Struggling with Meaninglessness

searching meaning in meaninglessness

Lesser Brain

with one comment

I have only 5 minutes to write this, so I will just throw everything very randomly.

I have written how reptiles are less evolved than mammals in the post Structure of Life. But I wrote it more on philosophical context. Last week while I was reading a random book, I found a solid scientific evidence to support my view.

All brains are divided to 2 parts – the Old Pathway and New Pathway.

Old Pathway is the most fundamental part of our brain and is responsible for the fight or flight survival skills. It mainly deals with coordination, orientation, and position of objects.

New Pathway allows analytical decision making, conscious thought, categorizing objects and high level processing.

In other words, brain evolved from simplicity to complexity. Simple creatures only have the Old Pathway while sophisticated creatures evolved New Pathway, built on the Old Pathway.

Try this : Throw a Nerf ball at a (human) friend’s head. The first few times he will duck, but once he realizes it won’t hurt him, he’ll have no problems standing still as it clobbers him. Now try it with an alligator. Although alligators have been on this planet for three hundred million years longer than people, they’ll never figure out that they don’t need to dodge Nerf balls. They’ll flinch no matter how many times you throw the ball at them. In fact, they’ll try to eat you no matter what you throw at them. – Dan Roam

This is what I’d learn here – Lesser brain always blindly react to things instead of analyzing the situation because lesser brain did not evolved to understand it. Now, how can we apply this to the context of human intelligence?


Written by elan85

January 7, 2009 at 12:21 pm

Posted in Neuroscience

One Response

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  1. That’s not true.
    Even very primitive animals learn to disregard irrelevant stimuli. This is called habituation and there are neurophysiology mechanisms that can explain it at the cellular level. See Kandel”s Nobel prize lecture on the discovery of long term memory cellular mechanism (LTM).


    February 24, 2010 at 4:34 am

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