The Current | Jun 19, 2013 | 23:59

The evolutionary power of Denial

Ajit Varki believes that to really understand how we reached the top of the evolutionary ladder you have to be in denial. He shares his theories on how Denial, Self-Deception and False Beliefs allowed humans to surpass other species, to survive and think.

Now Playing on CBC Radio Help Refresh

Live audio streams for phones and tablets: Radio One and CBC Music (Radio 2, Radio 3 and more)

CBC Radio One

Listen Live Ottawa change

CBC Radio 2

Listen Live Eastern change

CBC Radio 3

Listen Live Radio 3
The Current - Starbucks 'Race Together' campaign stirs up controversy - March 20, 2015Mar 20, 2015 | 21:58The Current Starbucks 'Race Together' campaign stirs up controversy - March 20, 2015 Audio
The Current Starbucks 'Race Together' campaign stirs up controversy - March 20, 2015 Mar 20, 2015 | 21:58Starbucks stores in the U.S. are giving their baristas free rein to talk race with their customers. But the campaign is raising eyebrows — and questions about whether this is the best way engage citizens in an issue that defies simple solutions.
The Current - Referendum should not decide BC transit plan, critics say - March 20, 2015Mar 20, 2015 | 24:59The Current Referendum should not decide BC transit plan, critics say - March 20, 2015 Audio
The Current Referendum should not decide BC transit plan, critics say - March 20, 2015 Mar 20, 2015 | 24:59Residents of Metro Vancouver are voting in a referendum about a major new transportation initiative. But the biggest question in some people's minds isn't the one on the ballot — but whether a referendum is the way to make this kind of decision.
The Current - Tunisia terror attack leaves country on edge - March 20, 2014Mar 20, 2015 | 27:29The Current Tunisia terror attack leaves country on edge - March 20, 2014 Audio
The Current Tunisia terror attack leaves country on edge - March 20, 2014 Mar 20, 2015 | 27:29A deadly terror attack at a Tunis museum raises questions about how to secure Tunisia's future, and consolidate its democratic gains.
The Current - 2 niqabs and a hijab: 3 Muslim women talk about the face covering - March 19, 2015Mar 19, 2015 | 21:59The Current 2 niqabs and a hijab: 3 Muslim women talk about the face covering - March 19, 2015 Audio
The Current 2 niqabs and a hijab: 3 Muslim women talk about the face covering - March 19, 2015 Mar 19, 2015 | 21:59Amid a national debate that's filled the twittersphere and the public square, the voices of Muslim women are often under-represented in the conversation. We hear from a panel of women who wear the niqab — or used to.
The Current - Checking-In on men's rights, Taber's ban on swearing and more - March 19, 2015Mar 19, 2015 | 27:29The Current Checking-In on men's rights, Taber's ban on swearing and more - March 19, 2015 Audio
The Current Checking-In on men's rights, Taber's ban on swearing and more - March 19, 2015 Mar 19, 2015 | 27:29The Current's Friday host David Common joins Anna Maria to sort through some of your feedback on the past stories of the week.
The Current - CAFE's Justin Trottier: not all men's organizations the same - March 19, 2015Mar 19, 2015 | 9:25The Current CAFE's Justin Trottier: not all men's organizations the same - March 19, 2015 Audio
The Current CAFE's Justin Trottier: not all men's organizations the same - March 19, 2015 Mar 19, 2015 | 9:25CAFE founder Justin Trottier says not all men's rights organizations should be painted with the same brush. Earlier this month, the group made headlines when it unveiled a billboard in Toronto to draw attention to male victims of domestic violence.
The Current - Netanyahu wins Israeli election with hardline security stance - March 19, 2015Mar 19, 2015 | 24:59The Current Netanyahu wins Israeli election with hardline security stance - March 19, 2015 Audio
The Current Netanyahu wins Israeli election with hardline security stance - March 19, 2015 Mar 19, 2015 | 24:59After an electoral victory that will make him Israel's longest serving Prime Minister, we're asking what Benjamin Netanyahu's narrow re-election signals for peace in the Middle East.
