Re: virus: Fwd: The location of God?

Tim Rhodes (
Mon, 10 May 1999 11:32:58 -0700 (PDT)

> When Persinger himself stimulated his own brain's temporal lobes
> using a transcranial magnetic stimulator, a helmet which shoots
> rapidly fluctuating and extremely powerful magnetic fields on to a
> small patch of the brain, so activating it, he experienced God for
> the first time in his life.

Cool! I can't wait for TCMS helmets to be miniaturized enough that God-hats give psychedelics a run for their money!!!

> Andrew Newberg and Eugene D'Aquili of the Nuclear Medicine Division
> at the University of Pennsylvania have been conducting brain-imaging
> experiments on highly proficient mediators in order to identify those
> other brain areas where activity is linked to religious experience.
> One of their most interesting findings was decreased activity in the
> posterior superior parietal lobule. Our sense of distinction between
> self and world may well lie in this brain area.

I spent the weekend at a cabin in the mountains with three couples and their kids; two 2-year-olds and a six month old baby. Apperantly the posterior superior parietal lobule doesn't kick in for a few years because 2 year-olds don't seem to be able to tell the difference between themselves and others.

My favorite scene was when the two kids were running around and one did a serious face-plant into the dirt (no hands). The other looked over, saw what happened, and then she--the uninjured party--began to wail as well and ran to mommy crying "Me hurt! Me hurt!"

-Prof. Tim

PS: They're such little imitation machines at that stage and these kids furthered my belief that language has very little to do with memes and that memetic transfer has more to do with the behaviors of social animals in general then with just humans or with human language. In fact, I'm beginning to feel that language is a highly overrated add-on that simply lies over our social interactions rather than as a source for them.