Contradiction: when our brains disagree.

I have known our brains evolved for many years, ever since my ear­ly psy­chol­o­gy lessons at col­lege: How­ev­er I have nev­er under­stood the impli­ca­tions of this until now. The evi­dence is right there for an evolved brain. The small­est part of the brain, at the cen­tre con­tains all the good­ies need­ed for a sim­pler life form to func­tion, like the hypo­thal­a­mus. Around it, the Old Mam­malia, fea­tures every­thing you need for mam­mals to func­tion, like dogs and cats. Last­ly at the front of brain lies the neo­cor­tex giv­ing us our human high­er brain func­tion­ing, so called because it’s one of the last parts of the human brain to appear.

The evolved brain isn’t a recipe for sta­bil­i­ty, although it’s made humans what we are. Today I found two parts of my brain dis­agree­ing about how I should feel about a radio pro­gram. A radio play had a con­tro­ver­sial theme and it trig­gered two very strong, oppos­ing emo­tions: almost as if I held two oppos­ing and con­tra­dic­to­ry ideas at the same time.

I would per­son­al­ly describe my high­er brain func­tion as cul­tured, social and ratio­nal. The more Mam­malian parts seem focused on intu­ition, self ori­en­ta­tion and emo­tion­al. I would like to add I have found that many choic­es are decid­ed in the Mam­malian part of the mind and then ratio­nalised in the frontal cor­tex part of the brain, but this isn’t always the case.

In response to this radio pro­gram the high­er part of my mind was embar­rassed, shocked and hor­ri­fied at the text: Fea­tured in the radio play was a strong faux pas that, in our soci­ety is total­ly abhor­rent.

The mam­malian part of my mind was simul­ta­ne­ous­ly very attract­ed to the beau­ty of the play, I felt empa­thy with the char­ac­ters; I felt their lone­li­ness and I felt the desire felt by the main char­ac­ter.

I have been pre­oc­cu­pied as of late with what I am. I, of course have a stan­dard knowl­edge of antin­o­my but I’m unsat­is­fied with the philo­soph­i­cal the­o­ries of mind I have read. I know the brain evolved in three main parts (as dis­cussed ear­li­er), each of which has under­gone fine tun­ing through evo­lu­tion, but with human beings being such a new species we have yet to find a par­a­digm; a stan­dard and per­fect human, where as you may be able to find a per­fect stan­dard shark.

The cells in my brain will be renewed around every 2 weeks. Mem­o­ry, like all com­plex neur­al cir­cuit­ry being a liv­ing, chang­ing and dying struc­ture that strength­ens through use and decay’s through iso­la­tion. Human beings, like all life are cre­at­ed from the most beau­ti­ful math­e­mat­i­cal frac­tal algo­rithms that cor­re­late with the laws of physics; tru­ly nature must have learned and copied the secret’s we take such pride in hav­ing found. The human race, though con­scious, has yet to achieve a frac­tion of what nature has: and what we have achieved seems some­times short sight­ed, inef­fi­cient and huge­ly dan­ger­ous to our own sur­vival. We are like chil­dren in Leonar­do da Vinci’s work shop, burn­ing his papers & scrib­bling on his mas­ter works. Has a human ever improved a spi­ders web by touch­ing it?

The horse, as they say has bolt­ed; and here we are, with­out the high­er ratio­nal­ism of the Gods and with­out the ner­vous intel­li­gence of plants, breed­ing and fight­ing and using nature & earth’s boun­ty as a util­i­ty like any oth­er. A bull in a chi­na shop.

My brain is thou­sands of dif­fer­ent com­put­ers, each with their own lan­guage and roles. At it’s best my mind’s an orches­tra, with each piece work­ing togeth­er to cre­ate great beau­ty, at it’s worst… it’s a dull, con­fused and vul­ner­a­ble thing that oth­ers seek to take advan­tage of. Ulti­mate­ly it’s those beau­ti­ful sym­phonies of thought that are mankind’s best chase of sur­vival; and what makes life so won­der­ful; or at-least bear­able.