Right or Wrong “Judgements” Happen Automatically, Unconsciously in 60ms!
People are able to detect, within a split second, if a hurtful action they are witnessing is intentional or accidental…the brain is hard-wired to recognize when another person is being intentionally harmed. “… determining intentionality is the first step in moral computations,”
…within 60 milliseconds, the right posterior superior temporal sulcus (also known as TPJ area), located in the back of the brain, was first activated, with different activity depending on whether the harm was intentional or accidental. It was followed in quick succession by the amygdala, often linked with emotion, and the ventromedial prefrontal cortex (180 milliseconds), the portion of the brain that plays a critical role in moral decision-making. There was no such response in the amygdala and ventromedial prefrontal cortex when the harm was accidental.
The ability to recognize and respond emotionally to the intentional infliction of harm is a critical source of morality that is universal across cultures….”It is part of humans’ evolutionary heritage,” Decety said. “The long history of mammalian evolution has shaped our brains to be sensitive to signs of suffering of others. And this constitutes a natural foundation for morality and sensitivity to justice.” ….emotion and the perception of intentionality, rather than deliberate reasoning, comprise the vital first component of moral responses—at least for responses that stem from care for others…