If you haven’t fully realized this yet, you should be aware that there are two of you.
There’s You you think of as you, the you that thinks conscious thoughts, makes conscious decisions, and the like.
Then there’s the second you, in Armchair Zen world referred to as You 2.
Perhaps a number of other psychometric or philosophic names are given to You 2. The alter ego, the Id, the sub-conscious, etc.
I’m no expert on that stuff, so we’ll just talk about You 2 as if you know what I mean.
Folks talk about how we only use six percent of our brain’s capacity, or something like that. All that brain tissue in there and we’re not really sure what it does. Real science has discovered some wonderful stuff with machines examining brain activity. Others have done volumes of work studying the subconscious, the “unused” sections of the brain, ways in which the brain functions, etc. You should read that stuff some time and see if it interests you.
Meanwhile, let’s look again at your amazing brain, and its ability to work just fine without (or in spite of) your conscious efforts! Actually, we’ll be looking at your brain working the way it’s supposed to, which is really amazing and uses (in my opinion) most of that space much of the time.
One of the most amazing things about our species is spoken language. Clearly, the ability to assemble a bunch of symbols like the ones you’re reading now, and having others, many others, be able to receive information from those symbols, is a great advantage. This allows us to teach one another without every lesson being one-on-one in real-time, the way other animals do. In fact, even the one-on-one teaching of other animals pales in comparison, as purely visual lessons can be misunderstood or missed entirely.
Some written languages, Chinese as an example, use a picture symbol for each word as opposed to words made up of letters. We think that it must be difficult to learn all those symbols and remember them, recall them as they’re needed.
Cut to the fun stuff! Okay, here’s a little exercise that will have your amazing brain amazing you in minutes! In past presentations, we’ve talked about your brain’s ability to take in information, seeing, hearing, feeling, and so forth, and retain those events for retrieval later.
(See Archives: Creativity & seeing Nov.2012, Seeing 2: the amazing brain Dec. 2012, You can predict the future! Dec.2012, You times two, Apr.2013)
Now we’re going to discover a cool way to “bait” your brain and make it retrieve stuff from that vast mass of gray matter in your head! This is really simple, so that’s why we had to get all the good descriptive dialogue and such out-of-the-way first. Here’s the drill:
I’m going to give you a trigger word, and you’re going to have about a half-dozen words on average come flying in to your conscious brain from the subconscious side!
How? Rhyming. Yes. I’ll give you the first word, but after that you can pick any word you want (except orange) and your brain will instantly provide you with rhyming words!
So, maybe you think this is infantile, a game played with second graders to improve their literacy. But if you stop and smell the amazing roses, you’ll find your brain (or You 2’s brain) is lightning fast with this. It really is amazing when you get on a roll! Okay: here’s your trigger word. Count how many rhyming words you come up with in about 30 seconds. Most folks, with most words, will almost-instantly produce about six rhyming words. That’s your instant-fast brain. There’s much more in your brain, but You (not You 2) need to “send” a request to get more. After your initial six words, start actively thinking and let your brain find other words that rhyme. that’s where it gets really fun, as you start to think of multi-syllable words, words in foreign languages, and homonyms that sound the same but are spelled differently. Ready? Here’s your first trigger word, think of rhyming words for:
You’re already amazed I bet!
I got the idea for this post from something even more amazing! I am an armchair poet and singer-songwriter. If you write or read poetry, or even the verses on greeting cards, you’ll know that this uses meter, a number of syllables that are the same length as other corresponding lines in the poem or song. Not all poems (or songs for that matter) follow a meter, but it’s the most common. Written music, another set of symbols that amazing brains can learn, read and instantly decipher, is set to a specific meter, in beats or bars if you’re familiar with the terms. You can try this, too, and be even more amazed at your amazing brain! Make up a rhyme. Let any words at all come into your head and just let it flow. Some of the lines will be somewhat nonsensical, but you’ll be amazed at how quickly your brain can come up with ideas that fit the meter and rhyme the end word. (Called end rhyming, not unnaturally)
I’m going to start a silly diddy. You can use the same line to start with. I’m going to let my brain write the next three lines and I’ll leave them in the post just the way they came out.
I went outside on a beautiful day.
Hoping to find someone to play
And run with me through fields of hay,
And send my cares off and away.
Okay, so my brain stopped me and made me backspace the last line, but I threw this up in about twenty seconds!
Try this! It will make you appreciate your brain’s speed and power! (It won’t make You 2 appreciate anything, as far as I know. typically You 2 thinks it knows everything already. More some other time on why You 2 brain thinks it is always right, when it argues with itself, and why these things are healthy as well as amazing!)
Be at peace,