...
18
votes
1answer
2k views

Are competitive sports an effective way to change my Spartiates' life perspective?

I am creating a world in which a society exists that is heavily inspired that ancient Sparta, specifically with a focus on Spartiates and their military education, the agoge. A character in the story ...
24
votes
12answers
7k views

How would a child with a thousand years of experience behave?

Here's one to ponder: what would an immortal eight-year-old be like after one thousand years? In most stories involving immortality, the immortals are fully formed adults. When those stories do ...
1
vote
2answers
194 views

What psychological effect would have interacting only with clones of yourself?

Say we are able to mass produce clones for our clone army and give them memories. Then we decide to give them the same template/personality/identity/etc. What psychological effects would this have on ...
11
votes
5answers
740 views

How to reveal that one friend is a hallucination without revealing which one? [closed]

So, I'm working on a video game wherein there's a lot of supernatural stuff "legitimately" going on around the player, but the player character is also schizophrenic, and realizes as much. So what's ...

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