The Amazing Human Brain

brain1Last night when I couldn’t sleep, I turned on the Science Channel and watched a fascinating program about people who suffered brain injuries and subsequently emerged from their injury with abilities they didn’t have before the accident.

One person fell as a toddler and began sculpting animals — mostly horses. In about five to ten minutes, this man (now 53 years old) could produce a 3D image of a horse or longhorn steer that was so life-like it’s hard to believe anyone could produce something so beautiful in such a short period of time. And get this — He MUST sculpt– at one point in his life he was institutionalized and his clay was taken away from him. Later, he told his caregiver this was child abuse.

Another profile was about an ordinary guy who was playing around a pool with this buddies and accidentally dove into the shallow end. He banged his head on the cement bottom of the pool, lost some hearing temporarily, and days later he had the ability to write and play his music on the piano. We’re not talking “Mary had a little lamb,” here folks; we’re talking about complicated classical pieces of music and original scores. Before the accident, this man had never touched a piano, but now he MUST play or the music in his brain drives him crazy.

There were other stories about such incidents, but I think sharing two with you is enough to make the point that scientists and doctors don’t have a clue why these people do what they do. It’s as if the injury turned off certain abilities and made room in the brain to turn other abilities on. I can’t explain this savant behavior of their findings, but it just goes to show you what amazing beings we humans truly are.

Wouldn’t it be great if we understood the way we tick? After that we might delve into the workings of the oceans. There’s so much to explore right here on little ol’ earth. I think we should concentrate on exploring these types of phenomena instead of using our brains to conjure up more sophisticated ways to kill each other.

Yeah, I’m on my soap box today. The situation in Syria involving chemical weapons makes me so sad. Why couldn’t countries be satisfied with the power to be able to destroy the earth with nuclear power? Why did the US and the USSR also have a chemical weapons warfare race, too? (This is a true fact of the cold war. It was Nixon who put a stop to the US chemical weapon development. I guess this fact got lost in his Watergate debacle.)  Why do governments develop such things? Putting anthrax on ballistic missiles to shoot at one another seems like overkill to me.  Yeah, I watch the Military Channel, too.

For all the good in the world, there seems to be a need to perpetuate evil, too. I just wonder how gassing or poisoning innocent populations and destroying land masses for millions of years achieves anything. Perhaps this thinking is prevalent because many people in power don’t have exceptional brains?

3 thoughts on “The Amazing Human Brain

  1. Unfortunately, if we understood the human brain well enough to turn on certain behavior, I’m certain someone would use it for military purposes. One of my favorite Star Trek NG episodes is The Hunted which is based on this premise. Then again, chemical/biological weapons aren’t new – search for “catapulting plague victims into a besieged city” – or have a few more sleepless nights, I saw that recently on H2. .

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