Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Temporal Lobe Epilepsy

"If an epileptic seizure is focused in a particular sweet spot in the temporal lobe...the effect is something like a cognitive seizure, marked by changes of personality, hyperreligiosity (an obsession with religion and a feeling of religious certainty), hypergraphia (extensive writing on a subject, usually about religion), the false sense of an external presence, and often, the hearing of voices that are attributed to a god. Some fraction of history's prophets, martyrs, and leaders appear to have temporal lobe epilepsy." - David Eaglman, Incognito: The Secret Lives of the Brain, pg. 207.
This of course brings up the question of what really happened to the Buddha as he sat beneath the bodhi tree.  Did he simply just have some sort of stroke?

Thanks and a tip of the hat to Sepehr for pointing out the quote to me.

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