My brother sent me an article this morning that was fascinating, and, in my opinion, a little scary.
Scientists have apparently been able to identify the area in the brain the an elusive mental state known as “flow” originates.
“Flow” is that feeling of effortless concentration that characterizes outstanding performance in all kinds of skills. Flow has been maddeningly difficult to pin down, let alone harness, but a wealth of new technologies could soon allow us all to conjure up this state. The plan is to provide a short cut to virtuosity, slashing the amount of time it takes to master a new skill – be it tennis, playing the piano or marksmanship.
Please read the rest of this article…..”Zap Your Brain into the Zone….Fast Track to Pure Focus”
Here are my concerns…..
1) Part of the pleasure of being good at something is the fact that you have worked very hard to master a talent and can enjoy the sense of accomplishment. If you didn’t have to work to accomplish something, how rewarding could it be?
2) Before the “flow” is activated in our brains (most effectively), I believe that we must first identify the unique talent within us. This alone may take a lifetime.
3) The fact that the journalist allowed “Michael Weisend, who works at the Mind Research Network in Albuquerque, New Mexico, to hook my brain up to what’s essentially a 9-volt battery” is a little scary considering that human nature (our ego to be more precise) will always desires instant gratification – especially if “the electrodes somehow reduce activity in the prefrontal cortex – the area used in critical thought….”
Scary thought #3 is what I am most worried about. We can bet on the fact that if there is a way to make ourselves better at something without having to work at it…..we will do (or pay whatever) it takes to make that happen.
And then…….part of our population (the “1%” part) will be comprised of bored, robot minded individuals that will most likely lack emotion (which I’m pretty sure could be connected to critical thinking somehow) who will be able to do anything – effortlessly.
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