The Spiritual Brain

August 13, 2012 | By | Reply More

David Comings, Contributing Writer
Waking Times 

Spirituality is one of the most uplifting feelings that man can experience. While usually defined in terms of religion in a broader sense it is related to sensations of being in the presence of something greater than one’s self. This can occur in a church, on a walk in the woods, in a family gathering, or in a tight knit group of friends and relatives. The latter situation may be how spirituality came to assist in the evolution of humans. In times of great stress or danger the cohesiveness and protectiveness of small groups is likely to have had great survival value.

Is there a specific part of the brain for spirituality? While many parts of the brain may be involved, the studies of the famous neurosurgeon Wilder Penfield in the 1930s strongly implicated the temporal lobes. These are the part of the brain behind the ear and thus it is not surprising that the processing of hearing is one of the functions of the temporal lobe. Two other important parts include the hippocampus, essential for memory, and the amygdala, important for the memory of intense feelings.

Wilder Penfield’s brain mapping studies clearly placed the temporal lobes front and center, as the site for many complex spiritual experiences, including the re-playing of past experiences, thought intrusions, out-of-body sensations, trances or fugue states, feelings of being in the presence of others, of hearing angelic voices, of intense meaningfulness, of being connected to some force greater than themselves, and of talking to God.

In addition to stimulation by electrodes, the temporal lobes can also be activated by seizure activity in the form of temporal lobe epilepsy (TLE). Religious conversions have been reported in individuals with TLE of both the right and left temporal lobes. In addition a temporal lobe syndrome has been described consisting of excessive religiosity, hyposexuality, lack of humor, increased concern with philosophical, moral and religious issues, and compulsive writing on religious or philosophical themes. Temporal lobe epilepsy and its spiritual manifestations may have played a major role in the religious conversions of many historical figures and in the origin of several religions.

Individuals with near-death experiences (NDEs) have many features with a strong spiritual content including a feeling of great peace, depersonalization or out of body sensations, changes in visual perception interpreted as passing down a dark tunnel and coming out into a bright light, a review of one’s life, and a feeling of seeing God and being in heaven. NDEs exert their effect on the temporal lobes. As much as some would like to use NDEs as proof that God, heaven, and a life-after-death exists, NDEs are due to severe lack of oxygen to the brain.

Psychedelic drugs often produce a sensation of “contact,” of being in the presence of and interacting with a non-human being. Sophisticated test subjects who knew these feelings were drug-induced nevertheless insisted the contact had really happened. The temporal lobes emotional tape recorder sometimes cannot distinguish between externally generated real events and internally generated non-real events. This provides a system in which the rational brain and the spiritual brain are not necessarily in conflict. It is simply necessary for the rational brain to understand that one of the characteristics of the spiritual brain is to strongly believe in something, have faith in something, even when the rational brain says it is unreasonable or that it did not and could not have happened. The rational brain needs to give the spiritual brain “its space,” to have faith without being derogatory and critical.

If you have ever had any doubts about your faith or religion but lacked the scientific background to answer your questions, David Coming’s book, Did Man Create God is the book for you. It will strengthen your spiritual brain, stimulate your thinking brain. For more information, please visit:http://www.DidManCreateGod.com.

This article is offered under Creative Commons license. It’s okay to republish it anywhere as long as attribution bio is included and all links remain intact.

~~ Help Waking Times to raise the vibration by sharing this article with the buttons below…

Tags: , , , , ,

Category: All Original Articles, Contributors, Culture, Evolution, History, Ideas, Meta-physics, Mind, Religion, Science, Self, Spirituality, Time & Space

Leave a Reply

Must Watch Videos

This Discovery Makes Bee Die-Off Problem That Much Worse

This Discovery Makes Bee Die-Off Problem That Much Worse













Heather Callaghan, Contributor
Waking Times

Many arrows point to the bee decline. A Harvard professorrecently warned that Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD) is only the beginning for us. The ripple effect from new classes of pesticides is just getting started.

