Neuroplasticity

They (series of unexpected discoveries) showed that the brain changed its very structure with each different activity it performed, perfecting its circuits so it was better suited to the task at hand. If certain “parts” failed, then other parts could sometimes take over. The machine metaphor, of the brain as an organ with specialized parts, could not fully account for the changes the scientists were seeing. They began to call this fundamental brain property “neuroplasticity.”

The Brain that Changes Itself–by Norman Doidge, M.D.

This book was recently purchased for my by the renowned ex-pastor of New Life ChurchTed Haggard. Seven years post incident, the once NAE President now pastors a new church named “St James” in the very city he was expedited from. It is in this church my family and I have found asylum from the dogmatic doldrums of religion. Sunday after Sunday we are confronted with graceful authenticity and bewildered by authentic grace.

Sitting across an oak desk from each other, Ted and I divulge our hearts with taboos erased. An unrestrained and unfiltered torrent of the heart is its true elixir. Ted asked me questions no pastor dare inquire–a true breath of fresh air.

After one such inhale exhale, Ted brought me over to the computer and purchased the two most popular books on brain malleability and its possible reprograming. It is in this book that new epiphanies and passions are awakened.

As I sit here in Starbucks, perusing these pages about blindness healed, strokes reversed and balance restored, I’m inspired. This is mindboggling! The brain is fathomless. It heals; it changes; it adapts; it’s in perpetual motion of adaption.

To date, the method of approach to the brain is viewing it as a mechanism, as a machine. Certain parts do certain things. If things break, they’re broken forever. Programs of a computer. This is NOT the case for the brain. It is malleable and organic, pushed and pulled by forces consciously and subconsiously. And this, my friends, has radical implications.

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