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The psalmist:"You are totally miraculously made!"


Memorization

I would like to argue that the three components of memorization are nature, nerves and nurture. Nature and nurture, or genes and circumstances, or personal aptitude and personal environment are often set in opposition. They influence each other in the course of time! The nerves in our physical systems function as 'go-betweens'. One could argue that the nerves form a sort of 'objective' and neutral role, wheres the make-up of the genes and the influence of the circumstances play a 'subjective' one.

This little schematic study is based on my description of the nature of learning, consisting of acquisition, internalization and personalization (which study in turn has been based on the heart of personality). As there, also in this survey there are nine cross sections with each their introverted and extraverted sides. One can discover a microcosm hiding behind every aspect of that schema. In the case of memorization there is question of a microcosm within a microcosm. One can also look at this as an in depth study of the third degree.

This study is subject matter of an ongoing debate among scientists and I in no way claim to have the final anwers. What I have done is to arrange some of the material in line with my understanding of the heart of the human personality, going from which I have made descriptions of what learning is for instance. There are many anthropological ways of looking at the human being. This overview is meant to give a (slight) impression rather than for professionality. In this particular case I may have bitten off more than I can chew...

As in all my schematic representations also this overview is meant to serve as a picture, as a painting that gives an impression, a bird's-eye-view as you will.


nature

nerves

nurture

character

electrical speed

environment

'disposition'

information and selection of it

nurture

synapses

autonomic nervous system

recognition

brain cells

semi-autonomic nervous system

repetition

nerves

biochemistry

left brain

response

proteins

right brain

reflex

nature

DNA

brain stem

intestines

genes

spinal nerves

microflora



The nature versus nurture dabate obviously has a larger context than only memorization. But also here this pair play their role. I argue that nerves systems belong together with this pair and that they act as 'go-betweens'.

ELABORATIONS

Nature

Nature lays the groundwork for our character. However circumstances play an important role in forming our personalities. Genes and circumstances influence each other.

Nurture

Nurture is taking care of the circumstances.

Information and Selection of it.

As Christians what do we fill our minds and hearts with? Is it in the pursuit of sinful self, or with the motivation to serve the Lord and our fellow men? There is so much information out there that overload happens quickly. We naturally, therefore, select what is to our liking and we hunt for it when it keeps satisfying us.

Recognition

Recognition is a very important aspect in memorizing anything. Recognizing something time and time again teaches one to observe differences.

Repetition

I argue that repetitiveness in memorization is the extraverted side of the same coin, of which recognition is the introverted side. Repetition has something active about it and recognition something passive. The latter receives, the former acts.

Response

A response is a voluntary movement or utterance.

Reflex

A reflex is an involuntary movement such as when one reacts to burning one's finger. Suckling is a primitive reflex, or instinct.

Intestines

In the New Testament the apostle Paul, literally translated, states that his intestines have been given rest. It would be an excellent study to explore the role of our gut (stomach, kidneys ((David said that his reins educate in the night)), liver) in emotion. Little has been discovered here.

Intestinal Microflora

Recent studies have called the microflora in our colon the third brain, after the intestines and the brain. It is thought that they play a role in influencing our grey cells, even in psychiatric diseases.

Autonomic Nervous System

The autonomic nervous system (ANS) is a division of the peripheral nervous system that influences the function of internal organs. The autonomic nervous system is a control system that acts largely unconsciously and regulates bodily functions such as the heart rate, digestion, respiratory rate, pupillary response, urination, and sexual arousal. This system is the primary mechanism in control of the fight-or-flight response and the freeze-and-dissociate response (source: wikipedia).

Semi-autonomic Nervous System

We can exercise control over things like breathing, swallowing, coughing and the like, but we cannot stop them. The same holds for things like urination. Most people cannot ultimately control their sexual urges either. Yet the Lord stated that there are people that have (emotionally) 'neutered' themselves. The apostle Paul had attained to this gift of abstinence. The Lord ends his comments on this subject with: Not all can fathom this, but to who it has been given.

Left Brain

It is argued in some studies that everybody uses both brain hemispheres throughout. Only right handed people, for instance, prefer the left brain. This is called lateralization. However, how then do we explain that body language belies our spoken words when we fib or prevaricate? The left and right brain as the center of the nerves-nerves cross section may not be such a bad idea, considering thet they are full of neurons (nerve cells).

