Food, sex, wealth, these are the things of the devil? So why do all our righteous leaders have them?
They have recently identified a reflex in the brain that when stimulated triggers a drive to persist. It’s located in a space roughly between the frontal lobe and the upper part of the amygdala which means it’s directly linked to our conscious thinking and our emotions at the same time, and it’s on a circuit that has as its primary driving chemical signal the hormone known as cortisol.
Do you know what cortisol is? It’s the chemical behind stress. The brain releases it when an experience needs to be flagged as life or death so we remember that we actually have to run from that mountain lion when it’s chasing us. Now normally the fight or flight response inhibits the conscious mind. When you are super scared can you think really carefully or remember details easily?
I find I get tunnel vision when fighting in games. I can lower the graphics down all the way and I won’t notice.
Adrenaline, is that a hormone the brain releases? Ah, the adrenal glands just above the kidneys release adrenaline that alters the cardiovascular system, and your general metabolism, but doesn’t itself directly affect the brain. The brain has its own version of adrenaline, though, called noradrenaline, which is produced in a region in the brain stem. This is why intense stress so commonly gives you a stiff neck.
Yes, and head ache.
Our conscious thinking, and our frontal lobe thinking in general, has one primary function. Do you know what it is? Inhibition. It blocks and sorts emergent memories and wide ranging stimuli. This process is what we are talking about when we say we are trying to make sense of something. We isolate various signals from different parts of our brain and sort through them until we recognize a relevant matching pattern. Your brain regularly triggers recall of learning to ride your bicycle which your conscious mind blocks because it’s usually not relevant to whatever you are doing.
Well, we in today’s world have become very well trained in making our frontal lobe work. We, with great anxiety, drive it to constantly mix and match signals. We are conditioned to be desperate for control. Contemporary science reflects this, at least the mainstream schools of thought do. It’s the essence of being “rational.” Rational is to ration out or moderate, modulate every process going on in your mind as if you were morally obligated to do so. Is it our duty to moderate and censor every process occurring in our minds?
Yes, according to society norms? Yes, and society values the individual very little.
The natural individual, yes.
I think this is why I enjoy time alone…so I can just relax. Self modulation makes you more easily subject to suggestion. They have even tested this in labs. They call it availability bias. They just have to tell you things when you aren’t really thinking about it. Your brain pretty easily accepts and believes it because you heard it somewhere. You have been well trained.
I sometimes find myself putting up with things and then looking back and wondering how I could put up with that.
Well, to get to the meat of today’s topic… my talks tend to have a long explanatory buildup some times but I will make the connection I promise.
Many assumptions in psychiatry and neuroscience reflect socialized bias more than actual objective observation. Previously, it was assumed that swearing when you suffered pain was a form of catastrophizing, over exaggerating the experience, and they theorized that it would worsen the sense of pain, amplify it because you are giving more resources to it, I guess. There was no real testing to confirm this. It just made sense to their thinking. What do you think of this?
But the pressure needs to come out. I am not saying we should swear but holding it makes mine worse.
I think it’s the opposite.
They have finally tested it, and they have discovered that swearing reduces sensitivity to pain. Our instinctive response is not the abnormal maladaptive reaction they insisted it was. Many of the supposed glitches of the human brain, I offer, are nothing of the kind. We have only to look back at our ancestors to see the truth of it as well as the benefit, and I will elaborate on swearing…
Your thoughts are welcome. Be well friends.