The Tension Podcast
#9 - Patrick Miller: Putting Truth Over Tribe (Part 1)

#9 - Patrick Miller: Putting Truth Over Tribe (Part 1)

The Social Media Divide: Straining Family Ties

The conversation kicks off with a chilling account of how social media is becoming the battleground for family feuds. Social platforms, where algorithms are designed to keep you engaged, fuel existing tensions to the point where family members disinvite each other from weddings or even boycott funerals.

The Power and Peril of Algorithms

Patrick Miller emphasizes how these algorithms, run by machine learning on vast neural networks, exploit human weaknesses for outrage and anger. By effectively "hooking" users with content tailored to their psychological triggers, these algorithms risk driving a wedge between family and friends.

The Psychology of Tribalism: Intriguing Research Findings

The episode takes a turn into the academic realm as Patrick recounts various psychological studies. These studies, starting from the 1950s, unveil human beings' innate tendency towards tribalism. Even adults can resort to tribal behavior with minimal provocation, proving that it takes almost nothing to "flip the tribal switch" in our heads.

The Biochemistry of Tribalism: The Oxytocin Paradox

The narrative delves into the fascinating role of oxytocin, commonly known as the "love drug," in tribal behavior. While oxytocin strengthens bonds within a group, it paradoxically heightens antagonism towards outsiders, making it a double-edged sword in the context of tribalism.

The Christian Perspective: Finding the Right Tribe

In the concluding segment, Patrick Miller articulates a Christian viewpoint on tribalism, stating that the goal is not to become anti-tribal but to join the 'right tribe.' According to him, Jesus's tribe is the only one that embraces diversity and exists for the sake of others, providing a way to turn the dark aspects of tribalism into something positive.

Closing Remarks and Teaser for Part Two

Tim Sweetman wraps up the episode, hinting at the intriguing content lined up for part two of the discussion. He also urges listeners to leave reviews and find more information about The Tension Podcast online.

These segments collectively offer a panoramic view of tribalism, its roots in human psychology and social media algorithms, and possible solutions from a Christian perspective.


Extra Resources

Tribalism in Social Media:

Social Media Algorithms and Addiction:

Oxytocin and Relationships:

Psychological Effects of Tribalism:

Consequences of Online Debates in Real Life:

The Eagles and the Ratlers Study:

Andre Tashval's Study on Minimal Group Paradigm:

Christian Perspective on Tribalism:

Truth Over Tribes Concept:

The Tension Podcast by Tim Sweetman:

The Tension Podcast
The Tension Podcast is for those of us who’ve read every single leadership book and article that gives us just only one way to do things — but we’re ready to hold opposing ideas at once. It’s an exploration of where curiosity and wonder can take us.