- Education and Science»
- Psychology & Psychiatry
The Third Brain Theory
A closer look into what triggers an "Alpha Mind"
Around my high school years I stumbled upon a book that enlightened me to realize a few things about myself as an athlete and in which direction that must have shaped my brain. Now I know that most 16 year olds don't sit around on their spare time and think about the intricate things that make up our processing, but endulge me for endulging my curiosity. After reading a few more sources I saw that there were new studies out of people learning more about well-performing athletes and their brain functioning, indicating there was a development in how the new generations were forming what they were calling a "Third Brain". Now this "third brain", so-to-say, emerged after constant long-term exposure to needing to use hightened abilities, such as quick reflexes and things that activate certain amounts and types of brain waves like emotions. The easiest example I know is when like a high-end football player in the NFL has to make a split-second decision physically and mentally in order to ensure he won't get brutally injured.
As there's been an increase in the amount of alpha brain wave tv shows and articles in circulation lately, it made me remember learning in school how we are capable of doing very extraordinary things when using a hightened amount of brain activity. I remember the story of the mom who saw her car rolling back towards her children and she lifted the car up with her bare hands and an adrenaline rush to save her kids. We as a species are designed to resolve complex emotional issues and the lesson is the quicker you can do so the better off you are. Being in that hightened emotional state, the brain is firing neurons faster, stronger and more efficient before a second is even up on the clock. At that point, some tend to use both sides of their brain to solve an issue.
In this case, the notion of "what you put in is what you'll get out" holds some truth; the more you work on the connection between your physical and mental parts of any experience the more you'll tap into using these abilities as a resource. To understand this more I started relating to it from a personal basis; I had been playing softball from a very young age, my focus and goals were always keyed into improving better than the day before. But when I hit age 17 til I stopped playing softball on almost a daily basis when I was 20, I noticed a big difference in my defensive driving capabilities. On multiple occasions I'd have a friend in the car with me when there'd be someone else on the road who would run a stop sign or light, and after I'd swirve and brake at the right times to get us out of any type of collision they've all said, "I could've sworn they were gona hit us". And at that time in the early part of my life this education really helped open a lot of my mind to know any person wanting to better expand their view of choices could always increase your odds of living a better life (being that the more choices you have the better decisions you can make).
Being an athlete is not the only great way to learn how to integrate your brain waves, in fact we tend to use them a lot throughout our day just in other forms. But what the third brain theory delves into tends to get a little more complicated. Our bodies are made up of distinctive inate things (such as protecting your eyes from an object that's coming at them by blinking), and those inate details in us are from deeply rooted genetics and well refined environmental attributes that were necessary to evolve with over time. The third brain, in that sense, is showing that we as a species seem to be growing and expanding more parts of the brain and how we use those parts by "linking" them together when needed. It may be a glorified definition of multitasking, but creating these waves for our brains gives way to an expansion of the mind that could change humans completely in a 100 years or so (or less!).
Using these types of senses tends to morph a normal brain into a more "normal" also. As evolution works, these senses have shown more "solidified" attributes in that people are more in touch with their personalities; people tend to be more confident in their lives and decisions, have a higher sense of self, believes more in self, etc. (and is more technically "relaxed" while doing it!). It's a simple input output thing; someone continually working on themselves to improve their skills, athletically or whatnot, will be more prepared to handle challenges if they arise at any point in their game (practice makes perfect). But, as usually with most things, there's more than one way to achieve these senses if this was your goal. Many researchers have believed, and still believe, that certain types of meditation can help get you to an "alpha" point (but it almost seems there's more room to support the notion that the "God Experience" can help you achieve this more than just meditation alone will). Some people even claim a lot of these waves are created by the gut, literally; I guess it gives the notion of "gut instincts" or "listening to your gut feeling" more credability.
However in any case, what I basically summed up was that if I just kept working on myself and capabilities in whatever area of my life I would eventually achieve just that. I know there is no ceiling when it comes to exploring and evolving oneself, so any method I choose to use would lead me to expanding myself no matter what. If you're relaxed because you're confident that you can swirve out of the way of that semi that might cause crash into your car, you might increase the probablity of a longer lifespan for yourself and others.