Things happen. Wind blows. Rain falls. Dust rises. Sun burns. There is nothing I can do about it. I ride it out the best way I can. I don’t think of stopping the rain or blocking the sun. I just duck and let it blow over.

The brain reacts. The core, with its memories and characteristics, responds. Like a chemical reaction. It happens. It leaves some by-products that produce more reactions. And so it goes on.

It may be possible to analyze the cause of a reaction. A depression off the coast caused a cloudburst over the land. The memory of a previous encounter brought about the present reaction from the brain. I can’t control the reaction any more than I can control the cloudburst.

The difference is that the cloudburst is out there and the reaction is from within. I cannot ‘see’ a depression forming over the sea. But maybe I can watch this reaction surfacing from inside me. Maybe there is a part of the brain that can watch the other part operating. The passive part observing the active part.

Question is, is the whole brain engaged in producing the reaction? If so, then there can be no watching except looking at the reaction after it is all over, from hindsight. If some part of the brain is inactive, then there is a possibility of observing the other active part AT THE SAME TIME, simultaneously, when the reaction is going on.

Assuming that it is possible for the brain to observe its own reactions ‘from a distance’ as it were, dispassionately, can I become aware of it, find out if it is so operating and if not, is it is possible to activate that process somehow?

The word necessity comes to mind. The brain apparently operates through necessity. If the Brian thinks it is necessary to do something, it will do it. In a time of crisis, to do what is necessary becomes the brain’s overriding concern. For the brain to observe its own reactions there must be a sense of constant crisis; it must be in a state of abiding crisis; it must operate in a critical mode all the time.

Anand Betanabhotla
आनंद बेतनभोटला

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