Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Loops in the brain and free will

Guru Cads recommended a podcast to listen to (radiolab.org). Being excited to try out new podcasts, I uploaded some episodes from Itunes so I can have something new to listen to aside from Becky Nights and Chico/Delamar Podcasts. The first episode that I chanced upon was entitled "Loops".

In this episode, there was a mother and daughter who talked about the mother's recent episode with transient global amnesia. It's lost of short term memory. Hearing the conversation, you will remember a scene from 50 first dates wherein the patient will repeat the same words and questions in span of seconds.

Sample conversation:

Mother: What day is today?
Daughter: August 24, 2010
Mother: My birthday just passed?
Daughter: Yes, but don't worry, you'll remember.
Then the mother will laugh.. and then after 60 seconds.. the mother will say the same thing and have the same reaction. It's as if the rewind button was pressed.

This has an impact on me because I observed that I have a tendency to do random things in the same way. For example, when trying to name code scripts and files or tables in the database, I always use the same name (i.e. aaa1.txt, and so on). You might say that this is coincidental but come to think of it what are the chances of using the same name for a random thing? I am not OC so I don't have any pattern, I just use what comes to mind.

One of the reasons given by the doctor was that there is a program in our brain that fires when this things happen. For example if path2 was blocked, it will try to switch to path3, trying to get to path4 thus the loop.

So, if our brain is hardwired with software and program, does this mean, we don't really have free will and there is a big chance that destiny was already predetermined? I know this example might be simplistic but it's something to think about ;)

But I believe that we somehow choose our program and what we're living is something we engineered before we started our existence.

Thoughts?

Amen? AMEN!