Caviar For The Brain

February 23, 2010 by  
Filed under Blog

A couple of days ago I went to see Shutter Island, the new Martin Scorsese film with Leonardo DiCaprio.

Without giving the plot away one of the main topics of the film is mental illness.  While I didn’t love the film it was good enough to make me think about our mind’s fragility.  It took me back to when my husband was sick with liver disease and could barely put a sentence together because all of the ammonia in his brain.  It took me back to when after his transplant the combination of steroids and the ammonia turned him into another mind who thought our reality was a fiction of a parallel world.  And it took me back to when exhausted from lack of sleep and the emotional drain of three months fighting to keep my husband alive, I doubted my own sense of reality and thought maybe he, through his illness, had found the truth about life.

Of course these are all extreme cases but it all points out to how fragile and susceptible our minds are.  Feed your mind confusion and sadness and your life will be confused and sad.  Feed your mind love and hope and your life will be filled with love and hope.

I’m not trying to be simplistic about life and feelings. Actually I think life is very complicated.

Many things happen to us that are beyond our control and hurt us deeply but a mind that tries to see and experience beauty more than despair, is a mind that will help navigate us from darkness to light when life becomes too hard.

Recently talking to a friend we came to the conclusion that our sense of survival is one of our strongest driving forces if not the strongest.  Some of us have seen and experienced situations that are so devastating that we wonder how we’ll be able to continue but somehow we do.  We do because first our survival instinct takes over than we do because our mind follows.

Cognitive science (study of how information is represented and transformed in the brain) affirms that the vast information and experiences that we store inside our brain are all interconnected and related with each other, some more strongly or loosely than others and that the well being of the organism is determined by the degree to which the organism feels in control of its environment or situation. Health varies with the level of control that is perceived.

So as the saying goes “Whether you think you can or whether you think you can’t, you’re right”.  Or: “Every man has in himself a continent of undiscovered character. Happy is he who acts as the Columbus to his own soul”.

But most importantly let us not feed our minds junk food.  Let’s feed them with the most exquisite delicacies and most likely the glass will most often be half full and not half empty.

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