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The evolutionary science behind charity
That’s what Dr. Stephen G. Post calls it.
He’s director of the Center for Medical Humanities, Compassionate Care and Bioethics at New York’s Stony Brook University. He’s also the best-selling author of Why Good Things Happen to Good People and a distinguished researcher who’s published more than 300 peer-reviewed articles in places such as the New England Journal of Medicine.
As Post noted to reporter, Elizabeth Renter, the act of giving “doles out several different happiness chemicals.”
“These include  dopamine,  endorphins that give people a sense of euphoria, and  oxytocin, which is associated with tranquility, serenity or inner peace.”
Her 2015 US News and World Report article further explains: “This pleasure and reward system evolved some 1 to 2 billion years ago, and at its most basic level, is tied to the joy we receive from eating, sex and social interactions. Viewing the brain with MRI technology during moments of generosity or selfless behavior has led scientists to uncover that even the thought of giving can engage this ancient response.”