How Beliefs are Formed and How they Have Impact on Us

Just had to ‘press’ this brilliant article.

via How Beliefs are Formed and How they Have Impact on Us.

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How Beliefs are Formed and How they Have Impact on Us

June 9, 2014

How Beliefs are Formed and How they Have Impact on Us

With advanced brain imaging methods, especially with the Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI), scientists, the last two decades, acquired a phenomenal opportunity to see the natural function of the brain and to watch all these things unfolding in real time in front of them.

Before the contribution of brain illustration in real time comes, scientists believed that the process of cell division is that creates new brain cells, called neurogenesis, weakened early in a person’s life and stopped completely when he reached adulthood. Similarly, the process of neuroplasticity, ie the ability of the brain to change the shape and structure of the compounds, in response to our experiences, until recently been considered exclusively as a phenomenon of infancy.

Not anymore. The profound discoveries of the last two decades show that neurogenesis and neuroplasticity is continuing during the entire life of a human. Regardless of your age, your brain is perfectly capable of creating entirely new neural pathways.

During the event of an incident, our perception about it is expressed in the form of a clear pattern of neural bursts through specific synapses (brain compounds). In some cases, this procedure not only includes the firing of electrochemical impulses through existing brain networks, but also the development of new connections and new neural networks. In other words, the brain can change its structure in response to new information. The more powerful and emotionally charged these information is – as in the case of trauma, the more rapid and important the development of new neural associations will be. And the more these information are repeated, the more they tend to form new neural pathways.

Imagine what happens when it rains on a mountaintop. As the rain flows into the hillside, creeks dig paths between the gravel and pine needles, which are scattered on the ground. Every time it rains, more and more water goes down, digging deeper and deeper into this network of paths. Eventually the trail becomes a torrent and then a river. During a storm potency, indeed, is much more likely that these torrents that plummet, to create deep plains on their way to the base of the mountain.

synapse-1Synapses that fired together, are joined together

And this is not just an expression; it is something that literally happens. Through repetition, what starts as a response to a single event ends gradually strengthened, as our synapses develop new neural tissue, creating an even denser network of nerve fibers. Thus, this pattern converted in a strongly grounded neural network that represents a given way of perceiving the world and situations around us.

Let’s use a different metaphor. Imagine how houseplants change position as they grow up and turning towards the sun. In the same way, the networks of our synapses are changing direction and literally grow towards our emotionally more intense thoughts and experiences. This is howour beliefs are shaped: we literally grow them, like they are plants inside our minds.

As a result, the ideas with which we come to live, have more power than the senses and are deeper than our thoughts. Beliefs are thought patterns so embedded in our neural networks, which are automatic, as established ways of thinking. It is the foundation of our psychological structure.

Excerpts from the book “Let’s talk about you” (“Ας μιλήσουμε για σένα” – Greek book) by George Pratt and Peter Lambrou, Dioptra Publishing

via How Beliefs are Formed and How they Have Impact on Us.

Thank you for sharing such an informative post.

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4 thoughts on “How Beliefs are Formed and How they Have Impact on Us

  1. “Accidentally hit the email notice of this blog. Had just started reading the scriptures for my next turn as Lay Worship Leading. They set off a flurry of ideas and excitement about getting free of the prejudices and limits we inherited from our parents. Then this showed up and I am almost dancing with excitement. I love it when I can see God’s footprints clearly enough to follow them. Yay, Yogaleigh, yay Metaphizgirl, yay God!!!!!!

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  2. Great article. I enjoyed it a lot. I can see that neural plasticity at work from using the internet a lot. I realized that my attention span for paperback novels had become really short. After a year of not reading any, I literally had to retrain my brain to stay focused long enough to read more than a few pages at a time! That was a worrying and frustrating feeling. And makes me concerned about the effect this has on the quality of critical thinking skills in society more generally, for people who are not aware of this.

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