Stress-God-and the human brain.


A very interesting article regarding the physical responses when the subject is confronted by different data, including God and Religion:

James Brewer takes a seat beside me in a café at the San Diego Convention Center, where we are both attending the largest neuroscience meeting in the world: thirty thousand brains researching brains. With his balding head, bright eyes, and baby cheeks, Brewer, a neurologist at the University of California at San Diego, looks like a large and curious toddler. An unlikely messenger, perhaps, in what for me is now a moment of truth. I had undergone a series of diagnostic procedures in his laboratory, and now, inside the laptop he has placed on the table, are the results of my brain tests.

“Your brain is shrinking,” he says.

This is the last thing I expected to hear. Not me, a man who considers himself healthy and ageless, at least in his own, er, mind.

“People’s brains begin to shrink when they are in their thirties,” Brewer explains with a smile, to suggest this isn’t really a big deal. “Yours is about average.”



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8 responses to “Stress-God-and the human brain.

  1. The linked article says, “Through his research, Gazzaley has set out to prove that the brain does not lose its ability to remember as it ages but rather loses its ability to filter out unwanted memories; in a sense it remembers too much.”

    Comforting sentence, although what good does it do to have the knowledge or the memory if you can’t retrieve it?

  2. lilacluvr

    I worked for a neurosurgeon a few years ago and he always told me the brain is like the last frontier in medicine. There are many things the researchers are discovering every day which can help to explain many other unanswered questions.

    People only use 10% of their brain. Just imagine what we could accomplish if we could open up the other 90%.

    The question is, do we really want to know what the other 90% could tell us? I think there are certain groups of people in our society that would rather have people ignorant. Ignorance can make the few very wealthy.

    • jammer5

      lila, I think the 10% use of the brain is a myth. I read a couple of articles years ago where science showed we do use 100% of our brains. I wish I could link them, as they were both very persuasive. I believe the 10% myth started with a misquote of Einstein.

      There is a truth we don’t use 100% of our brain at any given time, and may in fact only use 1 or 2% at any given time. But to put it in perspective: we don’t use 100% of lung capacity all the time, and very seldom ever do use that much. I would bet while sitting here at the computer I am using 40 to 50% of my lung capacity. I think that translates into brain usage.

      As you said, the brain is the last frontier, and understanding it is still in its infancy. It is the most fascinating organ in the human body.

      • lilacluvr

        Thanks for the input jammer …and after reading my posting again, I realized that it sounded like I meant we only have access to the 10%, when I know we have the capability of using the entire brain.

        But I still have to wonder if people would really want to use their brain 100% all of the time? Or are we wired to only use the percentage that is required for any given task we are trying to accomplish?

        When I think of how some people are so easily led by others (like in my example of the few wealthy preferring people to be ignorant) ; is it because these people choose to be led rather than to think for themselves? Do people have the control to not use their brain completely to reason things out?

        For example, I find the people that listen to Rush Limbaugh and follow his every word like it is the Word of God to be on the ignorant side of the brain pool.

        But these same people would say that I am the ignorant one for not liking Rush. Who is to say who is right?

        But, the brain is fascinating and I don’t think the researchers have even begun to tap into its capabilities.

  3. wicked

    Just goes to show what I’ve always said is true. The older I get, the more junk there is to filter through. And if my brain is shrinking, it’s getting too crowded up there, making finding information that much harder.

    Will reading the full article add to the already full capacity?

    Nah, I’m pretty empty-headed. 😉

  4. iggydonnelly

    Excellent thread, Jammer. Of course, I like stuff like this. Thank you.

  5. tosmarttobegop

    It is part of dealing on a more immediate level with mom, at 78 she is like said remembering things in too rapid a manor. Often without a cause she recalls things that are out of place with what is going on at the moment. She will then go on and on about something that I am well aware of. And often telling me as if I was not aware it happen and is about me.

    She is so thirst for current happenings that she is often asking questions that I have no idea about. Most of what she thinks and knows about G.W. Bush she got from the likes of the National enquirer. Still convinced that George and Lara are getting a divorce because George is a sloppy drunk. Or Lara has had enough of the affair George has with Condi Rice.

    We would explode if we ever were to use 100% of our brain to think as we do with the 10%.

  6. jammer5

    Learning how the brain operates could lead to a cure for Alzheimer, the most heart breaking disease known to man.

    My mom went into the hospital with pancreatitus, a horribly painful disease. She was on Morphine and Demerol. Her mind went out the window for awhile, with her talking to the wall hours on end. I think she flipped as much when her mind came back, and she couldn’t figure out where it went. We told her her secrets were safe, and whomever McDuff was, he was probably an ahole. That brought her back to reality, with sense of humor intact.