Friday, May 3, 2013

Neurology Meets the Holy Spook

Usually when science and religion meet, there’s a great butting of heads and a total lack of agreement.  However, this time, science and religion have came together to prove neurological changes in believers while they are, as they describe, speaking in tongues through a baptism by the Holy Spirit.  Brain imaging has proven it.  Never did I think my psychology degree would come in handy proving the supernatural in quite this way, but when you’ve got proof, you gotta go with it. 

The brain is the most amazing machine known to man. Added that it's a biological machine makes it even more amazing.  Like we've stated in previous blogs, the brain is a machine that runs on electrical impulses.  The brain is so intricate, researchers still can't say they know how it all works.  The electrical impulses - whch are different kinds of neurons firing across synaptic gaps, inside the most intricate web imaginable, carry information to different parts of the brain.  We could write a whole blog on the different parts of the brain and their functions, but we'll just take a look at the ones of particular interest in this case.  

The following study illustrates that there IS still magic left in the world, some things can't be explained naturally, so that makes them SuperNatural.  There are some question marks below, but it's undeniable that some UberEnergy is manipulating how the brain works, things that are expected to happen don't.  The Lost Creek folks aint gonna push religion on you, but this study pretty much rules out everything else.  As always, take in the evidence we present, and make your own interpretation based on what you feel is right.

A neurological study of believers speaking in tongues, also known as practicing Glossolalia, was carried out by Dr. Andrew Newberg at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine.  The results have researchers baffled, as they back up what the believers claim is happening.  The believers say the speech isn't coming from them, but Through them, from God, by the Holy Spirit.  State of the art brain scans were taken while believers were praying regularly, in English, and then when they were 'speaking in tongues.'  

The scans showed a very significant decrease in activity in the frontal lobes during the speaking in tongues prayers.  What does that mean? The frontal lobes are the part of our brains that, among other functions, is activated when we are speaking, in our mother language.  Decreased activity in that part of the brain means they weren't using natural means of speaking, it was coming from somewhere else.  The ability to express language happens in those frontal lobes.  If that's not happening, some big questions are raised.  Reasoning and self-control also happens in the frontal lobes.


The results also showed diminished activity in the  dorsolateral prefontal cortex.  What in the world is that?  When you are doing something on purpose, this part of your brain lights up with activity.  But when they were praying in tongues, it declined in activity.  So the prayers weren't purposefully doing this.  This part of the brain also helps control executive functions, which is just thinking and doing.  If that isn't happening, where are the prayers coming from....?  This part of the brain is also involved in humans' responses to rules of behavior.  Diminished activity would mean a sort of loss of inhibition, letting go. 

Finally, the scans showed a decline in activity of a part of the brain called the left caudate.  This part of the brain is involved in motor and emotional control, so researchers concluded that while the practitioners may be mindful of what's going on, they have ceded control over their bodies and emotions.  They have given up control and turned it over to ......? 

Interestingly, a control study was done on a group of atheists and non-believers, who were instructed to try and meditate or contemplate God's existence.  NO difference in these parts of the brain were found in this group.  1 Cor 14:2  For anyone who speaks in a tongue does not speak to people but to God. Indeed, no one understands them; they utter mysteries by the Spirit. looks like if you don't believe, it aint gonna happen, but if you Do believe, brain scans show it's really happening.

Here’s an interesting piece from Nightline, and whoever was behind the scenes putting it together found an amazing story, even if it is presented by the guy who did the infamous documentary with Michael Jackson.  It highlights the beliefs of one pastor and includes the study mentioned above. Watch with an open mind:

The history of speaking in tongues is a long one, going back to Biblical times.  Nobody on Lost Creek is yet qualified to tell you all about it, but if you want to do a little reading, click hereto see what the 2nd chapter of Acts has to say about it.  We will give you this part, and then discuss it a little:

Mark 16:15-18: And he said to them, “Go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation. Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned. And these signs will accompany those who believe: in my name they will cast out demons; they will speak in new tongues; they will pick up serpents with their hands; and if they drink any deadly poison, it will not hurt them; they will lay their hands on the sick, and they will recover.”

Pretty heavy, huh?  This is a good example of how different peoples interpretations of the Word causes denominations to break off. The snake handlers take this passage and dance around with copperheads and rattlers, refusing medical treatment if they’re bitten believing God will heal them if it’s His will. Others debate who Jesus was talking about.  Was he addressing the apostles, and meaning these signs will accompany YOU, the people I’m talking to here right now, or did he mean anyone who came to Believe, even if it’s 2000 years later.   This one little passage can be taken so many different ways.  The Lost Creek elders advise the use of  common sense, read the whole story, then decide for yourself.  

Modern day tongue talking is commonly agreed to have taken off in 1906, in Los Angeles.  An African American preacher named William Seymour started a Pentecostal revival, the meetings being held on Azusa Street.  The Azusa Street story is another blog in itself, but to summarize, for the first time blacks and whites were worshipping together under one roof, the building filled to capacity and people lined up outside, looking in the windows, anxious to get in.  Seymour had studied under Charles Praham, who instilled in him that speaking in tongues didn't stop after the apostles.  Worshippers left Azusa Steet asserting that had been/still were Filled with the Spirit, carried their stories back to their families and friends, and the notion caught like wildfire.

William J Seymour

It is commonly agreed upon that while speaking in tongues, what comes out can be an actual language, unknown to the person praying, or more commonly an unknown language. The unknown language has been purported to be the "language of the Spirit," a "heavenly language," or even the "language of the angels."  In a recent conversation with a believer, I was told that God inhabits our praise.  What's that mean? I was told for instance when the music is going, everyone is into it, on the same wavelength, we are sending up some of that positive energy, "and He sort of comes down and absorbs/enjoys/revels in it. Our praise draws him nearer to us, and opens our minds and Spirits to "usher" him in!"  Also added in the conversation was "When you speak in tongues you are praying in the Spirit, and it's a precious treasure, because the Devil can't understand it."  

We've found and presented evidence, make of it what you will.  Decide with your head and your heart. The study discussed has raised more questions than we have time to even ask, but we're following where the butterflies take us.  As mentioned in the quote above, being on the same 'wavelength' is pretty close to Carl Jung's Collective Consciousness that is gonna be explained along with his explanation of synchronicity, or meaningful coincidences in the next Medicine Show.  We've got some research to do on that one, so think this one over....til next time!


You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart
 NIV, Jeremiah29:13

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