Right Brain

When you wink your right eye, that's the left side of your brain at work. Because of this criss-cross wiring, damage to one side of the brain affects the opposite side of the body. In general, the left hemisphere is dominant in language: processing what you hear and handling most of the duties of speaking (source: www.lifescience.com). Wiring between the two brains is crossed in an intricate way making the two sides work together in an optimal way, for instance in binocular vision that enables us to see things in 3D images.

Brain Stem

I use the word brain stem to denote the cerebellum (seat of motor activity), pons and medulla. "The pons contains nuclei that relay signals from the forebrain to the cerebellum, along with nuclei that deal primarily with sleep, respiration, swallowing, bladder control, hearing, equilibrium, taste, eye movement, facial expressions, facial sensation, and posture. The medulla oblongata (or medulla) is located in the hindbrain, anterior to the cerebellum. The medulla oblongata is a cone-shaped neuronal mass responsible for multiple autonomic functions ranging from vomiting to involuntary functions such as sneezing. The medulla contains the cardiac, respiratory, vomiting and vasomotor centers and therefore deals with the autonomic (involuntary) functions of breathing, heart rate and blood pressure (sources: wikipedia)".

Spinal Nerves

A spinal nerve is a mixed nerve, which carries motor, sensory, and autonomic signals between the spinal cord and the body. In the human there are 31 pairs of spinal nerves, one on each side of the vertebral column (source: google).

Solomon said things like that we should trust in the Lord and not lean on our understanding. He also meant that if we are in the Way of the Lord that our health will be blessed (It will be moisture for your bones.) Scientists may shrug their shoulders at such Scriptures, but I think there is more to it. So the psalmist talks about paths in the sea and a Christian a few hundred years ago, because of this verse, started studying and discovered the various streams and currents in the ocean, thus facilitating shipping. There are many wonderful things in Holy Writ that are to be worked out yet.

Synapses

A synapse is a junction between two nerve cells, consisting of a minute gap across which impulses pass by diffusion of a neurotransmitter.

Brain Cells

Neurons (brain cells) often have extensive networks of dendrites, which receive synaptic connections. Neurons generate electrical signals that travel along their axons. When a pulse of electricity reaches a junction called a synapse, it causes a neurotransmitter chemical to be released, which binds to receptors on other cells and thereby alters their electrical activity (source: wikipedia).

Biochemistry

Biochemistry, sometimes called biological chemistry, is the study of chemical processes within and relating to living organisms. By controlling information flow through biochemical signaling and the flow of chemical energy through metabolism, biochemical processes give rise to the complexity of life (source: wikipeida).

Proteins

Genes make molecules called proteins among whom enzymes. Proteins are essential nutrients for the human body. They are one of the building blocks of body tissue, and can also serve as a fuel source (source: wikipedia).

DNA

Deoxyribonucleic acid, a self-replicating material which is present in nearly all living organisms as the main constituent of chromosomes. It is the carrier of genetic information (source: google).

Genes

A gene is (in technical use) a distinct sequence of nucleotides forming part of a chromosome, the order of which determines the order of monomers in a polypeptide or nucleic acid molecule which a cell (or virus) may synthesize.


There seems to be something like convection occurring in the ranks of the above schema. Like hotter and colder fluids or gases, the energy of activity goes back and forth between the aspects of this microcosm. Like energy levels they rise and fall. And also here equilibrium and rhythm are in order.

The overview below is an attempt to detect the links that go between the introverted and extraverted sides, as in our study of intra-aspectual links, viz. that go between the main aspects of our basic anthropological schema. This is important as these links are like the RAM and CPU between software and hardware, so to speak.

The transaspectual links are in red. They are called transaspectual as they are situated between more or less autonomous aspects (consisting, as said, of introverted and extraverted sides).


nature

nerves

nurture

nurture

synapses

autonomic nervous system

recognition

neurotransmitters

(para)sympathetic nervous system

memory strategies

brain cells

semi-autonomic nervous system

repetition

blood brain barrier

cortex

upbringing

nerves

biochemistry

left brain

response

amino acids

corpus callosum

impulse

proteins

right brain

reflex

mRNA

reticular formation

peripheral nervous system

nature

DNA

brain stem

intestines

chromosomes

bone marrow

enteric nervous system

genes

spinal nerves

microflora


NOMENCLATURE

Memory Strategies

An example of a memory strategy is a mnemonic. Memory strategies range from games, via (music) ambience to elaborate schemes such as the periodic table.

