Wednesday, March 10, 2010

The brain has a great ability to betray you.

The brain has a great ability to betray you. Betraying you in the positive sense, that is.

At some stages of life, when you are entering a new domain, you would sometimes feel as if you are not quite up to it. For example, when you start to learn a new subject, it might seem that it is too difficult for you. You simply cannot imagine the you who would be capable of doing that incredible thing. Like speaking a foreign language. Like riding a bicycle.

But then, your brain has this truly remarkable ability to reconfigure itself. You cannot supervise the details of the process consciously. The brain's network, by modifying the synaptic connections between the billions of neurons in the cortex and other areas, does it automatically for you. All you need to have is the courage to risk the new, and the insensitivity to failures.

The brain betrays you in beautiful ways. You may be unable to conduct a specific task no matter how hard you try. You may fail 99 times, and yet, no the 100th trial, success might come to you like a miracle. The change might seem quite abrupt for you. In fact, the brain has been reconfiguring itself by bits all the while. It is that the internal change does not become manifest until it reaches the threshold by accumulation.

A wonderful life is one in which the brain keeps betraying you every day, in a quite unexpected and rewarding way. The only thing you need to do is keep trying.


Yuzu said...

I will read today's journal over again. Thank you so much.

Febria said...

I like these words "..unexpected and rewarding..". Pls keep up the good work Dr. Mogi.

Rie Ebihara said...

My name is Rie Ebihara, I'm engaging myself on docterate study in Athens in Greece.It's the first time to leave my comment on your blog, while I read it everyday. Just I'd like to express my gratitude for you because your words always give me greatly powerful energy to continue my study in a foreign country. Thank you, with my sincerity. I hope that someday my brain will betray me in a beautiful way as you wrote today, though I won't forget that our great effort is prerequisite for our progress in any field.

Takeru said...

Nice to meet you Mr Mogi!
I've known that you write a blog in English on CNN express April issue.
From this year, I've jumped into new domain that I've thought as beyond my competece. I am a Japanese English teacher at a local English school. I still often hit the wall, but I always say to myself "Every wall is door"
I will keep trying and wait the time when my brain btrays me!
Thank you for your nice blog! I will keep checking it!