Wired to Connect?

Once born we have to make a connection with the world and have to learn to associate with it and to react in the right way with those around us.

 

Step by step we have to reach out but also take hands which are offered to us. We do have to notice those who would like to help us to advance in the community where we are living in.

 

Having the three neural networks within our brain that promote our social connection we have to learn how to properly use them.
The one that gives us the ability to feel social pain and pleasure is often one we would like to ignore or not foster, but that is just the one we should give much more attention to. When we do grow up we should train our part of the brain which allows us to read others’ emotions and predict their behaviour.
Newt we do have the elements in us which can help us to absorb cultural beliefs and values, thereby linking us to our social groups.

 

Each network involves brain structures and neural pathways that have been mapped using fMRI technology and studied via psychological experiments, some of which make for fascinating and provocative reading.

 

We should be thankful to the Divine Creator He has provided us with a magnificent tool that can brings us further in life and make us able to connect in different ways.

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  • Brain circuits multitask to detect, discriminate the outside world (eurekalert.org)
    A new study found that neural circuits in the brain rapidly multitask between detecting and discriminating sensory input, such as headlights in the distance. That’s different from how electronic circuits work, where one circuit performs a very specific task. The brain, the study found, is wired in way that allows a single pathway to perform multiple tasks.

    “We showed that circuits in the brain change or adapt from situations when you need to detect something versus when you need to discriminate fine details,” said Garrett Stanley, an associate professor in the Wallace H. Coulter Department of Biomedical Engineering at Georgia Tech and Emory University, whose lab performed the research. “One of the things the brain is good at is doing multiple things. Engineers have trouble with that.”

    The research findings were published online in the journal NEURON on March 5. The research was funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the National Science Foundation (NSF).

    The distance at which a person can discern two headlights from a single light is controlled by the acuity of the body’s sensory pathway. For decades neuroscientists have assumed that the level of one’s acuity is controlled by the distance between areas in the brain that are triggered by the sensory input. If these two areas of the brain closely overlap, then two sensory inputs — two headlights in the distance — will appear as one, the thinking went. The new study, for the first time, used animal models and optical imaging to directly assess how acuity is controlled in the brain, and how acuity can adapt to the task at hand. One neuronal circuit can do different things and do them in a robust way, the study found.
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    Learning more about how circuits in the brain multitask could lead to a better understanding of disease, therapeutic applications or to potentially improving how the brain functions. Stanley said that down the road engineers might be able to experimentally manipulate brain circuits to perform a desired task.

    “Can we make individuals better at doing something? Can we have them detect things more rapidly or discriminate between things with better acuity?” Stanley said. “Using modern techniques, we believe that we can actually influence the circuit and have it selectively grab one kind of information from the outside world versus another.”

     

  • Train Your Brain To Let Go Of Habits – 10 Methods For Creating New Neural Pathways (asheepnomore.net)
    You may remember the punch line “The light bulb has to want to change.”  You have to have a high intention to change as well. If there is this high intention, then creating new pathways in your brain is bound to happen.
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    To create a new neural pathway, you take the focus off the old habit, and then that old habit eventually falls away. Don’t pay attention to the donuts and cakes. Take your awareness and focus it on good, wholesome, healthy delicious foods.
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    Know you have the Force within you, and therefore you have great power. Meditation creates new pathways and brain changes. Actual studies have been done on the brains of monks to show meditation’s effect on neural circuits of the brain.

  • 5 Ways to Improve Your Brain (humansarefree.com)
    Neurogenesis has been found to occur in two brain regions; the subventricular zone and the hippocampus.

    The latter part of the brain plays a key role in learning and memory, and alterations have been linked to a variety of cognitive pathologies such as anxiety, depression, addiction and neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson’s. A reduction in hippocampus volume has been observed in patients with depression and other cognitive disorders.

    To reverse this process we need to harness neurogenesis. In this article I will cover a wide array of things we can do (for example: meditation, Ibogaine, turmeric) and stuff we can eat to boost our brains.

  • Why Are We So Wired To Connect? (illuminations2012.wordpress.com)
    Our brains are continuously working, and in order to better respond to our environment. “This is what our brains were wired for: reaching out to and interacting with others,” writes Lieberman.
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    Why Are We So Wired to Connect?

