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Why you can 'hear' words inside your head



Why you can 'hear' words inside your head
When we have conscious thoughts, we can often hear a voice inside our heads – now new research is revealing why.


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How humans communicate with each other

How humans communicate with each other

Humans communicate with sound. It is what permits one brain to talk to another - through words.

However humans can also communicate through a wide variety of modality such as:

  • face and voice signals
  • speech
  • braille
  • facial and body language; and
  • vocal tones




The existence of language

The existence of language mainly revolves around the evolution of oral and written communication by humans.

Linguists understand that language is a composition of words and rules of compositions.



Physical spaces where language occurs

  • Internal - it consists of electrical waves that are the channels for neuronal communication processes.
  • External - it consists of mechanical, acoustic waves of compressed rarefied molecules of air - i.e. sound.



Sound emission decoding

Physical signal is emitted when one brain talks to another. There is not a single signal that gets lost between exchanges.

The interesting factor in recent studies is that the electrical waves of the internal physical spaces maintain the architecture of their corresponding sound waves in the non-auditory places of the brain that is responsible for speech formulation.



A surprising discovery in the sound emission decoding experiment

The experiment for the not-so-novel study of sound emission decoding involved sixteen patients to read linguistic expressions aloud.

The most remarkable information taken during the experiment was that when the patients read the linguistic expressions without emitting a single noise, the signal that entered the brain was not a sound wave but instead a light signal which conserved the architecture as that of a mechanical sound wave corresponding to words that had actually been uttered.



The possibility of decoding the root of human language

The two known codes – sound waves and electric waves brought about by sound – could be taken advantage of to explore the third one – the electric code generated in the absence of sound – wherein could eventually guide us to a more fruitful understanding of the human languages’ core.




About Consciousness

About Consciousness

Consciousness is everything you experience - taste, pain, love, feeling. Where these experiences come from is a mystery.

Many modern analytic philosophers of mind either d...

Searching For Physical Footprints

What is it about brain matter that gives rise to consciousness? In particular, the neuronal correlates of consciousness (NCC) - the minimal neuronal mechanisms jointly sufficient for any conscious experience.

Consider this question: What must happen in your brain for you to experience a toothache?

Neuronal Correlates of Consciousness (NCC)

The whole brain can be considered an NCC because it generates experience continually.

  • When parts of the cerebellum, the "little brain" underneath the back of the brain, are lost to a stroke or otherwise, patients may lose the ability to play the piano, for example.  But they never lose any aspect of their consciousness. This is because the cerebellum is almost wholly a feed-forward circuit. There are no complex feedback loops.
  • The spinal cord and the cerebellum are not enough to create consciousness. Available evidence suggests neocortical tissue in generating feelings.
  • The next stages of processing are the broad set of cortical regions, collectively known as the posterior hot zone, that gives rise to conscious perception. In clinical sources of causal evidence, stimulating the posterior hot zone can trigger a diversity of distinct sensations and feelings.
  • It appears that almost all conscious experiences have their origin in the posterior cortex. But it does not explain the crucial difference between the posterior regions and much of the prefrontal cortex, which does not directly contribute to subjective content.

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Mind Replay

Mind Replay

While we sleep, our brain is on to housekeeping. It is weeding through the experiences of the day and identifying stuff that needs to be put into long-term storage.

A new study which involv...

The Mind At Work

  • During the day, all our senses are busy collecting information, which includes sights, smells and sounds.
  • When we sleep, the new memory traces are consolidated and ‘de-fragmented’ into a permanent form of long-term storage, combining the recent experience with existing semantic memory networks.
  • This also proves that when we sleep after learning something, we tend to remember it better as it gets processed and digested inside our minds.

The olfactory sense at work

The olfactory sense at work

Our sense of smell works in wondrous ways since the chemical composition of our surrounding change instantly and constantly. Our noses pick up volatile airborne compounds that interact with...

Facts about our olfactory sense

  • It is different from other sensory cortices in a way that it has a multidimensional stimulus.
  • Some things can smell different not just between different people but also for the same person.
  • Can measure an array of an uncertain variety of chemicals that can trace changes that detects pleasure, pain, or danger.
  • It does not require a map mirroring because its chemical stimulus is constantly changing. It relies on the brain to recognize the pattern or memory associated with the smell.

Contributors to the study of the olfactory sense

  • Santiago Ramón y Cajal: A founding father of neuroscience, he drew attention to the sense of smell as an exemplary model to learn how the brain makes sense of the world. He also believed that understanding smell would grant us better insight into other sensory systems
  • Linda Buck & Richard Axel: They discovered the olfactory receptors which happened to be the most structurally diverse and sizable member of the largest multi-gene family of protein receptors. They received the 2004 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine.