"A revelation of insight into the foundations of human suffering & transcendence. It not only lays out essential steps for inner freedom and joy but illuminates the way to true human potential." Paul Rademacher, author: A Spiritual Hitchhiker's Guide to the Universe

"The masterwork of a profoundly gifted healer of the soul. Dazzling, challenging, wondrously useful." Peggy Rubin, author: To Be and How To Be, Transforming Your Life Through Sacred Theatre

"Rewiring the Soul is one the best introductions to the spiritual life I've ever read. Not esoteric but real-world and practical. The implications are profound." Peter Shepherd, author: Daring To Be Yourself

Friday, April 24, 2009

Rewiring the Brain

In the blog a lot of attention is paid to new brain growth, to neuro-plasticity, to our capacity to influence the richness and growth of our brain.

At TED, the website I refer to so often, we are given this marvellous talk by Neuroscientist Michael Merzenich, who looks at one of the secrets of the brain's incredible power: its ability to actively re-wire itself. He's researching ways to harness the brain's plasticity to enhance our skills and recover lost function.

Michael Merzenich studies neuroplasticity -- the brain's powerful ability to change itself and adapt -- and ways we might make use of that plasticity to heal injured brains and enhance the skills in healthy ones.

TED indicates why you should listen to him:

One of the foremost researchers of neuroplasticity, Michael Merzenich's work has shown that the brain retains its ability to alter itself well into adulthood -- suggesting that brains with injuries or disease might be able to recover function, even later in life. He has also explored the way the senses are mapped in regions of the brain and the way sensations teach the brain to recognize new patterns.

Merzenich wants to bring the powerful plasticity of the brain into practical use through technologies and methods that harness it to improve learning. He founded Scientific Learning Corporation, which markets and distributes educational software for children based on models of brain plasticity. He is co-founder and Chief Science Officer of Posit Science, which creates "brain training" software also based on his research.

Merzenich is professor emeritus of neuroscience at the University of California, San Francisco.

"Merzenich is perhaps the most recognizable figure in brain plasticity and how one develops competence through experience and learning."Dominique M. Durand

1 comment:

  1. While I disagree with "there's no person on board" in early baby development, I agree that the environment shapes the development, and creates our unique configurations/personalities.
    Many subtle forms of learning take place in the womb, and the biochemical changes the mother experiences can be passed onto the fetus.
    Rather than negate the early sensitivities and development, it would be more accurate and inclusive to acknowledge that we know very little about pre-natal brain development, and we cannot measure scientifically much of what is going on.

    Ingrid Johnson
    The Baby Parenting Coach