Our #Brain, our #Emotions and evidence for our #Spirit | #Jesus #spiritual #body #psychology #limbicsystem #science

Hello,

Did you know my father used to be a scientist? No? Well now you do…

Anyway lol, today’s chit chat will be about the brain, emotions and how in my mind they prove that there’s a God. FYI, the featured image above is an actual poster of the brain I have in my room. Let’s go!

Emotions like fear and love are carried out by the limbic system, which is located in the temporal lobe of your brain. The structures are highlighted in the image below:

The limbic system is made up of multiple parts but the centre of emotional processing is the Amygdala, this receives input from other brain functions, like memory and attention. Let’s break down the itty bit’s to understand what’s going on in our heads!

 

Amygdala – (highlighted in pink!)

Almond shaped and responsible for multiple emotional responses such as: love, fear, anger and sexual desire. In animal studies from Shippensburg University, found that stimulating or removing the Amygdala can alter emotions:

  • Electrical activation causes aggression
  • Surgical removal results in indifferent emotional reactions.

Therefore, damage to the Amygdala can result in abnormal emotional responses and over-stimulation causes excessive reactions.

 

Hippocampus – (highlighted in orange!)

This sends information to the Amygdala and is one of the memory processing centres of the brain. It interacts with the Amygdala when a person has memories with emotional ties. According to The Canadian Institutes of Health Research the connection between the Hippocampus and Amygdala “may be the origin of strong emotions triggered by particular memories,” explaining emotional responses to traumatic memories.

 

Prefrontal Cortex (highlighted in gold!)

Located near the front of the head and is involved in decision making in response to emotions, basically, thinking about thinking! According to The Canadian Institutes of Health Research the Prefrontal Cortex regulates anxiety and controls what decision a person makes when faced with an emotional reaction. That is because one’s level of anxiety will affect the decisions one makes, you need a clear head to think!

 

Hypothalamus – (highlighted in gold!)

This feeds information into the Amygdala (soo tiny with such a big job!), like the Hippocampus . Shippensburg University states that the Hypothalamus acts as a regulator of emotion, controlling levels of sexual desire, pleasure, aggression and anger. Essentially the Hypothalamus is your appetite regulator!

 

Cingulate Gyrus – (highlighted in red!)

This acts as a pathway between the Thalamus and the Hippocampus and plays a role in remembering emotionally charged events. Shippensburg University (again lol) notes that the Cingulate Gyrus focuses our attention on the event, alerting the rest of the brain that it is emotionally significant.

 

Ventral Tegmental Area (the little balls and arrows)

Just to clarify the picture, this is the dopamine pathways, it’s a circuit in your brain that deals with reward and punishment. The arrows and balls just show where things flows to and from where.

This area is also involved in emotions and love but particularly in how a person perceives pleasure. Dopamine pathways are located in the Ventral Tegmental Area. Let’s just discuss Dopamine a bit more. Dopamine is a neurotransmitter involved in mood and increased levels elevate the person’s level of pleasure. It also helps you to move but what is important in this article is feelings. Dopamine also helps with reinforcement — motivating us to do something again and again. Dopamine is what prompts a lab animal to repeatedly press a lever to get tasty pellets of food. And it’s part of why humans seek out another slice of pizza! Reward and reinforcement help us learn where to find important things such as food or water, so that we can go back for more. Dopamine even affects moods. Things that are rewarding tend to make us feel pretty good. Lowering dopamine can make animals lose pleasure in activities like eating and drinking. This joyless state is called anhedonia (AN-heh-DOE-nee-uh). Dopamine also helps us focus on things. Anything that’s rewarding, after all, is usually well worth our attention. Dopamine has a more sinister side. Drugs such as cocaine, nicotine and heroin cause huge boosts in dopamine. The “high” people feel when they use drugs comes partly from that dopamine spike. This then prompts people to seek out those drugs again and again — even though they are harmful. Indeed, the brain “reward” associated with that high can lead to drug abuse and eventually to addiction.

Now this is all very interesting how chemicals and electricity regulate and control our emotions. However, what I would like to know is how things go from electricity and chemicals to a feeling? These things also don’t explain why people react differently to the same scenarios when we all have the same kit in our brains? These unanswerable questions are what I think gives evidence for not only more than 3 dimensions but also the human spirit. We are clearly more than atoms because we all have the same kit but respond differently to the same scenarios, you cannot say it’s always upbringing because some people are brought up very well and end up as serial killers and some people are abused as children but end up working for the UN or an NGO.

 

What are you saying Catherine?

