NPR Fresh Air discussion on new book, "The Man Who Wasn't There"

Small Steps, modified 5 Years ago.

NPR Fresh Air discussion on new book, "The Man Who Wasn't There"

Posts: 248 Join Date: 2/12/14 Recent Posts
An interesting discussion with the author of the book, The Man Who Wasn't There: Investigations into the Strange New Science of the Self. Link to the episode's page with synopsis and stream/download.

At one point, the talk veers towards "ecstatic seizures" and their outcome, which is completely in line with common reports found in contemplative/spiritual work (link to an article on that subject).

Look forward to reading the book.
Derek Cameron, modified 5 Years ago.

RE: NPR Fresh Air discussion on new book, "The Man Who Wasn't There"

Posts: 326 Join Date: 7/21/10 Recent Posts
Interesting. I wonder if this is a start of no-self filtering into mainstream consciousness. If you count NPR listeners as mainstream, that is. ;)
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Psi, modified 5 Years ago.

RE: NPR Fresh Air discussion on new book, "The Man Who Wasn't There"

Posts: 1093 Join Date: 11/22/13 Recent Posts
Small Steps:
An interesting discussion with the author of the book, The Man Who Wasn't There: Investigations into the Strange New Science of the Self. Link to the episode's page with synopsis and stream/download.

At one point, the talk veers towards "ecstatic seizures" and their outcome, which is completely in line with common reports found in contemplative/spiritual work (link to an article on that subject).

Look forward to reading the book.
Excerpt from your link:

On how Alzheimer's disease affects the narrative selfAlzheimer's disease ... unfortunately literally erases a very important part of our sense of self, which is the narrative that we have in our heads about who we are. This narrative is something that the brain constructs and we're not even aware that it's actually a constructed thing. When we just think of ourselves, we have this expansive narrative inside us about who we are and what Alzheimer's unfortunately does is it puts a stop to the narrative forming. So because short-term memory formation is impaired, it becomes harder and harder for a person with Alzheimer's to start having new memories, and once you stop having or forming new memories, these memories don't get incorporated into your narrative. So, in some sense, your narrative stops forming. As the disease progresses it starts eating away at the existing narrative. It starts basically destroying a whole range of memories that go toward constituting the person that you are. ...In terms of talking about the self, what this is telling you is that the self is multilayered. There's a narrative component to it, and what Alzheimer's seems to be doing is destroying the narrative component to the point that the person really cannot recognize anyone. ... We really don't know what the situation is from the perspective of the person suffering from Alzheimer's, especially late stage Alzheimer's.

Maybe I am developing Psizheimer's....  Egads... Funny in a not so funny kind of way. This sounds very similar to what I am experiencing, except, that the automatic narrative mode can be replaced by a non-discursive thinking mode.  And memory function seems to be okay.  This is interesting, might see if the library has this book.

And my heart goes out to those with Alzheimer's, with compassion, especially knowing that I may one day join the ranks.  Time may be an illusion, yet it still seems to slip away.

Thanks for posting this Small Steps, it is nice to learn new things.

Psi

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