12 curiosities about the human mind
Several interesting facts about the functioning of the human mind.
Although research is advancing at great speed, especially in the field of neuroscience, and we know more and more about everything, it is a reality that the human mind remains a great unknown.
However, much knowledge has come to light on this subject. In this article you will find some curiosities about the human mindrelated to topics as diverse as: dreams, neurons, the brain, memories, happiness... Don't miss it!
Curiosities about the human mind
When we talk about the human mind, in reality a huge range of many other things intrinsic to it opens up: behavior, thought, wellbeing, relationships, dreams, habits, the brain... In other words, behind the concept of "the human mind" there are many interesting aspects that are hidden, behind the concept of "the human mind" there are many interesting aspects to be known, since the mind is to know, since the mind is a system as complex as it is marvelous.
Our mind allows us to adapt to the environment, survive, fight, think, relate, dream, build, solve problems... although it also has its "traps" and can play tricks on us, since it is something very powerful, which we can learn to master over time (or at least, a part of it).
Here you will find, then, some of the curiosities about the human mind, but there are many more.
1. Mirror neurons
The first of the curiosities about the human mind that we are going to talk about has to do with the brain. It has been discovered in the brains of people (and animals) some neurons, called "mirror neurons", which are activated when we perform an action that we observe another person performing. are activated when we perform an action that we observe another person also performing..
These neurons allow to explain, for example, that we can physically feel a damage (for example a blow) that is done to another person, if we are very emotionally connected with him/her.
It has been shown that the brain mechanisms that act in different types of addictions, such as addiction to video games, shopping, alcohol... are the same that act in drug addictions (e.g. heroin).
Among the structures that are activated, we find the brain reward circuit, called ventral tegmental area (VTA). (VTA). In this structure and in others, there is a great synthesis and transmission of dopamine, which makes the person feel excited before the consumption of his particular "drug".
3. We improve the monotonous stories
Another of the curiosities about the human mind is that people tend to improve the stories they tend to improve the stories that we consider boring..
This was evidenced in a series of investigations carried out by the Institute of Neuroscience and Psychology of the University of Glasgow, where it was proved that people who listened to monotonous or boring stories, tended to make them more attractive by rewriting or retelling them (their mind "reworked" them, making them more interesting).
4. The joy of contributing
Psychologists Elizabeth Dunn and Michael Norton, through their studies, demonstrated how spending money on others (especially on people we care about) can make us happier, produces a greater sense of satisfaction and fulfillment than if we were spending it on ourselves.. All of this is explained by these authors in their book Happy Money. The Science of Happier Spending.
5. The inheritance of phobias
The next of the curiosities about the human mind that we are going to comment has to do with phobias. It has been shown that genetics may be involved in their transmission, genetics may be involved in their transmission..
This happens especially with the phobia to blood/injections/wounded; that is to say, if our parents (or one of them) suffer it, it is probable that we also suffer it (it can also be that we "inherit" a genetic predisposition that, added to other factors, increases the probability of suffering it).
6. Dreams: the great mystery
Dreams are another of the great curiosities about the human mind. All people, to a greater or lesser extent, dream (and, it is believed, every night). (and it is believed that, every night). What happens is that not all of us remember our dreams when we wake up. Moreover, if we remember them when we wake up but we do not review them mentally or write them down, we are more likely to forget them.
On the other hand, it is known that dreams, generally, have a psychological meaning, which has to do with all that repressed, desired, censored, etc., material that we "veto", unconsciously, when we are awake.
Another curious fact about the human mind, according to a study published in the Journal of Neuroscience, is that, when we remember something, it is not that we remember that particular eventWe actually remember the last time we remember that event or moment.
8. The phantom limb
Many people who have lost a body part as a result of an amputation suffer from the so-called "phantom limb syndrome". This syndrome implies that the person feels that this part of the body still remains there; in additionIn addition, this sensation is linked to other sensations such as cold, pressure, heat, pain, etc., in that area or part of the body that is no longer really there.
Experts believe that this fact has to do with the fact that the spinal cord is still sending messages to the brain.
9. The mystery of consciousness
Consciousness remains an unsolved mystery, which fields such as neuroscience, psychology, psychiatry, philosophy, etc., have been trying to unravel for years.
What is the consciousness? How do we access it? Is it possible to really know it? Can it be investigated? Do people in coma have it? There are many questions in relation to it, and also the theories that have been put forward, but it is likely to remain a mystery.But it is likely to remain a mystery for many years to come. What is clear is that it will remain one of the great curiosities about the human mind.
10. The reproduction of neurons
Brain cells do not reproduce, or so it was believed until recently. However, research has provided data to the contrary, and at the moment, according to the studies, some of the brain cells that reproduce do not reproduce, some of the brain cells that do reproduce are neurons located in the hippocampus (a structure related to memory and memories).
11. Brain plasticity
The human brain is plastic, i.e. it has plasticity. Brain or neuronal plasticity (neuroplasticity) is the capacity of neurons in the brain to regenerate anatomically and functionally, forming new synaptic connectionsdepending on learning, needs and the demands of the environment.
This plasticity, however, decreases with age; in childhood it is the more plastic our brain is.
12. Critical periods
In relation to the previous point, we find another of the curiosities about the human mind, and that has to do with the periods in which the brain is more plastic and effective in consolidating certain learning processes..
That is to say, in childhood there are a series of "critical periods" where the child "must" learn a series of things (for example language), which if not done at that time, it becomes more difficult later on (because the brain loses this ability to adapt, restructure and regenerate itself).
- Chant, I. (2012). You Remember That Wrong: Brain Distorts Memories Every Time It Recalls Them.
- Dunn, E. & Norton, M. (2014). Happy Money. The Science of Happier Spending. Browse Related Books.
- Garcia, E. (2008). Neuropsychology and education. From mirror neurons to theory of mind. Journal of psychology and education, 1(3): 69-89.
- Gerrig, R.J. and Zimbardo, P.G.. (2005). Psychology and life. Pearson Educación de México.
- Hernández-Muela, S. Mulas, F. and Mattos, L. (2004). Functional neuronal plasticity. Rev Neurol.
(Updated at Mar 28 / 2023)