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|THE HUMAN MIND|
|This page presents
a few images and excerpts from the book The Human Mind of the trilogy
SPELLBOUND, unpublished work © 2005-2008 Martin Dak. No
part of this webpage may be reproduced without a
written consent from the copyright owner. (Don't even try. You
will not get it.) Violation of copyright will be
compensation will be sought.
Biological processes of the human body are controlled by the autonomic nervous system (ANS), but the overall control of the human organism is carried out by the central nervous system (CNS). The CNS receives information about the body via nerves. The spinal cord then delivers signals obtained from the senses to the lowest brain level.
The brain consists of two hemispheres, and each hemisphere has four cognitive brain levels that are identified in figure 1. The brain levels have analogous cognitive organization. They reason, have memories and volition, and process information from internal and external senses. Higher brain levels have more advanced abilities, but lower brain levels often perform unique functions. The cortical system (CS) is the most advanced brain level. The basal system (BS) is the prettiest brain level. It is pretty fast and pretty smart. The habit system (HS) is most active in initiation of activities and in procedural skills. The alert system (AS) can process senses, access memories, and show needs and volition. In many tasks, all brain levels interact in complex ways to produce the appropriate function and behavior.
|Figure 1: Brain Levels
Examination of connectivity at different brain levels reveals strikingly similar patterns, especially in the cortical and basal systems. The right cortex (affective mind) is dominant, sets strategies, analyzes solutions, checks reality, and issues orders to act. The left cortex (semantic mind) is a very fine tool, but only a tool. The lateralization of semantic and affective modules alternates every other brain level, as is shown in figure 2. The LH stands for the left hemisphere, and the RH stands for the right hemisphere. The cognitive properties of the affective and semantic modules are characterized on the webpage Intelligence. Also see the Brain vs Computer and Multiple Personality pages for further information about the human brain and mind.
|Figure 2: Crossover
The human brain should have some mechanism for coordination of the faculties of various brain levels. Cerebellum is the master controller of the brain. The coordinating role of the cerebellum has been recognized not only in motor planning  and motor responses [1319, 1698], but also in higher order functions , such as recognition memory processes , hemispheric turn-taking [18, 436, 585], advanced linguistic tasks , cognitive and affective functions , verbal memory, visuospatial functions , dynamic eye control , and expectation .
Vision has remained mysterious because of unfathomable interplay between the cognitive brain levels. Incidentally, the study of vision does become an exploration of the visual abilities of individual brain levels and their mutual relationships. In summary, the affective modules inherently look to the left, and the semantic modules inherently look to the right. All brain levels are able to mutually exchange visual messages horizontally and vertically despite looking the other way or receiving an image in the wrong orientation. The instant sharing is supported by multiple image representations and by translations of multiple reference frames . The basic visual traits of the various brain levels are shown in figure 3.
The motor system is an executive network that obeys cognitive decisions. The conceptual depiction of the motor system (seen from behind) is in figure 4. The colored hands and pathways symbolize that the alert and basal systems move the ipsilateral limbs, and the habit and cortical systems move the contralateral limbs. The lateralization agrees with that of vision and ensures that the correct brain level always views the activated hand.
4: Motor System
The two hemispheres of an intact brain are connected by a prominent bundle of neural fibers, the corpus callosum . When the corpus callosum (and the adjacent interhemispheric fibers) are surgically cut, the hemispheres remain connected only through the brainstem . The spared fibers allow the left and right halves of the alert and habit systems to share information as before, but the left and right sides of the basal and cortical systems become separated.
It has been reported that complete transection of all interhemispheric fibers in the cortex causes intellectual isolation of the hemispheres, and the hemispheres start acting independently. The unauthorized acts by the semantic mind must be a shock to the affective mind because it normally controls the whole organism. The semantic mind only pays attention to its domain of influence  and probably enjoys the newly found freedom. Despite the hemispheric independence, split-brain patients deny the notion that there might be another consciousness in the brain .
Some deficits in the split brain are difficult to explain by means of mere hemispheric isolation. One of the reasons is that a split-brain patient has no functional cortical system. The cortex is out of the picture, and the divided basal system rules over the brain. Figure 5 shows the surviving brain segments in true colors. The dead segments are dark.
5: The Big Cut
split-brain patient talks, exhibits no external signs of a disorder,
and is considered a great
No attention is paid to the internal life of the patient, or her
ability to function in the real world, or the detail that her cortex
has been disconnected from the brain and put to permanent sleep. Hey, what's the problem? Nobody
Note: The crossed red and blue pathways below the basal system are not cut. Had they been cut, they would have readily exposed the psychopathy of both the patient and her neurosurgeon.
All references are captured in the original work and will not be repeated here.
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|Unpublished work © 2005-2017 Martin Dak. All rights reserved.|