The Secret Lives of the Brain


The Brain: An Owners Guide
Last week The Center for Brain Health presented neuroscientist,  David Eaglemam PhD and he was on fire. I found The Secret Life of the Brain to be thoroughly entertaining, interesting, interactive and thought provoking. 

There is no way that I could do Dr Eagleman justice on his explanation of our conscious and unconscious mind. You had to be there. But, to give you a taste, click here to see him in action...David Eagleman on The Colbert Report

Two books that have just made it to my reading list are Dr. Eagleman's ..."Incognito; The Secret Lives of the Unconscious Brain" and his book of fiction, "Sum".

Next Week:
Lewis Lapham; How the Internet is Molding Your Mind

Free Will?


The Brain: An Owner's Guide
Tuesday nights in February, I have voluntarily signed up for a series of lectures entitled "The Brain: An Owner's Guide" at Dallas' Center for Brain Health.

Last night's speaker was Michael Gazzaniga, Ph.D., California Institute of Technology. Founder of the Cognitive Neuroscience Institute and founding editor-in-chief of the Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience. He is the author of "Who's in Charge? Free Will and the Science of the Brain".

Lordy. We're talking "Split brains", "Neural specificity", "Emergent Minds" and "Retributive responses" here --- don't ask.

The distinguished lecturer was somewhat over this blogger's head, but none-the-less, I think I was able to take away his key point...

"Free Will" is largely a concept discussed and studied historically by philosophers and theologians. Now, the concept is entering into the realm of science. The impact of its scientific findings may ultimately affect our judicial system in the defense or prosecution of those being tried for crimes against society using proof obtained by MRI's, CT's, PET Scans and the like.

Food for thought.

Next Week's Lecture:
David Eagleman, PhD. "The Secret Lives of the Brain"

Tim's Next Chapter


Sebastian, Adair, Tim, Aleena
A couple of years ago, Mr. Something's younger brother, Tim, announced that he would be giving it all up in Dallas, Texas and planned on moving to The Philippines in 2013. Well, it's 2013 and he's leaving for Panay Island, Philippines on Tuesday.

The "Right" asked ... What about your house? Your job? Your Car? Your kids? Tim's reply? "Sell it. Quit it. Give it away. Raised them."
Mr. Something, Me, Annslee, Allison, Brian, Violet, Tim, Ben, Abby, Kara, Brent.

The "Left" encouraged him..."Go for it. Live your dream. Do it." Tim's response?...his familiar head tilt followed by a knowing nod and smile.
Colleen, Adair, Tim, Gene, Marri

We'll miss him, but wish him all the best in the next chapter of his life.
Follow Tim's Adventures on his blog...
Philippines Like a Native

Making Your Brain Smarter


Who knew?

The University of Texas at Dallas has a Center for Brain Health dedicated to understanding, protecting and healing the brain.

Very impressive.

Every Tuesday this month, the center will be presenting a series of lectures... "The Brain: An Owners Guide" sponsored by The Container Store. Hors d'oeuvres and wine were lovely, as was the parting gift of a Container Store puzzle-book. Classy.

This week's lecture, "Make Your Brain Smarter" was presented by the founder of The Center for Brain Health, Sandra Bond Chapman, PhD, author of ... Make Your Brain Smarter.

Here's what I learned...
- Most of us can expect our brains to reach their peak at age 40 - then our brains begin their cognitive  decline.
- The expected decline is preventable and unnecessary.

Our left and right brains are designed to transmit data throughout all of its areas efficiently and in synchrony. Multitasking tends to interrupt the smooth transmission of thoughts, leading to brain fatigue.

A few key points from her book and lecture include...
- Take advantage of silence to think deeply and solve problems
- Perform one task at a time
- Choose two top tasks to concentrate on daily
- Avoid information overload
- Think, speak and write original ideas
- Be social
- Eat Well
- Sleep
- Engage in aerobic exercise 3-4 times a week.

Can't hurt. Might help. 

The Center for Brain Health offers ...
- Brain Health 'Physicals'
- High Performance Brain Training
- Multiple areas of research in brain-related areas (Autism, Alzheimer's, PTSD, Trauma etc) 

Next Tuesday's lecture... 
Michael Gazzaniga, PhD."Who's in Charge? Free Will and the Science of the Brain"

Paranoid in South America

Anticipating travel to South America was both exciting and scary. Admittedly, reports of muggings, kidnappings and police corruption go...