    Schools need to encourage better social climates where students feel like they belong, writes Lieberman, since a sense of belonging is closely tied to a higher GPA. Teacher should also plan lessons that engage students’ mind-reading neural networks in order to help them learn material better, especially in the social sciences and humanities, but even in math and science courses. Assigning students to learn material in order to help another—i.e., perhaps to tutor a younger student in math—would improve academic learning too, he argues.

    But perhaps most importantly, we need to understand how vital our social connections are to our happiness and health. Lieberman points to research that shows having social connection is as important to health outcomes as not smoking. Our experience of pain is lessened by the presence of those we love and our sense of worth is connected to our social standing more than to our monetary wealth. He cautions against working so hard or remaining so isolated that we eschew social ties.

  • “Clarifying” Neural Circuitry: A New Technique to Image the Brain (lions-talk-science.org)
    Both CLARITY and optogenetics are useful brain mapping tools that may lead us towards the creation of a map of all of the connections in the human brain, allowing us to finally gain a structural understanding of the many neurological disorders out there.
  • Wiring Your Brain (integral-living.com)
    You are not your brain. The stories you tell yourself and the way you respond is in your control. You are not just and actor reciting someone else’s lines. You can rewrite the script.

    Start by focusing each morning on who you want to be and how you want to show up. Breathe. Dress for the occasion. Walk, eat, interact, think, as the best you can be, instead of an unconscious jumble of reflexes and conditioned responses. Be in charge. Believe. Shift will happen. The connections that no longer fire together will rewire and new circuits will start to form. Celebrate when it works. Recalibrate when you regress.

  • Claim: “Male and female brains wired differently” (trueorfalse.me)
    Between 2-3 December 2013, reports emerged through the Guardian newspaper, followed swiftly by the Independent, that a new scientific study had demonstrated for the first time that “the brains of men and women [are] wired differently.” The media stories were based on a study by the University of Pennsylvania (UPenn) which appeared to find that many of the connections in a typical male brain run between the front and back regions, and are mostly confined to individual hemispheres. In contrast (on average), the connections in women’s brains were more likely to run from side to side between the left and right hemispheres. The only region where men had more “between-hemispheric” neural connectivity was the cerebellum, which plays a vital role in motor control.
  • How one (well financed) startup is attempting to decode the language of the brain (news.nationalpost.com)
    There are many ways to map the brain and many kinds of brains to map. Although the ultimate goal of most neuroscience is understanding how human brains work, many kinds of research can’t be done on human beings, and the brains of mice and even flies share common processes with human brains.

    The work of Reid, and scientists at Allen and elsewhere who share his approach, is part of a surge of activity in brain research as scientists try to build the tools and knowledge to explain — as well as can ever be explained – how brains and minds work. Besides the Obama administration’s $100-million Brain Initiative and the European Union’s $1 billion, decade-long Human Brain Project, there are numerous private and public research efforts in the United States and abroad, some focusing on the human brain, others like Reid’s focusing on nonhumans.

    While the Human Connectome Project, which is spread among several institutions, aims for an overall picture of the associations among parts of the human brain, other scientific teams have set their sights on drilling to deeper levels. For instance, the Connectome Project at Harvard is pursuing a structural map of the mouse brain at a level of magnification that shows packets of neurochemicals at the tips of brain cells.

writing to freedom

Did you know that our brains are designed to connect socially?

Wired to Connect? brain neurons Image source: douban.com

Brain researchers are discovering how much our brains have evolved to thrive on social connections. For those of you who had close loving relationships growing up, this might seem obvious. For others who grew up without close and loving relationships, this is foreign territory. For most of my life, I have struggled with loneliness and depression. Even though I know intellectually that I need people, sometimes the hardest thing in the world is to reach out when I’m feeling lonely or depressed.

The article didn’t address this, but I suspect, for those of us who didn’t have strong social connections growing up, we have fewer connections in our brains, resulting in a lower foundation for emotional health and happiness. Positive psychology calls this our set point. Science seems to demonstrate that we can change and…

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4 thoughts on “Wired to Connect?

  1. Thanks for the reblog. I like how “connected” so many articles and ideas. And of course, learning more about our brains is only useful if we use it to serve our hearts, communities and spirit. Blessings, Brad

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  2. Pingback: Easter holiday, fun and rejoicing | Free Christadelphians: Belgian Ecclesia Brussel - Leuven

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