TED talk by Jill Bolte Taylor: How it feels to have a stroke

Interesting talk!!!

Of course I disagree with her closing remark:  we need to pick the left hemisphere, or we will cease to exist as our selves…

I do understand the ‘lala’ land she describes and the brains states…they are not dissimilar from the ones I experienced myself when I went through a near-death experience.

I, too, have had the brain-state of connectedness to all, expansive, one with the universe and all that other stuff the meditation guru’s tout as a desirable state.  What is more – having experienced it once, I can induce it at will with only minor meditation effort.  (I don’t know if this is an aspect of my Aspieness or not, but it often takes me much longer to achieve something than others – but once I have reached a physical state, I can re-create it with much less effort.)

And while I had that sense of ‘this is profound’ – and, you could see the physiological changes in the speaker in the video just as she re-counted her tale prove just how profound the experience was for her – and while I understood perfectly well that this is the ‘Nirvana’ , I did not like it. Yes, it was ‘blissful’, I’ll admit that.

It’s just that the cost was too high.

I was just 10 years or so old when I experienced this, so I could not properly verbalize the aspects of the experience had on forming my world view.  Perhaps I will still have trouble explaining it…but, let me try to simplify:

What kind of person, when forced to choose one or the other, would pick bliss over being true to one’s identity?

Certainly not I!!!

And while she may not realize that that is what she was doing, it is infinitely comforting to have a professional acknowledge that this desire for collectivism is the product of a diseased brain!


The ‘Filter Bubble’

There is a most brilliant (and relatively short) TED Talk – a must see for anyone who uses a search engine.

Slowly but surely, most search engines and social networks are tracking each of our histories and editing out things they think we would not like.  This means that searching for identical keywords can produce vastly different search result for different people – which is fine, IF we could ‘opt out’ (at least some of the time)…but most of us don’t even know this is happening!

This, in my never-humble-opinion, is a problem.  And it is the topic of the above mentioned TED Talk by Eli Pariser – he refers to it as ‘the filter bubble’.

He raises a lot of good questions.

One possible answer to at least one of these questions is a search engine that markets itself with proud claims that it will not bubble or track you! If you have not heard of them, take a peek at DuckDuckGo.

While on the topic of technology, Michael Geist has been doing some important work reporting on the Digital lock dissent.  He has also posted a most excellent ‘link-library’ to help people support their arguments when they try to dispell the myths the digital lockers are promulgating.

H/T:  Tyr