It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.

Please white-list or disable AboveTopSecret.com in your ad-blocking tool.

Thank you.

 

Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.

 

The Master and his Emissary: The Brain Divided

page: 1
8

log in

join
share:

posted on May, 20 2012 @ 06:17 PM
link   


“The intuitive mind is a sacred gift and the rational mind is a faithful servant. We have created a society that honors the servant and has forgotten the gift.” -Albert Einstein



Hi again ATS,

I am deeply interested in the recent developments in brain science from the last 20 years or so and how they are presently re-shaping and enhancing the fields of psychology and biology. I had watched this video on TED and I was excited to find it on YouTube so that I could share it with you all.

Iain McGilchrist is a British psychiatrist, doctor and writer. He is the author of the groundbreaking book The Master and His Emissary: The Divided Brain and the Making of the Western World...




The differing world views of the right and left brain (the "Master" and "emissary" in the title, respectively) have, according to the author, shaped Western culture since the time of the ancient Greek philosopher Plato, and the growing conflict between these views has implications for the way the modern world is changing.

In part, McGilchrist's book, which is the product of twenty years of research, reviews the evidence of previous related research and theories, and based on this and cultural evidence, the author arrives at his own conclusions.

en.wikipedia.org...


ATS, I'm here to tell you, this video is more like a ride than a lecture. The animations are awesome. But it is the content of Iain Gilchrist's presentation that will just blow you away. I had to return to the video more than thrice to get it all together and I am still listening to parts for clarity. If you listen carefully this man is about to virtually upload a slough of philosophy and neuro-science in to your brain in 11 minutes and 50 seconds. Not a bad investment of time on a Sunday afternoon.



I will also link us all up to the full lecture that this was derived from. But before I do I would like to tantalize you with some quotes that I manumitted from the lecture.


"The big thing about humans is their frontal lobes. And the purpose of that part of the brain: to inhibit. To inhibit the rest of the brain; to stop the immediate from happening. So standing back in time and space from the immediacy of experience.

And that enables us to do two things, it enables us to do what neuro-scientists have always told us we are good at; which is outwitting the other party: being Machiavellian. We can read other people's minds and intentions and if we so want to we can deceive them.

But the bit that is always curiously left out here is that it also enables us to empathize. For the first time because there is a sort of necessary distance from the world; if you're right up against it, you just bite. But if you can stand back and see that that other individual is and individual 'like me', who might have interests and values and feelings like mine, you can make a bond. So the distance from the world that is provided (by the frontal cortex) is profoundly creative of all that is human.

-Iain McGilchrist. 2010.






"In our modern world we have developed something that looks awfully like the left hemisphere's version of the world. We prioritize the virtual over the real, the technical becomes important, bureaucracies flourish. The picture, however, is fragmented.

There is a loss of uniqueness. The how has become subsumed in what, and the need for control leads to a paranoia in society, that we need to govern and control everything"

-Iain McGilchrist


I hope that you enjoy the video, ATS. Happy Sunday.

X.
edit on 20-5-2012 by Xoanon because:





posted on May, 20 2012 @ 07:19 PM
link   
Ah,

Here is the full lecture by Iain McGilchrist called The Brain Divided, which is where the audio for the RSA animation came from...




posted on May, 20 2012 @ 08:43 PM
link   
I would like to add another quote from Iain McGilchrist...



"It's my suggestion to you that in the history of Western culture things started in the 6th century b.c., in the Augustan era, and in the 15th and 16th century Europe, with a wonderful balancing of these hemispheres. In each case it drifted towards the left hemisphere's point of view.

Nowadays we live in a world that is paradoxical; we pursue happiness and it leads to resentment, and it leads to unhappiness, and, in fact, to an explosion of mental illness.

We've pursued Freedom but we now live in a world that is more monitored by CCTV and in which our daily lives are subjected to what de Tocqueville called, "a network of small rules that covers the surface of life and strangles Freedom."

-Iain McGilchrist. 2010. The Divided Brain



posted on May, 20 2012 @ 08:44 PM
link   
Nice post, X.

Have you heard of Jill Bolte Taylor? I assume you have but if not, she is a neuroanatomist who suffered from a stroke and had her left brain hemisphere completely shut down, leaving only the right one to perceive the world. During her phase of recovery, she claimed that this right hemisphere domination made her feel 'enlightened' or 'at one with the Universe'.

She also has a TED talk if you haven't watched it (again, I assume you most likely have, due to your interest):


I think this gives people (at least people concerned with spiritual matters) a bit of the 'wrong' impression about the brain. As you quoted from Einstein, we have become obsessed with the left brain and there isn't much place in the elite world of today's society for the creative mind. Then you hear stories about someone who views the world as entirely beautiful from the right brain, and how most 'enlightened' people/masters are living in their right brain; all the supposed joys of the world are perceived better from the right brain, they say. It all kind of comes off as if the left brain is hindrance to your quality of life and happiness and the right brain is the solution but I think that is a bit of a fallacy.

As long as the goal is the same (personal freedom), it shouldn't matter what method you use to achieve it; what religion, what practice, what ritual, ceremony, food you eat, things you think, brain hemisphere you stay in.

For instance, there is a form of Buddhist Dzogchen that uses intellectual thoughts to combat the mind by creating paradoxes, revelations, tricks, or going to the limits of cognitive abilities. This is using the power of the left hemisphere to find personal freedom.

Although it is true we are mostly stuck in our left brains these days, I think we could fall to the same erroneous ways if everyone was constantly in their right brain. Together, I think, would be the path of least resistance. As Thomas Merton once said:


"Happiness is not a matter of intensity but of balance, order, rhythm and harmony."