Ultimately, what I am saying is that although the Limbic System is responsible for regulating emotions and helping us to feel these emotions and remember to associate them with various thing to help us to function effectively, it does not explain Personality. It only explains personality disorders which occur when things go wrong in the brain. Personality cannot be pinned down to any part of the brain, we can see evidence of it in the Limbic System but we cannot see it touching or interacting with the brain, personality is the essence of a human being and it’s ethereal (follow this link for definition), not corporeal (follow this link for definition) like our physical brains.

I grew up in the same house with my brother with the same parents and had the same punishments and rewards but we are two different people. He likes crowds, I like solitude, he likes noise, I like the quiet, he likes having lots of friends, I like a few close friends. Certain scenarios irritate him intensely, whereas the same scenarios don’t even register as a thing with me. On the flip side some things that agitate me intensely wash off his back like water off a ducks back lol. Why is that when we have lived similar lives?

The Limbic System and the other things in our brains also explain addiction, why we get sad and our fight and flight response but they do not explain the billions of variations and levels of addicts, sadness and flightiness. These things also do not explain why some people are in love with one person but not another even though they may look similar?

It is personality that makes me think that humans have spirits, I believe that what we call personality, is in fact Spirit.

Our bodies, to me, are like the following metaphor: our bodies are just like space suits that an astronaut uses to walk in and interact with the vacuum of space and the person inside is their spirit. The space suit looks one way on the outside but the person on the inside can be looking and feeling something totally different. In a similar way, our bodies are like casings or suits that allow our intangible spirits to interact with the tangible physical realm of the universe that we live in. Sometimes people look one way on their physical face but inside, if we could see their spirits, their spirits are angry or lustful or sad. It is the fact that human responses are not uniform, like Vulcan’s lol, sometimes our responses are irrational! This is what suggests to me that there is something else interacting with our brains that has not been identifiable yet that causes this. I think this is Spirit. I think this along the same lines as to why scientists think that dark matter exists, they can see atoms responding to/interacting with something that they cannot identify or touch and that thing they cannot identify easily they have called dark matter. Likewise, I can see that our physical bodies are interacting with something that cannot be easily identified or measured but it is clearly there, I have as others before me, labelled this thing as Spirit and if that is true it proves that Jesus (who is God) is also true because God (who chooses to identify as God the Father “Yahweh”, God the Son who we know as Jesus and God the Holy Spirit) is Spirit who created us like himself as it says in Genesis:

“[26] Then God said, “Let us make human beings in our image, to be like us. They will reign over the fish in the sea, the birds in the sky, the livestock, all the wild animals on the earth, and the small animals that scurry along the ground.” [27] So God created human beings in his own image. In the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.” (Genesis 1:26-27 NLT)

So if we do have Spirit, the part of us that is like God, then we indeed have a God too!

Catherine x

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HANDS UP IF YOU'RE STILL AT #CHURCH???!!?? #christian #jesus

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Bibliography

Brookshire, B. Explainer: What is dopamine? Science News For Students Web site, at: <https://www.sciencenewsforstudents.org/article/explainer-what-dopamine&gt; 1 November 2018

Stannard, L. What Parts of the Human Brain Correspond to Emotion or Love? Livestrong Web site, at: <https://www.livestrong.com/article/77419-parts-human-brain-correspond-emotion/&gt; 1 November 2018

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Some lighthearted reasons why #men are like #dogs, feel free to #paw over this lol | #pets #animals #men #fun #lol

Hello,

I’ve been meditating on the similarities between men and dogs. Below are my musings: (FYI, the man and dog in the picture above are not mine lol)

Here’s why men are like dogs:

  • They have faces and hands…
  • They’re cute
  • They like to snuggle up on the sofa with you
  • They make excellent friends
  • To keep them fit you give them appropriate feed and take them for regular walks
  • They love meal times
  • They’re hairy
  • They love back rubs
  • If you let them, they’ll lick your face
  • They don’t like going to the doctor
  • They’re territorial over their females
  • They have whiskers (moustache)
  • Sometimes you have to clean up their sick
  • Sometimes they wee on your (bathroom) floor…
  • The whole world is their toilet 🙂
  • You have to house train them
  • Stronger than they look
  • They lick themselves clean – I have seen this…
  • They like to play with toys even when they are adults
  • Pathological fear of a rolled up newspaper
  • They’re affectionate!
  • They come in all different shapes and sizes
  • When they’re too frisky you get them done (haha!)
  • They like attention
  • Happy to see you in the morning
  • Some are more docile than others
  • You adopt them from their mothers (lol)
  • They have no clue what women are angry about
  • Sloppy wet kisses!!!
  • They occasionally bark at you
  • You can dress them up in cute outfits
  • They enjoy physical contact with their favourite humans
  • It’s culturally acceptable for them to be topless in public
  • Weird fascination with butts
  • They aren’t expected to shave their legs
  • They enjoy taking a nap
  • Fancy themselves as pack leader

That’s all I can think of for now!

