Recent Indications the Mind Forms the Brain

Recent research into brain functioning provides further indications that the mind, outside of the body and the brain, brings consciousness and memories to the brain and forms the brain resulting in what we experience as thinking, memories, and sensory experiences.  The effect is the same as a signal coming into a television set and forming the components so you can see the picture and hear the sounds that are coming from a source completely outside of the television.  Larry King isn't in the television set.  The sets, cameras, broadcasting equipment, and all the vast resources of people and technology required to produce and broadcast the signal are outside of the television; the television just lights up and gives you the experience when the signal comes to it.  But Larry King's interviews have already finished before the television even gets the signal.

In the same way, it appears that the brain takes on the configuration in its neurons that fits with your experiences of sight, hearing, tasting, touching, smelling, sense of motion, body sense, and emotion when a signal from outside the body and brain forms the brain to have the experience.  Recent research in this chapter seems to support that view.

The Mind in the Brain Would Have to Create Electricity to Make the Brain and Body Work, but It Has No Mechanism to Do So.

Pim van Lommel, a cardiologist in the Division of Cardiology, Hospital Rijnstate, Arnheim, Neetherlands, explains that the mind, which is non-physical, couldn’t create physical electricity to make the brain recreate an image.  For the image to be recalled, the brain would have to generate electricity causing millions of neurons to fire in exactly the same way they were active in the brain when photons coming to the brain through the eye created the image in the first place.  But the brain has no ability to create the electricity.  This fact has been discussed repeatedly in the literature, including in the Journal of Physiology1, Journal of Neurophysiology2, and Truth Journal, International Interdisciplinary Journal of Christian Though.3  Pim van Lommel summarizes the comments:

For decades, extensive research has been done to localize consciousness and memories inside the brain, so far without success. In connection with the unproven assumption that consciousness and memories are produced and stored inside the brain, we should ask ourselves how a non-material activity such as concentrated attention or thinking can correspond to an observable (material) reaction in the form of measurable electrical, magnetic, and chemical activity at a certain place in the brain, even an increase in cerebral blood flow is observed during such a non-material activity as thinking.4

In other words, a thought doesn’t exist in matter, and yet, when you just intend to recall a face, the image appears in your mind and the brain lights up with electrical activity.  But the brain doesn't have a mechanism to cause the electricity that science has assumed is necessary to recreate the image in the brain.  Pim van Lommel is suggesting that the mind outside of the brain causes the brain to light up.

Biophysicists Can Detect No Electrical
Activity in Sensory Neurons.

Another recent finding leads to similar speculation that the mind outside of the body forms the brain's activity.  Attempts to measure electricity along the sensory neurons when a person is apparently sensing something have failed to find traces of it.  The laws of thermodynamics dictate that electrical impulses must produce heat.  Thomas Heimburg, associate professor of biophysics at the Niels Bohr Institute at Copenhagen University, and Andrew D. Jackson, professor of theoretical physics at Copenhagen University, have been attempting to detect the heat from the electricity when impulses are traveling along nerves to produce sensory experiences.  They can find none. 

Medical and biological textbooks all say that nerves function by sending electrical impulses along their length. Heimburg says that their research shows the textbooks are wrong:

But for us as physicists, this cannot be the explanation. The physical laws of thermodynamics tell us that electrical impulses must produce heat as they travel along the nerve, but experiments find that no such heat is produced . . .5

In other words, there appears to be no electrical activity coming from the sensory organs, although the brain does register electrical activity that shows the person is having a sensory experience.  They suggest that another process must be occurring, such as sound pulses.  But as of yet, they have no indication that is true.  They just know that the standard explanation of electrical impulses traveling along the sensory nerves does not seem to explain how the brain receives a sensory signal.

