Joseph E. LeDoux: Synaptic Self How Our Brains Become Who We Are

BOOK Synaptic Self How Our Brains Become Who We Are by Joseph E. LeDoux –

An enormous snooze fest My dissertation research is essentially about what makes us who we are so I was really looking forward to reading this book LeDoux left whole bodies of research regarding early life experience and how it influences later emotionality and the brain completely untapped It was like a textbook with related chapters but nothing that connected it all together into a coherent view oint Super disappointing A wealth of information about the brain and the way that it communicates The main focus of the book is the synaptic connections within the brain The most interesting chapters for me were The Most Unaccountable of Machinery Building the Brain The Emotional Brain Revisited and Synaptic Sickness I thoroughly enjoyed the description of how the brain is built whilst the baby is developing and further on as it grows into an adult The beginning chapters were essential in order to get an unde Cutting edge in the field of applied neurobiology to sychological emotional development and the role of synapses in the brain specifically There is a bunch of Brain Based Learning BBL in the K 12 classrooms and not all of it is likely good by way of any grounding in scientific data Still the idea of teaching to the brain has taken hold I used this as a text when it came co teaching an advanced Cognition and Learning class with a SPED rofessor back when I was an ED The Vavasour Macbeth prof myself Joseph Ledoux is uite a character with a synthetic mind and an imaginative descriptor of brain workings and is also a musician wholays in a NYC band when not teaching at NYU I also heard him at a conference on the brain and education and he was fantastic While enjoyed his work immensely without some background in basic brain neurology though it was difficult for a cohort of mostly rincipals aiming for superintendency jobs to get through and absorb One great review of the class said Ledoux LeDon t Loved that This book introduces the idea that we meaning our memory is stored in the strength of our synaptic connectionsThe author is too verbose to Basically I was hoping for something a bit lighter And I was disappointed to read about all the testing on animals I like reading about science and the brain but this book was difficult to slog through It got technical uickly with chemicals and athways given throughout the book I learned a lot but was very discouraged that neuroscience studies involve conducting research on animals The author often referenced how one result was found after Crisis of the Strauss Divided putting lesions in mice brains or a drug was found after locking up monkeys in cages to make them aggressive and anxious Reading this led me to learn about US experimentation on chimpanzees which I find really upsetting I can t believe our country still hasn tassed legislation to totally ban research on chimps I would ut this book into the category of interesting but not fun to read Why Because I m interested in all that cool new neuroscience research but I really had to force myself through some of this It is very technical and although it has the appearance of being accessible to the layperson it truly is not I have a little background in brain hysiology but still found myself having to reread VARSITY ABDL (Age Play, Forced Regression, Enema, Domestic Discipline, Spanking Romance) paragraphs andassages to clarify what LeDoux was talking about The diagrams didn t seem to help much either On the upside of things the chapters on the emotional brain were a little easier to get through In the end I m not even sure I read the whole book because I ended up skipping around until I found something interesting and understandable Either I need neuroscience classes or LeDoux needs to dumb it down to make it accessible to the non scientists among us In simple terms this book by neuroscientist LeDoux states that we are who we are because of how our brains are connected Circuitry is important than the theory of chemicalneurotransmitter balance Although LeDoux Road House - The Novel points to the importance of neurotransmitters in modulating synaptic transmission he thinks that the overall connectivity of circuits is important At least that s what I got from the bookI have to admit to skimming through somearts that were a little above my head but much of it is Gnosis perfectly understandable to laypeople oreople in the medical Left to Die-a First Hand Account of Life in the Superdome during Hurricane Katrina profession LeDouxoi. Following up his 1996 The Emotional Brain the world renowned brain expert Dolphin Diaries Bind-Up presents a groundbreaking work that tells arofound story how the little spaces between the neurons the brain's synapses are the channels through which we think feel imagine act and remember In 1996 Joseph LeDoux's The Emotional Brain resented a revelatory.

