Received: by alpheratz.cpm.aca.mmu.ac.uk id LAA12720 (8.6.9/5.3[ref firstname.lastname@example.org] for cpm.aca.mmu.ac.uk from email@example.com); Wed, 29 Aug 2001 11:45:24 +0100 Message-ID: <2D1C159B783DD211808A006008062D3101746060@inchna.stir.ac.uk> From: Vincent Campbell <firstname.lastname@example.org> To: "'email@example.com'" <firstname.lastname@example.org> Subject: RE: Song of Myself Date: Wed, 29 Aug 2001 11:20:51 +0100 X-Mailer: Internet Mail Service (5.5.2650.21) Content-Type: text/plain X-Filter-Info: UoS MailScan 0.1 [D 1] Sender: email@example.com Precedence: bulk Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org
>> Do keep up Ted. Even those of us who follow this kind of stuff
>> through a combination of science magazines, popular science
>> science TV shows know what's going on with phantom limbs.
<Are you sure about that? Have we explained phantom limbs or merely
> described what happens in the brain when phantom limbs are sensed? >
< Why should signals from nerves where the arm was cut off induce a
> the arm is still there?>
What do you mean by 'why' here? Are looking for motivation or
something? The feelings don't come from the point where the arm was cut
off, but from the region of the brain responsible for dealing with signals
from that limb, when that region has been appropriated by the brain for
< Does this mean our sensation of our arms doesn't
> actually require arms in the first place?>
What it means is that our sense of body comes not merely from the
external stimuli to our limbs, but from the interal organisation of the
brain. Hence we can have sensations of a limb even when that limb no longer
exists, because the part of the brain relating to that limb is still there
and still being used. You can show this kind of thing the other way around.
People who suffer specific kinds of brain injury exhibit all sorts of
strange shifts in perception despite retaining all their senses (e.g. the
stroke victim who couldn't work out how a mirror worked, when he was allowed
to see out of one of his eyes).
<Where does our sense of our body come from? Is it represented for
us in a
> map in our postcentral gyrus, or do we directly sense our bodies? In
> words, does the postcentral gyrus *contain* our bodily sensation or merely
> facilitate it? Sheldrake is suggesting that each of us does actually
> our body and not merely a representation of it in the brain. Our somatic
> perception is in some way related to the holistic, field-based
> of the body. Think that's weird? How about a postcentral homunculus?
> We don't live in our brains. We're not all nice and snug in a little box,
> with a TV in the occipital lobe and a stereo in the temporal lobe. Our
> mental life can't be reduced to the brain any more than our bodies can be
> reduced to our genes.>
If you want a holistic notion of our experience you can have it, you
just don't need weird fields to do it. I believe they even produce little
models of humans based upon the amount of brain activity related to our
senses (very big hands, and facial features are large too).
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