Upbringing

Upbringing is a vital process of nurturing. Circumstances cannot be fully controlled, but when one raises a child parenting is vital to streamlining impulses and responses and it is conducive to learning repetition of tasks and recognition of say language. Education and training at a later age can be seen as forms of rearing and preparing somebody for life.

Impulse

Impulses are for humans what instincts are for animals, only animal instincts are usually stable and given by the Creator. Responses are voluntary and reflexes are involuntary, but impulses (like spending spurs, fits of laughter) come and go and must be regulated. They are more or less semi-voluntary. If they are not kept in check they become morbid. I wonder whether yawning and hickups (as well as 'ticks' and tourets) might be classified here as well.

Peripheral Nervous System

This system comprises all nerve systems outside the brain and the spinal cord.

Enteric Nervous System

The enteric nervous system is a semi-independent part of the nervous system whose function is to control the gastrointestinal system (source: wikipedia). I rank it as a go-between of the intestines and the microflora as it seems to keep the two in equilibrium.

Parasympathetic and sympathetic nervous systems

Flight and fight urges, feed and breed and rest and digest inclinations are urges that originate in these systems. The sex drive depends on both systems. Coughing, swallowing and vomiting also have to do with these systems. (Source: wikipedia) I am not so sure that they go between the ANS and the semiANS. It seems to be thought that they are part of the ANS.

Cortex

The cerebral cortex is the cerebrum's (brain) outer layer of neural tissue in humans and other mammals. It is divided into two cortices, along the sagittal plane: the left and right cerebral hemispheres divided by the medial longitudinal fissure. The cerebral cortex plays a key role in memory, attention, perception, awareness, thought, language, and consciousness. The human cerebral cortex is 2 to 4 millimetres (0.079 to 0.157 in) thick (source: wikipedia).

Corpus Callosum

The corpus callosum (Latin for "tough body") is a wide, flat bundle of neural fibers about 10 cm long beneath the cortex in the brain at the longitudinal fissure. It connects the left and right cerebral hemispheres and facilitates interhemispheric communication. It is the largest white matter structure in the brain (source: Wikipedia).

Reticular Formation

The reticular formation is a diffuse network of nerve pathways in the brainstem connecting the spinal cord, cerebrum, and cerebellum, and mediating the overall level of consciousness (source: google). Activity in this nerve body can descend into the spinal cord and ascend up into the cortex.

Bone Marrow

Bone marrow is the flexible tissue in the interior of bones. In humans, red blood cells are produced by cores of bone marrow in the heads of long bones in a process known as hematopoiesis (source: wikipedia).

Neurotransmitters

Neurotransmitters carry signals from the axons of cells to the dendrites of other cells across synaptic clefts. Some wellknown neurotransmitters are dopamine and serotonin (the 'happy drug'). They play an important role in general well being and in the pathology of psychiatric illnesses.

Blood Brain Barrier

The blood-brain barrier (BBB) is a highly selective permeability barrier that separates the circulating blood from the brain extracellular fluid (BECF) in the central nervous system (CNS) (source: wikipedia).

The blood brain barrier thwarts the uptake of substances into what could be called a 'higher sphere' of the brain. Alcohol, caffeine and seditives like lorazepam (and all those ending in -pam) are however permitted through this barrier.

Amino Acids

Amino acids, according to google, are the building blocks of proteins.

mRNA

Scientists claim that DNA produces proteins through mRNA (messenger RNA ((ribonucleic acid)) ).

Chromosomes

DNA is packed within chromosomes. The human being is made of 46 of them, 23 from the mother and 23 from the father; they are double.


One day we will know as we have been known, but now we look as it were through a dim window at an enigma (v. 1 Cor. 13).


See also our chart on an anthropology of the personality. It deals shortly with the conscience, the will and the heart.



The apostle Paul: "Let nobody deceive himself, if somebody thinks he is wise in this age, let him become a fool that he may become wise (1 Cor. 3.18)!"


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