Good afternoon. Rene Descartes, the father of philosophy, had this to say. I had after this described the reasonable soul, and shown that it could by no means be educed from the power of matter, but that it must be expressly created. And that it is necessary for it to be joined and united more closely to the body, in order to have sensations and appetites similar to ours, and thus constitute a real man. I've got a big job today. I have to try to convince you That this is the foundation of all your thoughts and experiences. And not even the most famous philosopher in the world believed that. But we've come a long way since Descartes made that statement. And I would hope, I would hope that if he were around today, he might share some of the more modern views about what the brain does, and how it does it. What we are really talking about here, is some attempt to explain the attribution of sentience, the attribution of a spirit, or soul, or life force. And these ideas and concerns about them go all the way back to the early Greeks and probably beyond as long as mankind has been aware of being mankind. This had to be something curious and worth talking about. It's pretty obvious when you look around that we have different categories of things in our environment. One of the big dividing points is that some things are alive and others not. And then there's another division within that that plants are alive but they're not alive in the same way that animals are alive. Where does all this come from? What is the source or origin of these life forces? Some of these attributes have been in the past, and I think still, in some situations, some of them have not really been clearly divided into what we would call alive and not alive. And we hang on to some of these in our everyday language. There were certainly a lot of people who ascribed some sort of an essence, not necessarily life force, but some sort of an essence to things in the environment. That a rock had certain properties, I don't know, rockyness or something like that, that went along with it. And certainly, the Native Americans and a lot of other cultures, have ascribed certain powers, even some God-like powers to streams and mountains, and various weather events, holding some importance in the world view. Most of you have probably at one time or another made some comment that, my computer hates me, because it's not printing or it's not loading up a file or whatever. We talk about heavy objects wanting to fall and water seeking its own level. We don't in most cases literally believe that. But it's pretty easy to ascribe some of these characteristics based on observations, what's happening. I want to begin by showing you a little video of a new feature that the military has adopted. As you may well know, some of you I've seen in uniform so you may know from personal experience, that people in the military these days carry a lot of equipment. They have backpacks that weigh 60 or 80 pounds sometimes, and they still don't have all the stuff they need. So the military has adopted pack mules that can carry up to 400 pounds of equipment and they will follow the human soldier around and accept verbal or hand signals to do certain things. So this holds great promise for the future, in terms of providing some literal support for the military. And just as a little extra, what I would like for you to do as you watch this movie is to think up a name for the pack mule, and i'll ask a few of you afterwards what you think would be a good name for this pack mule. Let's have a look. [SOUND] >> A whole lot of your tax dollars at work on that. Anybody have a good name for the little critter? >> Gerald. >> Gerald. >> [LAUGH] >> Anybody else? Somebody must think that's a stupid name for it. Yes. >> [LAUGH] >> I don't have a name, but did you ever watch Back to the Future when that guy has the big spider machine? >> [LAUGH] I haven't seen the particular spider machine. Did you have a name for that? >> I was thinking Fred? >> Fred. >> Twinkle toes. >> Twinkle toes. >> [LAUGH] >> That's, I was just wondering whether everybody was going to think it was a guy. But if you were out there in some foreign land with this little guy following you around and accepting commands, you would have to give it a name. You just wouldn't be able to resist assigning, attributing some sort of sentience to it. I'm almost embarrassed to tell you this but we have one of those little Roombas that vacuum, and these things are supposed to be time-savers. But they don't save a lot of time if you stand around watching all the time while it's vacuuming instead of doing something else but they're really cool. They go up and get into corner and jiggle around a little and back out. His name is Herbie. >> [LAUGH] >> Named it Herbie after Herbert Hoover, get it, vacuums and Hoover. >> [LAUGH]. >> So it's easy for us to assign these things. But it's not a huge world view problem, whether we do that or not. But it has been a world view problem for a long time, wondering where it is that our animism comes around. The source of animism, our activity our movement our behavior our life force, where does it come from? Aristotle thought about this a lot, and even before Aristotle, long before Aristotle, even before we had any sort of formal ability to transmit language, our cave drawings show people trying to take the life force out of something that they would like to have for a big feast. Pictures of bows, and arrows, and spears. And down here, this one is a little harder to see, but these are real ancient cave paintings where we see depictions of the important events in the people's lives of the day. Parties going out to bring down large game, so they could have a village feast of some sort. And the controversy that emerged was, is it in the heart, or the head? Where is the source of our life and our thoughts and our minds. Aristotle, not too shabby a thinker, thought about this a lot and decided that it was in the heart, and that the head, although important was secondary. He viewed the head and the brain which he didn't have the advantage of having one of these nifty little plastic models. But there were a lot of people who were knowledgeable about medicine and physiology in his day. He knew that we had a circulatory system, and that there were a lot of blood vessels in the brain, and he said, aha! What the brain is doing is serving pretty much the same function as the radiator on your car, and cooling the body, cooling the body. Makes a little bit of sense I guess, because after all if you're a little bit under the weather and have a fever mom puts her hand on your forehead, oh you've got a fever. Maybe that's because the brain wasn't really doing its job that day allowing you to get too warm and not feel well. [BLANK AUDIO] When our mind is really working hard, like if we encounter something very fearsome, and get frightened, what happens? Boom, boom, boom, boom, boom, our heart sends us a message, and that's part of what we respond to. When we look out across the way and see this person that we're thinking, oh my goodness I would love to spend the rest of my life with that person, I'm in love. Boom, boom, boom, boom, boom, our heart gives us a response. The head, seems pretty silent. We don't have any boom, boom, boom going on inside of our brain when we have an experience like this. So just through casual observation, of course it must be the heart instead of the brain. But Aristotle, and others at the time, were good observers and they eventually, not even eventually, it didn't take them that long to figure out, that it was really the head that was the source of this life force. You can put a sharp object through the heart and the life forces quickly go away. You can put a club to the head and the life forces quickly go away. If you choose some other portion of the body, like the hand and put a sharp object or a club against the hand, you actually are likely to see an increase in life forces as the person jumps up and down and screams and yells ow, ow, ow, my hand, my hand. So the head and the heart really turned out by by observation to be the primary places. Just two weeks ago, I saw a confirmation of this in the comics. The little hunter hat hiding behind the bush shoots an arrow at a deer, I guess, and misses and the deer runs away. The deer runs away and then along comes somebody with a club and goes out and bonk, comes back. Caption says time to reevaluate who is who in this whole hunter gatherer thing. Who's who in this whole hunter gatherer thing. So now we've got the brain being in charge of this.