Mind Body Seminar: Oct./Nov. 1976
EDUCATING BOTH HALVES
OF THE BRAIN
Four One-Day Symposia
Chicago, October 22
Minneapolis, October 23
Philadelphia, November 5
Boston, November 6
The Institute for the Study of Human Knowledge
Our contemporary system of education teaches only half the brain. It is specialized for verbal-analysis, the process of examining separately many aspects of a puzzle. What this process leaves out, of course, is an understanding of the relationship between things, the perception of whole systems.
Yet many concerned people in diverse areas of contemporary life, from students of the mind to those concerned with energy policy, to those concerned with health and healing note the loss of this holistic mode of knowledge. Our students are not being offered the education they require to understand the complex nature of the world and themselves, an education for the whole brain.
There is, however, a growing understanding among scientists and educators that the capacity to understand in a holistic manner can be educated, as the capacity for language can be trained. This symposium brings together the new scientific discoveries on the functions of the brain and consciousness, a knowledge of the differences in brain function between people, and innovative techniques in education in a new synthesis; we are now, perhaps for the first time, able to draw methods and an understanding from both Western scientific and Eastern experiential traditions towards an education for the whole mind.
This symposium is intended for teachers, educational administrators, and all those concerned with education. It presents two of the leading researchers in the field of hemispheric specialization.
JOSEPH BOGEN, M.D. has been for many years a consultant in neurosurgery at the California Institute of Technology in connection with the split-brain studies. He is presently Senior Neurosurgeon of the Ross-Loos Medical Group, and Associate Clinical Professor of Neurosurgery at the University of Southern California School of Medicine.
ROBERT ORNSTEIN, Ph.D. is Associate Professor of Medical Psychology at the Langley Porter Neuropsychiatric Institute, University of California, San Francisco. His current research interests are the psychology of meditation, biofeedback, and the conscious functions of the two hemispheres of the brain. He is the author of THE PSYCHOLOGY OF CONSCIOUSNESS and the editor of THE NATURE OF HUMAN CONSCIOUSNESS. He is currently the director of HUMAN NATURE, a magazine of the human sciences.
9:00 – 11:15
The Split Brain and the Human Duality
The two cerebral hemispheres in humans are specialized for different cognitive functions—the left for verbal and analytic thought, the right for intuition and understanding patterns. When the two hemispheres are surgically disconnected they each appear conscious: i.e., two separate conscious minds in one head. Not only are they separate minds, but because of their specialization they are different, not duplicate minds.
11:30 – 12:00
QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS
1:30 – 3:15
Education and the Two Halves of the Brain
Our schools have been focusing most of their resources on tutoring only the left half of the brain. To develop all of a child’s capacities we must have curricula and materials for both sides of the brain, and we must cultivate the ability to use these two different minds in a complementary way. Research evidence from EEG and other studies which bear on how the two hemispheres specialize in the two kinds of thought will be presented.
3:30 – 4:00
QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS
4:15 – 5:00
Holistic capacities can be developed using verbal materials. In several cultures, particularly those of the Middle and Far East, traditional teaching stories are constructed to educate both modes. This lecture will offer a chance to listen to and reflect upon a series of teaching stories.