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We're all praxeologists, so where's the neuroscience?

I think given that most of our philosophies are based on a subset of psychology, we should more often explore the human brain in depth. When you think about it, the most complex organized structure in the entire universe is the human brain (that we know of), and we have one to play around with.

Here's a really cool article on the "mental stopwatch". How does the brain calculate short term time intervals? We know exactly how the brain processes the 24 hr circadian rhythm. In fact we know the brain structure involved, the genes involved, the proteins involved, and the retinal calibration of the 24 hr biological clock. But what about shorter time periods? Is there a specific structure involved, perhaps a loop? Or is it the combined networks of the sensory inputs that allow us to calculate time?

I've always found it interesting that I can correctly estimate the time of day or night, even if it's been a few hours since I've seen a clock.

We know from being alive that some moments appear to pass quicker than others. A minute with your hand on a hot stove will seem like an eternity, but a minute with an activity you enjoy will pass quicker than you will notice. What's the difference?

The answer, we don't have the slightest clue. However, here are a few good ideas on the subject:


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Are you so sure about this 24-hour clock concept?


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Yes, it's not exactly 24 hrs..

It's in the suprachasmiatc nuclei of the hypothalamus. It also has direct input pathways to the retina, meaning the signal bypasses the visual cortex in sending, and sends a direct signal from the retina to these nuclei. Keeping the rhythm under constant calibration. This is how the cercadian rhythm can calibrate to the seasons as well.

Interesting idea about 25 hrs though, too, and it certainly could be a 25 hr chemical reaction loop, but the idea is it would be calibrated each morning, or night.

Here's a cool article about it. Notice the beginner, intermediate and advanced explanation options, as well as the molecular, cellular, neurological, psychological and social options of explanation.


"Tu ne cede malis, sed contra audentior ito."

Check out the book 'How Brains Make Up Their Minds'



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A family friend can tell you the exact time out of a dead sleep.

Just thinking about Circadian rhythms today due to Marc's post...

Have you seen this?


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Oh yeah

I actually remember seeing this as a kid, and I ever since, I've always known the corpus collusum and it's function.

Broca's area, the area involved in translating words into muscle contractions in the larynx and mouth is in the left hemisphere in 95% of right handers, and 70% of lefties. This guys was in his left hemisphere without a right hemisphere analogous area. Some people have it on both sides, and others can move it from one hemisphere to the other after damage to the original.

Fascinating stuff.

"Tu ne cede malis, sed contra audentior ito."

Are you generally in favor of the theory posited in

The Origin of Consciousness in the Breakdown of the Bicameral Mind by Julian Jaynes? Is this the cause of inner and ultimately outer conflict?

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I'll have to look up that theory sometime.

I definitely believe in a bicameral mind. I like the terms soul and spirit, even though I'm not really religious. They can be thought of as the conscious operator and autonomic operator respectively. The spirit makes operations that regulate the heart, the gastrointestinal tract, the liver, etc. and essentially keeps the body and soul alive. The spirit reigns supreme in this theory, but usually defers to the soul in interacting with the outside world unless the situation becomes life threatening. It would be the soul controlling my body that is communicating to you right now.

"Tu ne cede malis, sed contra audentior ito."