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Sharon Begley

  • ... the mind can store an estimated 100 trillion bits of information — compared with which a computer's mere billions are virtually amnesiac ...

    • Sharon Begley,
    • in Sharon Begley et al., "Memory," in Newsweek ()
  • But the mind's cross-indexing puts the best librarian to shame.

    • Sharon Begley,
    • in Sharon Begley et al., "Memory," in Newsweek ()
  • The mind, of course, is just what the brain does for a living.

    • Sharon Begley,
    • in Sharon Begley et al., "Memory," in Newsweek ()
  • Like sand on the beach, the brain bears the footprints of the decisions we have made, the skills we have learned, the actions we have taken.

  • Each connection that neuroscientists forged between a neurochemical and a behavior, and that geneticists made between a gene and a behavior, dealt another blow to the notion of an efficacious will. The discoveries paint[ed] an image of individuals as automatons, slaves to their genes or their neurotransmitters, and with no more free will than a child's radio-controlled car. [But] because neuroplasticity and the power of mind and mental training effect changes in the very structure and function of our brain, free will and moral responsibility become meaningful in a way that they have not been for some time in the scientific West.

  • The conscious act of thinking about one's thoughts in a different way changes the very brain circuits that do that thinking ...

Sharon Begley, U.S. scientist, journalist