Notes from An Alien

~ Explorations In Reading, Writing & Publishing ~

Tag Archives: brain

Brain & Mind ~ Writers Need Both . . .


Aren’t Brain and Mind just two words for the same thing?

Not in my world :-)

My world has physics and metaphysics

Very simply, physics deals with the physical world.

And, in my dictionary, metaphysics means:

“the branch of philosophy that deals with the first principles of things, including abstract concepts such as being, knowing, identity, time, and space”

Of course, physics deals with some things in the physical world that are very difficult to explain since they’re invisible—gravity and magnetism are two.

And, metaphysics becomes difficult to understand when some folks claim that all the abstract concepts dealt with—Love, Mercy, Faith, Justice—are merely distilled from physical existence.

Plenty of intelligent people over the aeons have shared their experience of metaphysics as a realm “beyond” the physical—some merely calling it the arena of Values.

I’m even of the opinion that Words are Metaphysical

For now, let me say that I believe (and have experienced enough to “Know”) that Physics is used by the Brain and Metaphysics is used by the Mind

So a writer would then need to train their mind along with their brain.

So, if a writer lives a “full” and “authentic” life (which, to me, would include reading omnivorously) their brain will translate events in the world (and words in books) into concepts their minds can use for creating written works.

As far as training the mind with reading, check out the post, Why Writers Must Read In Order To Become Authors.

Now for the brain

Naturally, if the brain is the two-way portal between mind and world, just living will give it a good work-out.

But what about specific brain-training?

I may have found a space you can use to improve your brain’s functioning

It’s called Lumosity.

I’ve signed up and taken it out for a spin and it seems worth a try.

The claim for me: 60-69 Age Group — 15 mins a day for 3 months — 97% Improvement

Since I got 3 days of training free and their nominal fee to continue is $5.99/month (30-day money-back guarantee), it would seem I could nearly have a new brain in three months and only lose about $18 if it doesn’t work :-)

Seems though it’s very likely it could work.

Some statements from their site:

“The human brain continues to create new neurons throughout life. Exercise and cognitive stimulation can impact the number of new cells created in your brain.”

“Scientists have discovered that the brain can reorganize itself when confronted with new challenges, even through adulthood. Based on this research, Lumosity’s exercises are engineered to train a range of cognitive functions, from working memory to fluid intelligence.”

“Scientific studies have shown that Lumosity training can improve your ability to dynamically allocate attention, which sharpens memory and processing skills.”

“Lumosity exercises are designed by neuroscientists and are based on independent scientific research from institutions like Harvard, Stanford and Berkeley.”

“Research shows that training just 10-15 minutes a day on Lumosity can lead to dramatic improvements over time.”

“Lumosity users report positive and often remarkable results that include: better face-name recall, faster problem-solving skills, and a quicker memory.”

“Adjust your priorities over time—Memory, Attention, Speed, Flexibility, Problem Solving.”

I may or may not continue using the site—feeling right now that my brain’s been pretty well-trained so far and getting good daily work-outs but………

If you go visit, I’d love to know what you think in our Comments.

Actually, I’d love to know what you think in our Comments even if you don’t go there :-)
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Mind or Reality ~ Which Came First?


There have been various explorations on this blog about the writer’s mind and the reader’s mind. And, we’ve also explored various realities.

Try putting both words , “reality” and “mind” together, in the search box at the upper right, the one with the little magnifying glass, and you can see what we’ve already discussed.

Today, I want to broaden the discussion out to anyone’s mind and how it either creates reality or is created by reality.

I’m not going to state a definite opinion (though, you might infer it from the “voice” of this post).

So:

A child is born with a mind. Does it have patterns already associated with it? Or, is it “blank”?

If it already has pre-existent patterns of operation, does that mean that it reaches out and molds whatever is outside the body into a “personal” reality?

If it’s blank, does it just accept whatever exists outside it as fact and build on that?

What about thoughts and feelings? Are they both part of the mind?

Why should it matter what we think or feel about the mind and reality?

If you could read and understand that last sentence you may have a clue about why it could matter

There are enough studies and articles about mind and reality to build a staircase to the Moon and there seems to be no strong consensus on which came first.

Oh! There’s also the debate about whether the brain and the mind are the same thing or if the mind somehow includes the brain but operates “above” it.

And, we probably shouldn’t ignore the various views on what the word “reality” actually means and the various “kinds” of realities people postulate: social reality, personal reality, physical reality, imaginary reality, consensus reality, etc.

My reality recently got a kick in its mental/emotional ass. My view of the world and the importance of various supposed priorities is evolving and mutating. I’ve always wondered about what’s real and how I could know it and the last week has taken my wonderment to a new playing field.

The Game continues but the Rules are changing

If enough of you comment on the questions of this post, I’ll weave a part two tomorrow. If the comments are sparse, I may weave tomorrow’s post out of thin air.
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