Re: TECH/SCI: Brain Changes

From: \[ Robert-Coyote \] (
Date: Mon Apr 24 2000 - 12:42:46 MDT

re:"Red is no longer real red"

We have the objective measure of red in wavelength,
we have the subjective observation of red, and that has never been "real"
red, just ask your cat what red and blue are from its perspective.

Consider the data glut many of us are experiencing may create a relevancy
crisis, and the brain IS adapting by filtering extraneous data via reticular
activating mechanism ?

"All things appear and disappear because of the concurrence of causes and
conditions. Nothing ever exists entirely alone; everything is in relation to
everything else."

The article by Casey Walker in Feed magazine has left me a bit perplexed.
I'm not quite dubious, but I certainly would appreciate more information
from someone(s) on the list. Can anyone explain if the following
statements are valid and if so, how much and what type of research has been

Specific statements that caught my eye:

1. "... senses of smell, taste, touch, sight and hearing have decreased at
a rate of nearly one percent per year."

        While I agree that we may use our senses less than we did in the jungles,
I'm not entirely sure that we have eliminated the capacity. We do know
that people who listen to loud music (usually rock music) have a decreased
auditory sense, but I'm not sure that this applies to everyone.

        This statement also does not take into account specific sensory
augmentations and prosthetics that have increased individual's sensory

2. "Our brain is not adapting."

3. "Red is no longer real red."

This extract is taken from the heading "Thresholds of the Biological" (page
7 or 8).

"Recent studies out of Germany -- from Tuebingen University and
Gesellschaft fur Rationelle Psychologie in Munich -- show that our
contemporary environments have, in fact, already changed our biology. In
the last twenty years, from repeated testings of four thousand
participants, the senses of smell, taste, touch, sight, and hearing have
decreased at a rate of nearly one percent per year. "15 years ago, Germans
could distinguish 300,000 sounds. Today, on average, they only make it to
180,000. Many children stagnate at 100,000. That is enough for hip hop and
rap music, but it is insufficient for the subtleties of a classical
symphony." And, GRP studies showed "generation gaps" between brains formed
before 1948, brains formed between 1948 and 1968, and brains formed since.
The newer the brain, the more "dissonance" it can tolerate. New brains
accomodate floods of contradictory information as data without, apparently,
fighting the crush of time for synthesis -- a neurological process
amounting, in the researchers view, to a loss in what the brain can bring
to consciousness. Data shows that the unconscious has risen from
eighty-seven percent of total brain processing to ninety-four percent. Dr.
Henner Ertel says, "We are seeing the largest and fastest breakthrough
since the dawn of consciousness. Our brain is not adapting. It is rebelling
against the world and changing it [the world] by changing itself. Red is no
longer red. Sweet smells begin to stink. In the next century, different
people will be living in a new world."


Natasha Vita-More:
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