Saturday, November 29, 2008


Formats available: Quicktime (.mov)

Continuing my recent exploration of emotional patterns, this short video focuses on facial expressions and hand gestures.

It doesn't represent how I'm currently feeling: I'm just experimenting with ways to illustrate questions that are on my mind.

I find that when I give concentrated attention to a subject, relevant items quickly seem to appear from anywhere, as if thoughts are magnets attracting similar particles.

In the blogosphere this happens all the time in a kind of group telepathy: you're working on or thinking about a particular topic; you take a break and go surfing and - lo and behold - you come across several blogs or websites which are discussing the very same theme, asking the very same questions. Often, in such a chain of synchronicity, I also discover that an intuition I've had about something turns out to be confirmed by experts, even though I had no prior information on that particular subject. One of the many fields I know very little about but am interested in is genetics, and I had a big AHA! moment last week when I came across a book: The Genie in Your Genes, by Dawson Church. That our genetic structure can be altered by our thoughts and feelings is something that many people, including me, instinctively believe but I for one didn't realise that current scientific research confirms this is literally true. I get very excited and start underlining sentences in red ballpoint when I read words like these (all quoted from the above book):

Our emotions and behavior shape our brains as they stimulate the formation of neural pathways that either reinforce old patterns or initiate new ones......when we think an increased flow of thoughts on a topic, or practice an increased quantity of an action, the number of neurons our bodies require to route the information increases.

What you are thinking, feeling and believing is changing the genetic expression and chemical composition of your body on a moment-by-moment basis.

Experience-dependent genes are genes that are activated by learning and novelty.....The experiences we are having each moment are actually changing the structure of our brains.....our brains keep adding new neural links throughout our lives, as long as they are stimulated to do so. This process is called neurogenesis. Learning experiences and other highly attentive states of awareness switch on the expression of genes that stimulate the formation of new neurons.

There are several ways of profiling genes, and one way they may be catalogued is to look at the speed at which they reach peak expression when stimulated by an environmental influence....Some genes are activated quickly; others more slowly.....Certain classes of late activated genes, once expressed, may remain "on" for your entire liftetime.

One of the newest tools that has enabled researchers to conduct experiments that show particular genes being triggered is the DNA microarray. Such gene chips assemble thousands of different strands of DNA onto a single wafer. When exposed to a sample they can then demonstrate which of the strands have been affected by the sample.

The diagram below is from the same book. Needless to say, I instantly saw its resemblance to sound-wave patterns, such as my voice patterns in the previous video clip . I don't (yet) know why there should be a similarity but hey, it's another area to explore.


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