The Left vs. the Right Brain

Essay by havok786 July 2008

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Home to your mind and personality, your brain houses your cherished memories and future hopes. It orchestrates the symphony of consciousness that gives you purpose and passion, motion and emotion. In mammals, the brain is located in the head, protected by the skull and close to the primary sensory apparatus of vision, hearing, balance, sense of taste, and smell.

Early views on the function of the brain regarded it as little more than cranial stuffing. In Ancient Egypt, from the late Middle Kingdom onwards, in preparation for mummification, the brain was regularly removed, for it was the heart that was assumed to be the seat of intelligence.

The first thoughts on the field of psychology came from ancient philosophers, such as Aristotle. As thinkers became more in tune with biomedical research over time, as was the case with medieval psychologists, the concepts of experimental psychology and clinical psychology began emerging.

From that point, different branches of psychology emerged with different individuals creating new ideas, with modern psychologists such as Freud and Jung contributing to the field.

The theory of the structure and functions of the mind suggests that the two different sides of the brain control two different "modes" of thinking. A longitudinal fissure separates the human brain, essentially dividing it into two distinct hemispheres, connected by the corpus callosum. The left side of our body is "wired" to the right side of our brain, and vice versa. It operates much as an Ethernet cable or network connection between two incredibly fast and immensely powerful computer processors, each running a different programme from the same input.

The sides resemble each other and each hemisphere's structure is generally mirrored by the other side. For some reason, our right and left hemispheres control the 'opposite' side of our bodies, so the...