A direct link to the above video is at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XXwqokws42s
One of the ideas I discussed in my book is that ringing in the ears (tinnitus), doesn't actually come from the ears but from the brain. The image at the left, an artist's rendition of nerve cells in the brain according to its caption, comes from a BBC science news story published a few days ago which shows new medical studies confirming this idea to be what's really happening:
The name of the article is "Technique Can Pinpoint Tinnitus". Here's a few paragraphs:
Here's what I said in my book about tinnitus:
Tinnitus is a condition where sounds are heard in one or both ears when there is no external source.
While doctors had thought tinnitus was generated by ear problems, they now believe it is generated in the brain.
The team at Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit used a special scanner to map the locations in the brain. They hope it will allow more targeted therapies to be developed.
The scan is called magnetoencephalography (MEG) and it measures the very small magnetic fields generated by intracellular electrical currents in the neuron cells in the brain.
The team at the Henry Ford Hospital have already tried using chips which generate electrical noise directly in the brain in two patients to try to interfere with the tinnitus signals.
Here is a useful saying in discussions of life and consciousness: “that which ceases to change ceases to exist”. When the brain processes input from the auditory nerve, it tends to reject any continuous noises which do not change–like, for instance, the noise of the air molecules in the room banging into each other, or the sound of an air conditioner. In other words, for our consciousness, the noises (or smells, or continuous aches and pains, and so on) which cease to change, will cease to exist because the brain stops them from being considered for processing. When we listen back to a tape recording, we are surprised at how much background noise there is because we're hearing what’s really in the room, without the phase reversed noise cancellation the brain uses to remove those continuous noises. Now, when the internal mechanisms of the ear are damaged, usually through exposure to excessive sound levels, we end up with an imbalance, where the brain is correcting for frequencies that are no longer coming in. This manifests itself as tinnitus, or “ringing of the ears”. It turns out that the ringing we hear is not from the ears, but from the brain itself, as it attempts to cancel out particular frequencies that are no longer coming in from the auditory nerve.As I've said elsewhere, one of the criticisms of the Many Worlds Interpretation is that it's "too extravagant" to ask us to imagine that a new universe is created with each new action of chance or choice. Likewise, it may seem unreasonable to assume that the brain is processing data coming in from some of those other universes in ways that are not apparent to our conscious minds. Tinnitus is a great example of what happens when one of those complicated processes that are already occurring in the brain all the time goes slightly out of balance. How much more is happening "behind the curtain" that we have yet to discover? This idea has been explored elsewhere in my book, and in a number of other blog entries including Creativity and the Quantum Universe, Seeing Time, Feeling Colors, Tasting Light, Beer and Miracles, The Biocentric Universe Part 2 and You Have a Shape and a Trajectory.
This is an example of how the brain is processing a huge amount of data, while our conscious minds are completely unaware of the process. It is only when things are not functioning normally that we start to see evidence of what’s going on “behind the curtain”...
The idea that our brains are doing much more than we realize to create the reality we see around us is also the point of my song From the Corner of My Eye. Here's a video of my friend Ron Scott singing that song:
A direct link to the above video is at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MyP5jxFe5Po
Enjoy the journey!
PS - Just a reminder that we now have my book available as a 6-hour-long set of mp3s - an audio book of the revised and expanded third edition of the book. Interested? Go to tenthdimension.com/digital .
Next: Quantum Suicide