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Download E-books Phantoms in the Brain: Probing the Mysteries of the Human Mind PDF

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By V. S. Ramachandran, Sandra Blakeslee

Neuroscientist V.S. Ramachandran is across the world well known for uncovering solutions to the deep and quirky questions of human nature that few scientists have dared to deal with. His daring insights in regards to the mind are matched purely via the lovely simplicity of his experiments -- utilizing such low-tech instruments as cotton swabs, glasses of water and dime-store mirrors. In Phantoms within the Brain, Dr. Ramachandran recounts how his paintings with sufferers who've extraordinary neurological problems has shed new mild at the deep structure of the mind, and what those findings let us know approximately who we're, how we build our physique snapshot, why we snort or develop into depressed, why we could think in God, how we make judgements, lie to ourselves and dream, even perhaps why we are so smart at philosophy, tune and artwork. a few of his so much awesome cases:

  • A girl paralyzed at the left aspect of her physique who believes she is lifting a tray of beverages with either fingers bargains a different chance to check Freud's idea of denial.
  • a guy who insists he's speaking with God demanding situations us to invite: may perhaps we be "wired" for non secular experience?
  • a lady who hallucinates comic strip characters illustrates how, in a feeling, we're all hallucinating, all of the time.

Dr. Ramachandran's encouraged clinical detective paintings pushes the bounds of medicine's final nice frontier -- the human brain -- yielding new and provocative insights into the "big questions" approximately cognizance and the self.

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As a result, if anyone loses a leg and is then motivated within the genitals, she's going to event sensations within the phantom leg. this can be what you would count on if enter from the genital region have been to invade the territory vacated via the foot. day after today the telephone rang back. This time it was once an engineer from Arkansas. "Is this Dr. Ramachandran? " "Yes. " "You comprehend, I examine your paintings within the newspaper, and it truly is particularly interesting. I misplaced my leg under the knee approximately months in the past yet there is nonetheless anything i do not comprehend. i might like your recommendation. " "What's that? " 31 "Well, i believe a bit embarrassed to inform you this. " I knew what he used to be going to claim, yet not like the graduate scholar, he did not learn about the Penfield map. "Doctor, each time i've got sexual activity, I event sensations in my phantom foot. How do you clarify that? My physician acknowledged it does not make experience. " "Look," I stated. "One danger is that the genitals are correct subsequent to the foot within the body's mind maps. don't fret approximately it. " He laughed nervously. "All that is nice, surgeon. yet you continue to do not comprehend. you notice, i really event my orgasm in my foot. And consequently it truly is a lot larger than it was once simply because it really is now not simply constrained to my genitals. " sufferers do not make up such tales. Ninety−nine percentage of the time they're telling the reality, and if it kind of feels incomprehensible, it's always simply because we aren't shrewdpermanent sufficient to determine what is going on of their brains. This gentleman used to be telling me that he occasionally loved intercourse extra after his amputation. The curious implication is that it isn't simply the tactile sensation that transferred to his phantom however the erotic sensations of sexual excitement in addition. (A colleague prompt I name this publication "The guy Who Mistook His Foot for a Penis. ") This makes me ask yourself concerning the foundation of foot fetishes in basic humans, a topic that—although now not precisely crucial to our psychological lifestyles— everyone seems to be inquisitive about. (Madonna's e-book, intercourse, has a complete bankruptcy dedicated to the foot. ) the normal reason behind foot fetishes comes, now not unusually, from Freud. The penis resembles the foot, he argues, for this reason the fetish. but when that is the case, why no longer another elongated physique half? Why no longer a hand fetish or a nostril fetish? I recommend that the reason being conveniently that during the mind the foot lies correct subsequent to the genitalia. perhaps even many folks so−called general humans have a little bit cross−wiring, which might clarify why we adore to have our feet sucked. The trips of technology are frequently tortuous with many unforeseen twists and turns, yet I by no means suspected that i'd start looking a proof for phantom limbs and prove explaining foot fetishes to boot. Given those assumptions, different predictions keep on with. 10 What occurs while the penis is amputated? Carcinoma of the penis is typically taken care of with amputation, and plenty of of those sufferers adventure a phantom penis—sometimes even phantom erections! In such circumstances you'll anticipate that stimulation of the toes will be felt within the phantom penis.

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