How Your Brain Conducts Itself at Attention
The conductor taps the stand. All the musicians, who had been warming up or conversing with neighbors, suddenly hush and rivet their attention on the conductor. The downbeat comes, and a marvel of coordination comes to life, each skilled player contributing to a unified yet diverse exhibition of harmonious sound.
Something like that occurs in your brain every time you are jolted from distraction to attention by a stimulus. “Paying attention sets off symphony of cell synchronization,” writes EurekAlert based on work from Northwestern University. A research team monitored EEG brain scans from subjects. Here’s how Ken Paller, a co-author of the study, described what happened when the subjects were asked to focus their attention on objects displayed on a computer screen. “When you need to dig deep to summon that extra ounce of attention,” he said, “it’s as if you engage a symphony of brain activity that can come to your rescue as millions of neurons together make the music that represents a vivid conscious experience.” That was the grand finale of this short but lively scientific performance.
Symphony: that’s intelligent design language. Some ID thinkers have compared creation to a living symphony instead of a mechanical clock. We hope you were paying attention. If you were, you just got a free concert without the need for headphones. You may now applaud the Composer (12/11/2006).