At 2/13/13 01:58 AM, Ceratisa wrote:
Seriously, comparing human-level consciousness to a mouse brain.. that has to be a joke.You don't understand anatomy if you think that is a joke.
Even basic (assumed) similarity of mouse and human anatomy have proven false.
âEUoeThis is a game changerâEU
"It helps explain why every one of nearly 150 drugs tested at a huge expense in patients with sepsis has failed. The drug tests all were based on studies in mice. And mice, it turns out, can have something that looks like sepsis in humans, but is very different from the condition in humans."
âEUoeThey were so used to doing mouse studies that they thought that was how you validate things,âEU he said. âEUoe.âEU
âEUoeThat started us thinking.. Is it the same in the mouse or not?âEU
The group decided to look, expecting to find some similarities.
But when the data was analyzed, there were none at all.
âEUoeWe were kind of blown away,âEU
You mean the pathways we form just by thinking?
...Neuroplasticity. Which can alter the very way our brain functions through mental stimulation and exercises.
The way our traditional education system works is that we spend (on average) about 20 years having stuff poured into our brains in classroom settings. We head off to class everyday not expecting to be challenged unless there's an expected test. If you think of the brain as a sponge, designed simply to mop up knowledge then that's fine. And this is certainly true when we are young..
"Once the child is born, the billions of neurons start to interact with each other creating neural pathways within the nervous system. Since each individual neuron can make at least 15,000 new connections, there are infinite amount of connections and circuitry can be established to form a childâEUTMs experience and capabilities. The reason behind this is because the brain is the most malleable during these early years."
The implication here is that the brain becomes much malleable with age. When taught formally for 20 years it becomes almost rigid. It may also depends on what you do with your free time, but many of us are "sponges" at home as much as when in school because that is what society valued the most. And knowledge of many subjects is great, but it is wasted without the creative spark needed to synthesize that knowledge. Today this problem is best expressed as "Who needs years and years of memorized knowledge when i have Google or Wikipedia always at my fingertips?"
So where does our creative spark come from? This is what we're really asking when talking about mental stimulation and exercises. Here we can look back to one of the most creative individuals of our age; Einstein said âEUoeWhen I examine myself and my methods of thought, I come to the conclusion that the gift of fantasy has meant more to me than my talent for absorbing positive knowledge.âEU
And what is Fantasy? For most of us it's when we dream at night. We're able to let go our conscious minds and drift off into an unconscious creative state. There we evaluate our past, present and future in very uncontrolled and abstract ways. But unfortunately we are left almost completely unaware of the processes and conclusions, except for brief glimpses as we start to return to consciousness when we wake up.
Meditation or drugs on the other hand offer us an ability to journey into a higher abstracted state whilst still retaining conscious control of our thoughts in order to focus on specific ideas. This 'ease of transition' is one appeal of taking drugs.