But there’s more…

The problems they face can be compared … More

August 28, 2014 | By | 3 Replies More
People are Proving That ALS, Lou Gehrig’s Disease is Reversible  – No Need to Waste Ice Water

People are Proving That ALS, Lou Gehrig’s Disease is Reversible – No Need to Waste Ice Water













Heather Callaghan, Contributor
Waking Times

I mentioned the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge in a recent article highlighting the social guiding that came with all the “disease awareness” we’ve been involuntarily immersed in via the media in the last few weeks. ALS meaning Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), often referred to as … More

August 26, 2014 | By | 4 Replies More
Back-to-School Vaccines: Know the Risks and Failures

Back-to-School Vaccines: Know the Risks and Failures













Barbara Loe Fisher, Mercola
Waking Times

As summer comes to an end, the drumbeat promoting back-to-school vaccinations grows louder and louder in America. Unlike children in Canada and the European Union,12 our children must get dozens of doses of vaccines or they can’t get a public school … More

August 26, 2014 | By | 2 Replies More
New Anti Police State App Helps You “See Something, Say Something” in Real-Time

New Anti Police State App Helps You “See Something, Say Something” in Real-Time













Waking Times

Recent studies have shown that police are held almost completely unaccountable by the current systems of governmental oversight. Perhaps this is the reason why you are 9 times more likely to be killed by a law enforcement officer than a terrorist. Rather than wait for bloated bureaucracy … More

August 25, 2014 | By | 1 Reply More
Vitamin D for Depression, Dementia, and Diabetes

Vitamin D for Depression, Dementia, and Diabetes













Dr. Mercola
Waking Times

Vitamin D research has repeatedly shown that vitamin D can improve a number of brain disorders, including depression and dementia—the most devastating form of which is Alzheimer’s disease.

Vitamin D receptors appear in a wide variety of brain tissue early in the fetal development, and activated … More

August 21, 2014 | By | 1 Reply More

Activism Works

Food as Medicine: How One Hospital Is Using Organic Produce to Help Heal Patients

Food as Medicine: How One Hospital Is Using Organic Produce to Help Heal Patients













Coach Mark Smallwood, EcoWatch
Waking Times

In 431 B.C. Hippocrates said, “Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food”

More than 2500 years later, we are inundated with advertisements boasting the latest, greatest cure-all super drug. From a young age, we learn that it doesn’t matter how or … More

August 23, 2014 | By | 3 Replies More
As Keystone XL Dominoes Fall, Time to Arrest Tar Sands Industry

As Keystone XL Dominoes Fall, Time to Arrest Tar Sands Industry













, EcoWatch
Waking Times

We’ve got this.

Thanks to the courageous and indefatigable efforts of pipeline fighters everywhere, the tide has finally turned on Keystone XL. As it becomes increasingly clear that Keystone XL’s northern leg is not going through, it is time to set our sights … More

August 4, 2014 | By | 2 Replies More
Seizing Control of Our Destinies

Seizing Control of Our Destinies













Julian Rose, Contributor
Waking Times

In 1381, at a time of great repression for the British agricultural work force, an extraordinary people’s revolutionary named Wat Tyler sprang to his feet and announced, “England should be a nation of self governing communities,” to which he added, “ No lord shall exercise … More

July 28, 2014 | By | 5 Replies More
Triumph For Citizens in Florida As Hughes Oil Company Drops Fracking Project

Triumph For Citizens in Florida As Hughes Oil Company Drops Fracking Project













Julie Dermansky, DeSmogBlog
Waking Times

On Friday morning, Dan A. Hughes Oil Company and the Collier Resources Company agreed to terminate their lease agreement, with the exception of the Collier Hogan 20-3H well, next to the Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary in Naples, Florida.

Hughes Oil dropped its plans to drill … More

July 14, 2014 | By | 1 Reply More
A Forgotten Community in New Orleans: Life on a Superfund Site

A Forgotten Community in New Orleans: Life on a Superfund Site













Julie Dermansky, DeSmogBlog
Waking Times

Shannon Rainey lives in a house that was built on top of a Superfund site in the Upper Ninth Ward of New Orleans.

“I bought my house when I was 25, and thirty years later, I still can’t get out,” she told DeSmogBlog.

Rainey’s … More

June 23, 2014 | By | 2 Replies More