X-Message-Number: 25321
Date: Tue, 14 Dec 2004 10:20:18 EST
Subject: Split brain research interesting


In a message dated 12/14/2004 5:01:40 AM Eastern Standard Time, 

> For those unfamiliar with this line of research, surgical
> commissurotimies (severing of the corpus callosum) have been peformed
> to ameliorate severe seizure disorders. The brain's hemispheres of
> those patients were unable to communicate about anything except for low
> level informtion through the brain stem. Researchers like Gazzaniga
> were interested in how the hemispheres differed. The most surprising
> consequence was that, on casual inspection, the patients didn't seem to
> act very differently at all. But upon closer inspection, very
> significant difference were identified.
(snipping rest of post)
(Rudi writing)

Thanks, Scott, for a fascinating insight on consciousness and research.  
Complete with references.  

I had read of this phenomena earlier, perhaps in Discover, Skeptical 
Inquirer, or Scientific American.  

Even more likely it may have been in Steven Pinker's fantastic and 

fascinating book, "The Blank Slate."  (Of course, in the book, he provides 
evidences that we are far from "Blank slates," and indeed, hard wired for all 
sorts of behaviors.)  

What I find helpful in Scott's posting is the empiricism of current brain 

research, contrasted with the "etherearalness" and nonprovability of the 
thought experiments referenced.  Not that thought experiments are not a 

valuable excersize...it is my understanding that much of Einstein's insights 
as a result of thought experiments, which were completely untestable in the 
"real" world.

I do not intend to weigh in on the highly relevant and foundational questions 
posed on Cryonet as of late, as I honestly don't feel I have the time to give 
these postings the input they deserve, and brighter brains than mine are 
already taking up much Cryonet bandwidth.

So, while we may not be sure what constitutes our QE or sense of self, it 
certainly SEEMS like something inside of me is authentic, makes decisions, and 
experiences pleasure, pain, joy, anxiety, etc.  

And it is my mission in life to help folks make decisions NOW that 

MAY...certainly no guarantee...help preserve this sense of self for the year 
16,354 CE.  
I have it on the best authority that this is going to be a very special year. 
 And none of us will want to miss it. :)

For Centuries, See you in "Hoffman's year" of 16,354!



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