Nts to the research done so far on the brain and adds to the historical knowledge his own research He works mainly on the workings of the brain in the resence of fear and states of anxiety and his findings are based on this research I had a little trouble reading about the various ways that scientists discover things about the brain Much of the research is done through animal studies and often involves destroying Flood Legends parts of the brain to see what happens or many times through learning and conditioning Monkey and rat research is used mainly and if you are anti animal research you ll find it hard to read about that aspect of the work Being aerson who has dealt with anxiety and depression as well as chronic low self esteem this book had much that interested me I knew before this that Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and biofeedback worked for me as well as SSRIs Now I know why I also feel a sense of optimism that I really can change my thinking The Best Of Saint Louis patterns with some hard work The brain learns things and it can be hard to unlearn thoseatterns But the brilliant thing is that the brain wants to learn so creating new The Brother-Offended Checklist patterns is relatively easy withersistence This is why I feel that meditation yoga and overall stress reduction is going to be very important to my overall mental health Psychology and neuroscience are really trying to accomplish the same thingHere s just a snippet of the amazing things he talks about it one section araphrased hereThere s a two regions of your hippocampus called the CA3 region and the dentate gyrus The hippocampus is known to help with learning and memory rocessing When there are elevated cortisol levels as in Cushing s disease or in chronic anxiety or depressive states the cells of the CA3 region actually degenerate and die The cells in the dentate gyrus normally have high rates of neurogenesis or growth of new cells which may be key in the forming of new memories or learning In the Detour (Something in Common, presence of high cortisol these cells do not regenerate The brains ofeople with high cortisol have smaller than average hippocampus regions With therapy or drugs these regions typically grow again LeDoux also マジック・ツリーハウス〈1〉恐竜の谷の大冒険 points here to the work of Mark Sopolosky who wrote the book Why zebras don t get ulcers which is on my reading listLeDouxoints out that we learn explicitly and implicitly that is consciously and unconsciously While we may not be able to control the implicit learning we certainly can have an effect by Bear Creek Road purposely thinking in certain ways a la cognitive behavioral therapy Soositive thinking isn t just some hippie guru Good Authority Good Authority panacea it makes real scientific sense AwesomeMy next book is going to be a book on optimism by Michael J Fox because I d like to readositive things right now A wildly educational Carneycopia popular ISH science book for those somewhere between novice and veteran in the field of neuroscience basic understanding ofsychology and chemistrybiology recommended LeDoux adeptly and thoroughly covers basics of neuroscience and brain anatomy before exploring both the extremely micro synaptic level and the fairly macro applications to theories of consciousness and self identity While he is noticeably stronger in the rigorous scientific aspects of the topic the broader speculations are still great food for thought The book is well written and not overly dense though I m hesitant to call it Captives of New Pompeii (New Pompeii, popular science as it s not exactly simplified either I m not afraid to say thatarts of this book were very complicated In some of the middle chapters all I could really comprehend was that there sure was a lot of advanced chemistry going on between brain cells Chemistry was never my best subjectBut the book s central oint is very well resented everything about ourselves is a conseuence of how our brains are Beard Necessities (Winston Brothers, put together and how our brains areut together is a conseuence of the genes we start with and the fine details of our environment This fits with what I have come to believe the nature of the mind and the soul to be so I took to the thesis heartily The complexity involved in manifesting that Alfie Outdoors principle in a real human brain however is nothing short of dazzlingIarticularly found the chapter on mental illnesses to be informative There s a fashionable backlash these days against the over. Examination of the biological bases of our emotions and memories Now the world renowned expert on the brain has The Agile Team Handbook, 2nd Edition produced with a groundbreaking work that tells arofound story how the little spaces between the neurons the brain's synapses are the channels through which we think act imagine feel and remember Synapses encode the es.

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Medication of America that isn t wholly unjustified LeDoux admits that drugs which act on large areas of the brain as today s drugs do are not able to Her Mothers Daughter precisely target the intended brain systems and so cause many unpleasant side effects But the entire book adds up to a solid defense of therinciple that drugs are a legitimate approach to dealing with mental illness If our memories attitudes behaviors and so on are all tied to synaptic activity and synaptic activity is electro chemical in nature then it stands to reason that chemicals can be used to change the mind in beneficial ways This book is very logical and scientific Howard Stern Comes Again particularly in its acknowledgment that much remains unknown and that many conclusions cannot be applied universally There are freuent references to ongoing experiments and studies testing new dogma and exploring long standing uestions Some of those uestions may even be answered by now but the sheer number of them means that exciting research will no doubt continue for a very long time It s that sense of e I m sometimes told that theopular science books I read don t do an adeuate job of relaying the true scientific underbelly of the subject being talked about That everything is being dumbed down and simplified to reach a wider audience and keep things interesting While there are certainly elements of truth in that Spellbound philosophy I think that s being unfair to many of books that really do a fantastic job of introducingeople to these concepts without forcing them to be an expert I say all that to Cant Fake This preface the fact that this is NOT one of those booksSynaptic Self while almost certianly a simplified version of what Ledoux understands about the field is not for the lay reader Ledoux talks about neurons actionotentials neurotransmitters and neuromodulation different areas and structures in the brain synaptic lasticity etcand while he describes difficult concepts in detail and uses drawings when applicable if you have no familiarity with the brain or the nervous system coming in I can imagine getting less than intended out of this bookor alternatively it might force you to do side research on your own and be an incredibly valuable learning experience If you ve read Pinker s How the Mind Works imagine a neuroscientific explanation of much of the material covered in that book Early on Ledoux makes the following statement My notion of ersonality is retty simple it s that your self the essence of who you are reflects atterns of interconnectivity between neurons in your brain Connections between neurons known as synapses are the main channels of information flow and storage in the brain Most of what the brain does is accomplished by synaptic transmission between neurons and by calling upon the information encoded by Paying Daddys Debt past transmission across synapsesThe rest of the bookroceeds to delve into the mechanics of this He splits the brain up into three main systemscognition emotion motivation describing how each of them work and then explaining how they all work togetherthough he uses these three as a simple distinction and doesn t argue there are just three Stripes of Gehenna physical systems within the brain But while there is some serious neuroscience content in here Ledoux does a respectable job of zooming in and out and speaking at whatever level is appropriate to get hisoint across Understanding the self is than just understanding neurons it s understanding systems of neurons and understanding how the functioning of those systems translates into behavior thoughts and emotions Ledoux integrates both Cheerleader For Hire psychology andhilosophy into the conversation where applicable and has a great natural ability to help the reader make sense of the difficult issues More than anything though Ledoux s main Time Slips point is that many of the historical arguments about nature vs nurture are all asking the wrong uestion It s obvious that both are right but what is important to remember is that underlying instinct memory thought emotion learning behavioral change etcare the synaptic connections in the brain and the synaptic changes that occur throughout life And that if we want to understand how the brain works and how we become who we are we need to understand how these connections are formed and how they can be changed. Sence ofersonality enabling each of us to function as a distinctive integrated individual from moment to moment Exploring the functioning of memory the synaptic basis of mental illness and drug addiction and the mechanism of self awareness Synaptic Self is a rovocative and mind expanding work that is destined to become a classi.