The Current - Netanyahu wins Israeli election with hardline security stance - March 19, 2015Mar 19, 2015 | 24:59The Current Netanyahu wins Israeli election with hardline security stance - March 19, 2015 Audio
The Current Netanyahu wins Israeli election with hardline security stance - March 19, 2015 Mar 19, 2015 | 24:59After an electoral victory that will make him Israel's longest serving Prime Minister, we're asking what Benjamin Netanyahu's narrow re-election signals for peace in the Middle East.
The Current - Iranian women defy laws, shed hijabs in 'My Stealthy Freedom' campaign - March 19, 2015Mar 19, 2015 | 8:43The Current Iranian women defy laws, shed hijabs in 'My Stealthy Freedom' campaign - March 19, 2015 Audio
The Current Iranian women defy laws, shed hijabs in 'My Stealthy Freedom' campaign - March 19, 2015 Mar 19, 2015 | 8:43Muslim women are fighting to wear the niqab in Canada. But in Iran, women are risking arrest - and even lashes - for trying to take their head coverings off.
The Current - National drug plan could save billions, researchers say - March 18, 2015Mar 18, 2015 | 21:59The Current National drug plan could save billions, researchers say - March 18, 2015 Audio
The Current National drug plan could save billions, researchers say - March 18, 2015 Mar 18, 2015 | 21:59This week, there was a renewed call for a national drug plan to cover the cost of prescription drugs for Canadians. And a new study in the Canadian Medical Association Journal says a national plan could actually save the country billions of dollars.
The Current - ISIS faces infighting, defections, as recruits try to escape - March 18, 2015Mar 18, 2015 | 24:59The Current ISIS faces infighting, defections, as recruits try to escape - March 18, 2015 Audio
The Current ISIS faces infighting, defections, as recruits try to escape - March 18, 2015 Mar 18, 2015 | 24:59The latest victims of ISIS executions may have been ISIS members themselves. We look into reports that fighters who flocked to fight with the group are changing heart, and trying to escape -- though few are getting out alive.
The Current - A North Korean fighter pilot's flight to freedom - March 18, 2015Mar 18, 2015 | 27:28The Current A North Korean fighter pilot's flight to freedom - March 18, 2015 Audio
The Current A North Korean fighter pilot's flight to freedom - March 18, 2015 Mar 18, 2015 | 27:28No Kum Sok was a North Korean military pilot who defected in spectacular fashion. His story, and the story of Kim Il-sung—the man who created a dictatorial dynasty—are woven together in Blaine Harden's new book, The Great Leader and the Fighter Pilot.
The Current - Crimeans happy about union with Russia, polls find - March 17, 2015Mar 17, 2015 | 21:58The Current Crimeans happy about union with Russia, polls find - March 17, 2015 Audio
The Current Crimeans happy about union with Russia, polls find - March 17, 2015 Mar 17, 2015 | 21:58One year after Russia pulled Crimea back under the purview of its government, polling data shows the majority of ethnic Ukrainians and Russians living there like this turn of events. So, was it an act of repression, or a welcome succession?
The Current - Defensive architecture is keeping some people out of public space - March 17, 2015Mar 17, 2015 | 24:58The Current Defensive architecture is keeping some people out of public space - March 17, 2015 Audio
The Current Defensive architecture is keeping some people out of public space - March 17, 2015 Mar 17, 2015 | 24:58From uncomfortable benches to spikes in doorways, as part of our By Design series, we explore how spaces ostensibly made for everyone are welcoming only to some.
The Current - U.S. faith groups try to block access to emergency care for migrants - March 17, 2015Mar 17, 2015 | 25:18The Current U.S. faith groups try to block access to emergency care for migrants - March 17, 2015 Audio
The Current U.S. faith groups try to block access to emergency care for migrants - March 17, 2015 Mar 17, 2015 | 25:18Migrant women and girls from Central America and Mexico face a high risk of sexual assault on their way into the U.S. But recent developments are making it more difficult for these women to receive emergency medical care once they're across the border.

2 of 34