I Think Therefore I Am...Not Essay examples

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I think therefore I am...not

“I think therefore I am” said René Descartes in his “Discourse on the Method” (Descartes 1637). A fairly self evident statement that says because I think I exist. By our very act of thinking we provide evidence of our existence. But Jill Bolte Taylor, in her video presentation on TED.com, adds to that idea with the notion that via purely right brain thought “I think therefore I am not”. Neuroanatomist Jill Bolte Taylor gives a detailed and sometimes moving description of the morning that she suffered a stroke in the left hemisphere of her brain. During the course of the talk she first explains to us that our left brain is a serial device, working through things logically, one step at a time. That the left
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Meanwhile our right brain is better at things like philosophy, symbols and images (Morris 2005-2007), it discerns the subtleties in language (Meyers 2009) and does its thinking in an abstract and random manner and looks at the bigger picture (Morris 2005-2007). Through the course of her stroke progression we see these left and right brain characteristics both deteriorate and manifest themselves. As the hemorrhage in the left hemisphere of her brain expands, more and more of its functions are severely impaired or cease to work at all. She finds it difficult to walk, she loses her ability to speak and to properly understand verbal language, no longer can she read her business card, and the right side of her body begins to become paralyzed. Meanwhile, her right brain, becoming less and less constrained by its left brain counterpart, engages in deep abstract thought. She becomes lost in the moment and becomes more and more aware of all the sights, sounds, and other sensory input that normally is filtered by the brain's selective attention, almost to the point where she is overwhelmed by all that she is experiencing (Taylor 2008). For her, the progress of time stops or becomes irrelevant. As her condition progresses her consciousness moves further away from the “I am” and almost completely enters the “I am not”, eventually succumbing completely and giving herself up, ready to move on to the next stage of her existence. Beyond just the

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