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Using your brain

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63787.  Wed Apr 05, 2006 5:59 am Reply with quote

There is a common misconception that you only use 10% of your brain (yes, I'm talking to you - there at the back).

This is, of course, nonsense: all of the human brain is used at one time or another. Because it takes a great deal of energy to keep a brain running, any parts that weren't used would long ago have been 'dumped' by the evolutionary process as being too costly.

"Maybe the correct fact is that we only use 10% at any one time", you might think. The truth is not far away, but not in the direction you might expect.

According to a recent paper by Peter Lennie of the New York University Centre for Neural Science, the optimal performance for brain neurons firing is to have no more than 3% firing at any one time, otherwise the energy that's required to 'reset' each neuron after it fires is too much for the brain to handle, and it loses efficiency.

So there you are: you're an even dimmer bulb than you thought you were.

63847.  Wed Apr 05, 2006 10:10 am Reply with quote

So does that mean that the as only 10% of Americans hold a passport then only 0.3% of American brainpower is used to fill out a passport form?

Quaintly Ignorant
64057.  Thu Apr 06, 2006 10:55 am Reply with quote

According to the commonly held myth of more brain usage being equal to better ability, people suffering from a condition such as epilepsy should become hyper-intelligent while suffering an attack as their brains go into overdrive. Rather than enabling it becomes disabling. Those who practice meditation try to get their minds as focused as possible and shut down as much of the extraneous stuff as possible. Perhaps less is more.... to a point.

64069.  Thu Apr 06, 2006 11:30 am Reply with quote

Meditation is all about 'silencing those chattering monkeys in the mind', but the thing is that those 'chattering monkeys' keep coming up with things like The Brandenburg Concertos and pork crackling with apple sauce...

64071.  Thu Apr 06, 2006 11:30 am Reply with quote

To many neurons firing overloads the brane. That makes sense. Kind of like a short circuit in an electrical circuit. To much juice, and bamf! everything stops, until someone resets the trip switch (or replaces the fuse) and the short is sorted out.




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