However, this finding fits with the explanation that the mind outside of the brain does the sensing and molds the brain to fit the sensed experience; the brain then shows electromagnetic activity.  Earlier in this book, I presented the finding by neuroscientists that the visual cortex in the brains of blind people becomes active when a blind person is "seeing" using echolocation,6 but the eyes are not involved in sending signals to the brain.  Ben Underwood, for example, has plastic eyeballs, so it's physically impossible for signals to come from eyeballs to the visual cortex, but he navigates through the environment very successfully, doing things he could only do if he were seeing.  It seems likely that the mind outside of the brain has the experience of seeing, then tells the brain how to light up with the information.

If that is true, it would be much like a signal coming into a television that forms the parts of the television so images and sounds come from it.  The signal carrying the images and sounds isn’t generated in the television; it comes from outside and activates the components of the television.  The sensory experience is already in the mind and the brain is just being formed by consciousness to reflect the sight, hearing, smelling, tasting, touching, or emotion.  That fits with the research data explained in Chapter 1 showing that the mind can know several seconds before a computer even selects a picture to be shown on a monitor where the body can sense it.

The Brain Just Reflects What the Mind Has Already Seen.

When a person "sees" something, the neuroscience explanation is that signals from the eye (retina) travel along a cable called the optic nerve to the parts of the brain where the image is received and processed.  In an optical illusion, a person looks at an image, but the mind thinks the image is different from what it actually is.  The illusion below is an example.



In this illusion, the ball at the bottom (front) of the picture looks smaller than the ball at the top.  However, both are actually the same size.  The mind has interpreted the two balls as being different even though, in reality, they’re the same.  We experience the same illusion as the moon looks larger when closer to the horizon because our mind registers it in relationship to things on the horizon, but it seems smaller as it rises into the expanse of the night sky.

Scott Murray, University of Washington psychology professor, and two colleagues, wanted to know how people’s brains registered the difference between the apparent size (one appearing to be larger than the other) and the actual size, since the two are identical.  To find out, they used fMRI, a special type of MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) that measures neuron activity in the brain or spinal cord.  They measured the parts of the brain that register sight (the optical cortex) as people looked at the image of the two balls in the picture. 

Remarkably, even though the two balls are identical in size, looking at the ball in the back that seems larger activated 20 percent more brain area than looking at the ball in the front that looks smaller. The 20 percent difference was identical to the estimate the subjects made when asked about the difference in size between the two balls.

If the mind were in a brain that functions as a machine, it wouldn't register a difference between the two balls; it would simply see two balls of the same size and the mind would register the information in the same area within the brain.  That's not what happens.

Murray reported, 

Researchers have long believed that the visual system is organized hierarchically, with early visual areas such as the primary visual cortex simply registering the physical input from the eyes and "higher" visual areas attempting to put all the information together. This work challenges these theories of the organization of the visual system.7

If the brain as a machine were receiving the image through the retinas, we would expect that the photons striking the retinas would cover the same area of retina for both balls and the brain would register the two balls as being identical in size, just as a camera would recreate the actual balls at their actual sizes on the exposed film.  Instead, the brain becomes active with an image that has registered the illusion in the mind.

A reasonable interpretation of these results is that the mind outside of the brain observes the image and decides about the illusion before the brain is even involved. The mind then sends the message to the brain and the brain registers the mind’s message just as the mind outside of the body sent it, with the errors in estimating size.

This is more evidence supporting the suggestion that the mind has the experience, then tells the brain about it and the brain becomes active, reflecting what the mind has already processed and experienced. 


Thanks for reading.

I really want this book to help people realize they're eternal beings having a physical experience. Any comments, positive and negative, will help me.

Mail to rchogan@youreternalself.com.

The book is published in paperback by Greater Reality Publications. Click here to purchase a copy of the book.


Love and peace, Craig


Chapter 10 Endnotes

1 Desmedt and Robertson, 1977.

2 Roland and Friberg, 1985.

3 Eccles, 1988.

4 Van Lommel, "6. Neurophysiology in . . ." (n.d.).

5 "Physicists challenge notion . . ." 2007.

6 "Humans with Amazing Senses . . ." 2006.

7 "There’s more than meets the eye . . ." 2007.