What Are Thoughts?

“The mind is not a vessel to be filled, but a fire to be kindled.”

– Plutarch

A very difficult question to answer.

A question that many have attempted to answer and many are still attempting to answer.

There just isn’t a simple answer yet.

Some believe that “thoughts are the DNA of the universe.”

Others wonder if thoughts are specific neurons in the brain firing off or if it is a group of neurons firing off in a specific way that creates thoughts.

Regardless as to whether we take the spiritual or the scientific route we are still very unclear as to what exactly thoughts are. We can speculate as much as we’d like, but the answer still eludes us.

Elizabeth Dougherty explains how the brain works very succinctly in a post of hers, stating, “The human brain is composed of about 100 billion nerve cells (neurons) interconnected by trillions of connections, called synapses. On average, each connection transmits about one signal per second. Some specialized connections send up to 1,000 signals per second.”

Though she ends with another quote from Charles Jennings, director of neurotechnology at the MIT McGovern Institute for Brain Research, saying, “Somehow…that’s producing thought.”

Even with all of the information presented to us about how the brain operates, we are unable to answer scientifically just what a thought is.

Dr. Ezequiel Morsella, an assistant professor of Social Cognitive Neuroscience at San Francisco State University, put it mildly when he said, “What thoughts are remains mysterious from a neuroscientific point of view.”

While thoughts remain mysterious in the sense that we don’t scientifically know where they come from or how they work, they are certainly an enormous part of our lives.

We have thoughts every day, every second of every day, and to comprehend how enormously complex it is to understand how all of these things work in tandem, we can think of it as viewing everything in a forest – from the biggest tree to the smallest bug – at the exact same moment. That’s how fast our brains work in an instant! And with such little effort!

Our ability to think, reason, speculate, and produce things is truly a fantastically intricate and amazing capability that we are all born with.

Lucky us that we have been given such power.

Now all we have to do is use that power to serve others and for the benefit of the human race.

Start using your gift of thought.