Idiot Savant and Synaesthesia apoptosis

Rita Carter “apoptosis”—

‘Inside the developing brain individual neurons race about looking for a linked team of other neurons to join as though in some frantic partiy game. Every cell has to find its place in the general scheme, and if it fails it dies in the ruthless pruning process known as apoptosis or programmed cell death. The purpose of apoptosis in the immagure brain is to strengthen and reationalize the connections between those that are left, and to prevent the brain becoming literally overstuffed with its own cells. This ‘sculpting’ process, though essential, may also have a price. The connections that get killed off during it include some that may otherwise confer the sort of intuitive skills we label gifts. Eidetic (photographic) memory, for example, is quite common among young children but usually disappears during the years of cerebral pruning. Incomplete apoptosis may account for the astonishing abilities of so-called idiot savants, as well as being one causal factor of their deficits. Conversely, apoptosis that runs wild and strips out far too many connections is thought to be one of the causes of imaired intelligence in Down’s syndrome.’ p22 Rita Carter Mapping the Mind.

Next paragraph–

‘A baby’s brain contains some things that an adult’s does not. There are, for example, connections between the auditory and visual corticies, and others between the retina and the part of the thalamus that takes in sound. These connections probably give the infant the experience of ‘seeing’ sounds and ‘hearing’ colours – a condition that occasionally continues into adulthood and is known as synaesthesia. Babies show emotion dramtically, but the area’s of the brain that in adults are linked to the conscious experience of emotions are not active in a newborn baby. Such emotions may therefore be unconscious.’ ibid

She goes on with ‘peek-a-boo’ games with infants and ‘terrible two’s’.

Dharma Singh Khalsa MD in Brain Longevity p88-89—

‘Limbic rejuvenation also appears to increase slightly some patients capacity for an ability called synesthesia, one of the most interesting phenomena known to neurology.’

‘Synesthesia is, basically, the blending and coordinating of the senses. You probably enjoy a mild degree of synesthesia yourself, because a modest degree of it is very common. FOr example, your senses of taste and smell are closely linked. If something smells bad to you, it brobably tastes bad, too. Also, for most peiple, high pitched sounds evoke images of bright colors, and low pitched sounds suggest dark colors.’

‘But people with profound synesthesia–whic occurs in one out of every 10,000 people–are able to literally “see” sounds and “taste” colors. This may sound like a disturbing trait–akin to schizophrenic hallucination–but it is not a pathological condition, and causes no distress to the otherwise normal people who experience it. In cact, people with synesthesia usually love the condition, because tit offers them such a rich and sensual experience of the world. When a person’s synesthesia fades, as it sometimes does, he or she usually regrets the loss very deeply.’

‘Synesthesia tends to be more heightened in creative people. The writer Vladimir Nabokov had “colored hearing,” and the painter Georgia O’ Keeffe was able to “see” music. Jerry Garcia once noted that “musical notes, for me, have shape, and form, and color.”’

‘One of the unique advantages of elevated synesthesia is that it offers incredible powers of memory. For example, one famous synestheste, a Russian named Shereshevskii (who was studied by the prominent psychologist A. R. Luria), was able to remember lists of hundreds of n umbers, poetry in languages he did not know, and seemingly endless strings of letters. He could repeat this material backward, and could remember it for many years. In fact, his greatest problem was finding a way to forget information. (He solved the problem by imagining himself writing facts on a blackboard, and then erasing the board.).’

Khalsa then goes into extraodinary cases of photographic memory noting William James for example memorizing the 12-volume Pardise Lost. Famous stock broker Charles Schwab has it and he said Napoleon ‘could greet many thousands of his soldiers by name.’

Per Satguru Subramunia, ‘for every sound there is a color and a form.’ I believe the synesthesia ability is there in one degree or another in all of us but certain environments are necessary to call it out. Most notably concentration which is at the essese of creativity. Personally my own memory shocks me/is unbelieviably good. People tell me I should go on Jeapordy all the time.

Once on sci.physics I asked about synaestheisa and someone replied they had it. I asked them what colors were associated with what sounds and wrote them down. I then went to my Laya Yoga book by Shyam Sundar Goswami p107 and they matched.

Nothing is forgotten. The only limitation we have on memory is disease and physical limitations of the organs of the senses. Under hypnosis a person can be made to recall things with incredible accuracy. In holographic terms, it is the removal of other wave superimpressed on the single wave that contains the memory. Association is a means of doing this. Recollection is the problem. The memorys are there but recalling them is the problem. Kinesthetic memory (bike-riding memory) is the longest lasting/and last to go. Alzheimer’s patients literally ‘forget’ how their heat beats or lungs breathe.

Mike Dubbeld