Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Mysteries of the Mind

The Human Brain is one of the most mysterious, wondrous and miraculous things in the known Universe.


Here's a picture to prove it:

The human brain contains 100 billion brain cells called neurons. According to the picture above, it seems we all carry about 100 billion miniature Universe's inside each of own heads. "The Body is a Temple", "God is Within", "Use Your Brain" kind of all make sense now. Or as the 14th Buddha of Compassion, commonly known as the Dalai Lama, would say: "There is no need for temples, no need for complicated philosophies. My brain and my heart are my temples; my philosophy is kindness."

There are so many fascinating facts about the brain that we cannot encompass them all in this post.

Click here to see a list of the top 100 of them.

It has been reported that a Croatian teenager studying German at school fell into a coma (blood poisoning) and awoke 24 hours later unable to speak her native language at all and instead speaks only fluent German. 2 days previously she could barely manage "Hi. My name is" in German and now she communicates perfectly in it. In fact, doctors at the hospital had to bring in a translator to speak with her because everyone at the hospital speaks Croatian!

"Hospital director Dujomir Marasovic said: "You never know when recovering from such a trauma how the brain will react."

Psychiatric expert Dr Mijo Milas added: "In earlier times this would have been referred to as a miracle, we prefer to think that there must be a logical explanation – its just that we haven't found it yet."

This kind of thing has happened before and is called "Foreign Accent Syndrome." This has been documented in over 60 cases between 1941 and 2009. As recently as 2006 an English woman awoke from a coma with a distinctly Jamaican accent.

Again, another "version" of this phenomena is called Xenoglossy. This is where a person without any prior exposure to the foreign language in question wakes up and can speak it fluently. Typically, the languages spoken here are ancient Biblical ones, leading to speculation of reincarnation.

It is a myth that we only use 10% of our brains. In fact the brain represents 3% of our total body weight and yet consumes 20% of our body's energy. It is when we are resting that the 10% comes into play. No pun intended.

Typically, the average human uses every part of the brain at times for certain things.

What's not understood is how clusters of neurons from the diverse regions of the brain collaborate to form consciousness. The 100 billion neurons in the brain comprise only 10% of all brain matter with the other 90% percent of brain matter, called glial cells, encapsulating and supporting the neurons.

"Albert Einstein's brain possessed a greater number of glial cells for each neurone, suggesting his brain needed and used more energy. As a result it may have generated more processing ability. The job of glial cells is to provide support and protection for neurones."

Ancient brain surgery dates back to 3,000 BC with the Ancient Egyptians performing a procedure called trepanning, where a tiny hole is drilled into the head. This procedure is practiced today with groups of people swearing that it enhances brain performance. We think we need that like we need a hole in the head.

Michelangelo, the great artist and sculptor, painted on the Sistine Chapel a perfect replica of the human brain. You have all seen it and might not have known. It is by far his most famous fresco, known as the Hand of God:

You can see how he carefully "hid" the image for over 500 years! In plain sight.

Read more on the Human Brain

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