Catherine x

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This is how I know when #winter is here! #pets #dogs #fireplace

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What is your problem?

Hello Ladies and Gentlemen,

So today is going to be a bit of an odd post but I hope it helps someone.

What in your life has become a “problem”? And by problem you know what I mean, I mean this thing has become a major distraction, you genuinely can’t carry on like this, it’s totally un-liveable, unworkable, unmanageable, it’s beginning to effect your quality of life, relationships and just needs to stop?

I’ll share with you my thing. Well, can you believe it but I really feel like God has been talking to me about me over watching cute animal videos on YouTube lol. It wasn’t until God pointed it out to me that I realised that it was a problem… I once spent an hour on YouTube watching cute videos of puppies and kittens and laughing (I’m not joking lol).

Now there isn’t anything wrong with cute animal video’s on YouTube but it was the amount of time I was wasting which was unhelpful and unhealthy lol. I just like small furry things… Anyway so I went cold turkey from cute videos and decided if I’m going on YouTube its going to be for something else, just you know, for variety? I found some other channels I like to watch, some comedy ones just to broaden my horizons! Also, I’ve started to watch things I need to watch for my job as Pastor/Director of Music at my churh (follow this link to find out more about that)/my PhD (and follow this link to find out about that) like this video from Don Moen (then follow this link or play it in the embedded player below):

Why am I telling you this? I thought it might help someone identify things in their life that have become a problem and need to stop and to let you realise it doesn’t have to be something like porn to trap you it could be something small like cute furry animal videos lol. Go through your life and think, “what am I honestly spending too much time doing?”, be honest and change. When we waste our time we are wasting God’s time. That’s all.

Here’s some calming music:

 

Love Catherine x

Womanhood, love and pain

I accidentally posted this unfinished and early before, my little finger brushed the publish button, touch-phone screens are really sensitive these days lol!

Good evening,

I’ve been meditating on womanhood, pain and love.

This morning my period started and it was excruciating as usual. I was literally sitting there writhing in pain for hours. Thankfully I work from home.

Whilst I was writing in pain I was thinking, this is the price I have to pay in order to have children because as we all know from school, a menstruating woman is a fertile woman.

Basically menstruation in a nutshell is the beginning of a cycle where a woman’s ovaries produce an egg, the womb lining gets thicker in preparation to host a baby and the egg waits to be fertilized by sperm. If the egg is not fertilized then the woman’s body says “ok better luck next time let’s get rid of all this extra stuff we don’t need it this time”, then her body dumps the egg and the extra lining of the uterus. The menstruation is the sign that at one point that month your ovaries produced an egg. If your ovaries aren’t working and don’t produce any eggs you don’t have periods. Which is why menstruation is a sign of fertility. The NHS has an informative page on periods.

Anyway, so I was thinking, we women ensure pain every month so we can have the gift of children, that’s the only reason why I don’t complain. I bear the pain for the love of being a mother one day.

Then I thought physical pain and love are inextricably linked in womanhood. So periods are painful but you keep them because you love children.

Childbirth is excruciating (so I’m told lol) but it one of the most loving moments between a mother and her child she endures it so her child can be delivered and live. Labor is an act of love.

Sex, this can be painful for some women because they have problems like Vaginismus, again, the NHS has a handy page on this, in a nutshell that’s when a woman’s pelvic muscles spasm whenever she tries to put anything in her vagina e.g. a tampon, this literally shuts the vagina, so nothing can get in.

Or another thing is that perhaps it’s her first time having sex and she doesn’t know what she’s doing and he doesn’t know what he’s doing, especially if they are Christians and waited till their wedding night to have sex. This is something that keeps me up at night lol I feel really worried about this even whilst writing this I’ve developed a headache lol. Me and my single self is totally in control of what goes in my nether regions, apart from when I get the annual smear test, again the NHS are helpful with this one.

I would love to be married but I am not looking forward to an over enthusiastic, heavy (because I only weigh 7.5st or 102 pounds lol), aroused man trying to navigate my body for the first time. I feel like it’s going to hurt lol. However! We can work on it, I’m told sex gets better with time. Also, a decent man will listen to you when you say, “please don’t do that at that angle” lol. So I’m willing to work with him to educate/help him to not hurt me and still have a fulfilling sex life. But you see obviously you have to first experience the pain before you realise you shouldn’t do something. Therein lies the risk you take in having an intimate relationship with someone. You might get hurt, a good man won’t mean it, it’s just he doesn’t know what he’s doing, communicate with him, if he’s a good person he wont want to hurt you. However, you have to be willing to risk pain so you can grow together in physical and emotional closeness.

And that’s life as a woman but I know Jesus will help me through it all!

 

Love Catherine