Friday, January 25, 2019

Lizard Brain

A letter to my Primary Care Physician today...

Thank you for the great visit yesterday! Please thank your nurse for me as well.  She was professional and kind.

I had an “ah ha” moment this morning that may benefit your other patients, as it did me. From Richard Rohr’s Daily Meditation for today, regarding our “lizard brain”.  Full article here.

”In turning our gaze to this divine truth—in dropping our many modes of scapegoating and self-justification—we gain compassion toward ourselves and all others who suffer. It largely happens on the psychic and unconscious level, but that is exactly where our hurts and our will to violence lie, lodged in the primitive “lizard brain,” where we have almost no rational control.”

Then this from Psychology Today. Full article here.

[The Limbic Cortex] is the part of the brain that is phylogenetic ally very primitive. Many people call it “The Lizard Brain” because the limbic system is about all a lizard has for brain function. It is in charge of fight, flight, feeding, fear, and freezing-up... The point to all of this is that 12-step recovery recognized (before the limbic system was described) that we all have this tendency to do what we don’t want to do and we are powerless about certain behaviors. Understanding this automatic behavior allows us to surrender to what we cannot control. It frees us to do the next right thing by staying in the present rather than worrying about the future or being shamed and experience guilt about the past. It takes practice.

Post Script: Also see this article How To Tame Your Lizard Brain by By Susan Murphy, PhD of Desert Health.