Balance is key.

edit on 20-5-2012 by ErroneousDylan because: This text is green.



posted on May, 21 2012 @ 12:51 AM
link   
reply to post by ErroneousDylan
 


I believe that the more time we spend choosing to run the deep inner peace circuitry of our right hemispheres, the more peace we will project in to the world and the more peaceful our planet will be"

-Jill Bolte Taylor


www.youtube.com...

No, E. Dylan, I had never heard of her before, thank you so much, that video really shook me to the core. I hope that everyone gets a chance to see it. I am going to enjoy passing it along to my peeps.



X.



posted on May, 21 2012 @ 01:38 AM
link   
reply to post by Xoanon
 


S&F, I'll look at this later when I wake up, and re-post my personal opinion. Looks a bit interesting from what I read at first if I may say so.



posted on May, 21 2012 @ 02:14 AM
link   
reply to post by Xoanon
 


Glad you enjoyed the video. It is really inspiring and just shows how a misfortune can truly be a blessing in disguise. She also has a book based off the TED talk (or perhaps vice versa): My Stroke of Insight: A Brain Scientist's Personal Journey



posted on May, 21 2012 @ 07:55 AM
link   
reply to post by ErroneousDylan
 


This actually makes sense to me, I've heard of things like in Daredevil, when one function of your body becomes damaged or shut down, the others are enhanced. So maybe she's a fraud, but it's still very possible she is legit. Thanks for the interesting information, lad (:



posted on May, 21 2012 @ 08:22 AM
link   
Looks interesting, book marking for a watch tomorrow.

Ta op



posted on May, 22 2012 @ 05:22 AM
link   

Originally posted by ErroneousDylan


That was incredible! Thanks so much for posting it. What I found particularly poignant about it, was that she explained to me perfectly some aspects of my own experience of when I had Glandular Fever when I was sixteen, most particularly the sense of my physical self that I had during the hallucinations that I experienced then. I am not quite sure why that is, and I will have to think a little bit more on that, but it certainly hit a nerve that I forgot that I had. Again, just amazing, what a wonderful woman, and such incredible and inspirational level of self-awareness. Indeed, very much worth sharing.


Originally posted by ErroneousDylan
Although it is true we are mostly stuck in our left brains these days, I think we could fall to the same erroneous ways if everyone was constantly in their right brain. Together, I think, would be the path of least resistance. As Thomas Merton once said:


"Happiness is not a matter of intensity but of balance, order, rhythm and harmony."


Balance is key.


Absolutely. Similarly, like Buddhism, the 'Christ Mind', 'truth setting you free', demonstrates the importance of giving the two hemispheres the freedom to interact with each other safely. The act of deceit places huge burdens upon this facility, preventing honest expression between our selves, and creating inner conflict. Restricting others in the same way, by projecting our belief systems or moral constraints onto others, through judgementalism also creates the same duality. We live in a world that encourages secrecy and subterfuge, thus it impinges on the individuals ability to connect with the wider energies, and constantly instructs the frontal lobe to inhibit rather than empathise.



posted on May, 22 2012 @ 09:42 AM
link   
Here is another video that you might be interested in, X, if you haven't seen it:



This man was mugged and physically assaulted. The violence did damage to his brain, causing the sector that deals with geometric shapes to over-compensate with neurotransmitters. The result is quite interesting to watch.



posted on May, 22 2012 @ 10:00 AM
link   
reply to post by Biliverdin
 


While I have no experience in the matter, her story sounds similar to the result of certain 'non-mentionable' things. Those, too, must stimulate the right brain only.

It sure does sound like it makes your physical body seem quite insignificant to the whole Universe. It must have been very humbling to realize we aren't as grand as we think we are.

I'd be fascinated to hear more about your fever-induced hallucinations.



posted on May, 27 2012 @ 04:02 PM
link   

Originally posted by ErroneousDylan
While I have no experience in the matter, her story sounds similar to the result of certain 'non-mentionable' things. Those, too, must stimulate the right brain only.


It did, to my ear, sound like a very secular explanation of the Shamanic death, and therefore in the context of the unmentionables that you refer to, of the more complex chemical compounds. It certainly doesn't correspond to synthetics BUT then in either case, it has a vast amount to do with the psychology of the individual. Some people can have a very profound experience but will never gain the level of insight that this woman has achieved.


Originally posted by ErroneousDylan
It sure does sound like it makes your physical body seem quite insignificant to the whole Universe. It must have been very humbling to realize we aren't as grand as we think we are.


Yes. And all the more so because she was obviously a very self-aware being before this happened, given the nature of her self-commentary, she was already a fairly self-less person, which makes her account all the more profound.


Originally posted by ErroneousDylan
I'd be fascinated to hear more about your fever-induced hallucinations.


Given a 24 year time lapse, I doubt that my recollection would be that accurate, however, what I was refering to specifically was a hallucination that stayed with me, because it was so disturbing, and that was looking at my hands and not recognising what they were, they looked all the world to me as though they were made of wood, and then seeing them, me, unravel. I didn't have the frame of reference that the lady in the video had, but at the time I remember thinking I was turning into cotton wool.*

I've been doing some reading and have found that there are a number of neurological complications associated with glandular fever, it was definately a pivotal point in my development, and I found it very, very difficult to relate to others after it. Totally changed my life in some respects. So the video that you posted has been incredibly helpful to me in any number of ways in understanding why that was. Thanks again.

*ETA Just to clarify, not the fluffy, floating in a cloud feeling that you get with E or the such like, more like becoming fibrous, hence the feeling of unravelling...which is what I related to what she described as becoming particulate, breaking down into molecules...
edit on 27-5-2012 by Biliverdin because: (no reason given)



new topics

top topics



 
8

log in

join