This month, we are covering a seemingly simple concept that has powerful, revelatory, and wide ranging applications: Right-Right vs Right-Wrong...Right WHAT-Right HOW/WHY vs. Right WHAT-Wrong (or NO) HOW/WHY.
The overview for the rest of this Series is that God wants our brain to have Profitable Thought Processes. The enemy and our flesh wants our brain to have Unprofitable Thought Processes.
In the previous post, we covered The First Feedback Loop:
The First Feedback Loop results in a full thought.
A full thought contains a stimulus, emotion, and connecting fact.
A Profitable Thought Process would create this full thought quickly.
An Unprofitable Thought Process would be unable to create an accurate full thought in a timely manner.
Today, we will look at The Second Feedback Loop...
OUR THOUGHT PROCESS: THE SECOND FEEDBACK LOOP
During the Series on The Brain, there was a post titled, "Brain Overview" that covered the two feedback loops that make up a Profitable Thought Process. In this post, we are going to review The Second Feedback Loop.
The Second Feedback Loop has five parts:
1. The full thought is converted into a chemical
2. The emotional response
3. The decision
4. The action
5. All of this information is converted to an electrical fact in the brain
Here is the explanation from the "Brain Overview":
"The thalamus sends the information to the chemical manufacturer of the brain...the hypothalamus. The hypothalamus creates chemicals in response to the information. These chemicals are based on your internal emotional state. The experience, memories, and emotion (full thought) are now completely tied together as a chemical."
"This information is sent to the amygdala...something I have written about on this blog in the past. The amygdala is an almond shaped structure in the brain that stores all the emotional perceptions that have ever occurred every time a memory has been built...since the womb. So, memory and emotions are also tied together in the amygdala. The amygdala determines an emotional response. The response to this full thought is determined based on past emotional perceptions. The emotion and thought are filed away."
"The amygdala is where the "emotional decision" is made. The amygdala has many more connections going to the cortex (logical decision) than the cortex has going to the amygdala...so the amygdala can overwhelm the cortex and prevent reasoning."
"The amygdala is the cause of the "fight or flight" response. If it sends a negative message to the adrenal glands, adrenaline and cortisol are released which fogs the brain...and encourages the response: fight or flight. The amygdala can also initiate the release of positive chemicals if the emotion is positive."
"The amygdala can overload the cortex electrically and fog the brain chemically."
(Once this decision is made taking into account the full thought from the cortex and the emotional response from the amygdala, the individual's response to the stimulus is expressed. This is the actual action that the individual expresses to the outside world.)
"All of this information...the information from your external world (reality), your internal response (perception), and your external response (actions) is then sent to the hippocampus in the form of a chemical...a physical molecule. This information is now in your short-term memory. This information is stored between 24 and 72 hours."
(That covers four of the five steps...however, step five is the key!)
So far, everything that has been covered in this post happens whether you want it to or not. It happens naturally...it is in your nature. In order to complete the loop, an intentional decision has to be made...and the clock is ticking!"
"The decision: ignore the information in the hippocampus or deal with it? "
"This involves your corpus callosum."
"Ignoring the information is a choice and causes the hippocampus to discharge the information as heat energy once the individual's unique ability to hold short-term memory has expired...and the information is consciously forgotten."
"If you choose to intentionally deal with the information, the corpus callosum passes the information to your cortex to be filed away in your memory...and the second feedback loop is complete."
Notice, The Second Feedback Loop is ONLY completed by the individual expressing their will to complete The Second Feedback Loop by filing away the information into their cortex. Now we see WHY connecting facts have emotions attached to them...they get filed away with emotions AND the actual actions we took...which we can also feel good or guilty about.
One of the interesting things we saw in the Brain Series is that The Second Feedback Loop is completed in the rest of the body apart from the brain. For instance, the heart has a record of what action was taken. Also, somewhere in the body, there is a cell that has the chemical with a record of everything that resulted from this specific stimulus.
We saw in Dr. Leaf's book "Who Switched Off My Brain?" that the resulting stress from the body having a record that the brain is lacking causes the body to create toxic chemicals that medicine has been able to show leads to 87% of the illnesses that the individual experiences.
Let me be crystal clear: Medicine is finding out that our physical illness is actually the effect of an Unprofitable Thought Process. Medicine is finding out our physical well-being is actually the result of a Profitable Thought Process. (The Bible stated this thousands of years ago...)
Getting back to the decision...
Our Mind makes the decision to file the information away into our brain (cortex) or not. We have a choice as to what information is in our brain and how it is arranged. Dr. Leaf explains that it would be better to file the information away wrong, then to not file it away at all. Wrong information can be accessed and modified. Information that is lacking could be gone forever and may result in greater stress between the body and the brain.
You can physiologically repair your brain. After three days, the new connection physically appears to have always existed.
One of the main purposes of "Modeling God" is to make you aware of what YOU believe and WHY. Even if you don't agree with what is written in "Modeling God", you can become healthier by identifying what you do believe and intentionally filing that information into your brain. People who are unaware of what they ACTUALLY believe are in danger of "amygdala moments" (moments where the amygdala controls the body to the exclusion of the cortex) and may be setting themselves up for future illnesses.
However, notice that we can't falsely file information into our heart. What gets planted in our heart is an effect of what we ACTUALLY think and feel! Hearts and Minds are spoken about in the Bible in a completely unique manner from each other. We have seen that recent discoveries in medicine completely agrees with the Bible.
What you TRULY believe is planted in your heart whether you want it there or not. The heart cannot lie...the mind and the brain can lie. (This makes SEVERAL passages about the heart from the New Testament and the Old Testament take on a much deeper meaning.)
We also saw that the people who tended to live the longest had less information to process each day AND took the time to process this information. For example, we saw that people who keep their mental faculties longest over analyze things and have a partner that lives with them.
A person who over analyzes things faces most to all of the information in their short-term memory. A person who lives with a partner is more likely to face the information in their short-term memory.
The Second Feedback Loop results in the brain possessing accurate information.
This information is composed of facts (thoughts and actions) and emotions (feelings and attitudes about the actions).
A Profitable Thought Process would complete The Second Feedback Loop.
An Unprofitable Thought Process would fail to complete The Second Feedback Loop or complete it with inaccurate information...causing future First Feedback Loops to be Unprofitable.
Tomorrow, we will look at our ability to remember...