i have recently begun reading a book about the physiology of spirituality. the book is fascinating.
it turns out that the right temporal lobe is the part of our brain which controls spiritual feelings. if a person prays or is having a spiritual phenomenon that is the part of the brain which becomes active. conversely, if this part of the brain is activated one will have a spiritual experience. it can be as mild as a pleasant feeling or as remarkable as leaving one's body, seeing seeing spiritual beings, conversing with god, or some sort of higher being, and seeing people who have died.
this could be a blow to spiritual phenomenon. making it appear it is merely an interesting side effect of our physical make-up, however, i think this need not necessarily be the case.
if spiritual phenomenon is true, it makes sense a person may need to have a part of their brain which is able to process the information, and now we have found it.
perhaps when this part of the brain is activated it allows a person to experience genuine parts of reality that are other wise hidden from our view.
it is now known there are aspects of reality we are not able to experience with our sense, such as electromagnetic waves outside of the visible spectrum, sounds that are of a pitch too high or too low for us to comprehend. and things much more exotic, like dark matter.
so it doesn't seem like much of a stretch to assume there is much that could be around us our sense cannot detect and has yet to be detected by machines.
perhaps when certain parts of our brain are activated it allows our senses to experience these things otherwise unavailable to us.
if this is so, it also has implication for certain drugs and mental illness.
those who have experienced hallucinogenic drugs (which i LOVE and think are so AWESOME!) knows that profound, even life changing spiritual experiences can happen. amazing things are felt and seen. could it be possible that these are actual elements of reality that the drugs are opening up the mind to experience? shamans and native people who consider certain drugs sacred would probably think so.
the same could be said of certain mental illness. a person's chemicals become unbalanced and it allows them to experience parts of reality in ways they do not normally. but often unpleasantly, uncontrolled.
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