- Education and Science
How Does The Mind Work
The brain with its millions of nerve cells is the essential organ of mind.
Just as the battery by its chemical activities evolves electricity, so the brain cell by its vital activity evolves nerve force, of which the highest form is mind.
Without the brain, there can be no mind.
As the chief focus of the nervous system, the brain, with its vast number of cells closely interlinked, is related to all the tissues and organs of the body by means of nerves. These are fine structures, and may be likened to telegraph wires, which convey messages to and from the central exchange, or brain.
The reception by the brain cells of messages from our various sense organs arouses what is called "sensation" and consciousness, from a physiological point of view, is simply awareness of sensation.
All mind functioning is therefore primarily dependent on sensation and sensation is dependent on efficient sense organs and healthy nerves to transmit impulses when these sense organs are stimulated. In turn, consciousness depends upon the integrity of the brain cells and should these cells be injured, as in concussion from a blow or damaged by the poisons of alcohol or disease, then consciousness may be reduced or completely suspended.
A vigorous and efficient mind is very necessary if success and happiness are to be achieved. In the first place, it is very important to be born with healthy nerve cells for it is impossible to have a first class mind with a third-class brain. In the second place, it is imperative that the brain cells should be adequately supplied with nourishment.
All forms of mental activity use up energy in the nerve cells and this need is met with by an increased flow of blood containing nutriment to the brain. A healthy mind therefore, necessitates pure and abundant blood, with a vigorous heart and elastic vessels to circulate it to the brain. A diminished blood supply to the brain from hardened and narrowed arteries may lead to early senility, and poisons from a fever such as typhoid may cause a delirium.
Another essential of mental development and mental health is a sufficiency and variety of impressions derived from stimulation of the senses. Deficiency of such stimulation, as may arise from deafness or blindness, leads to intellectual impairment unless the defective sense is compensated for by the intensive development of another sense. In simple language a healthy brain needs good food and plenty of exercise, and only with a healthy brain is it possible to possess a healthy mind.