Labor Law Guy

Your Tax Dollars at Work: NIH Proves Pineal Gland Houses the Soul

Posted in Random Musings by laborlawguy on April 2, 2009

Rene Descartes is not only turning over in his grave; he’s no doubt dancing about and shouting with glee.

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) have now determined that the pea-sized pineal gland located deep in the brain is indeed the “Seat of the Soul,” as the French philosopher Descartes proclaimed.

Of course, Descartes also said, “I think, therefore I am,” and thus created the comma splice.

I guess that NIH scientists are too shy to admit that they’ve discovered the soul in each of us, but they are pretty gaga over what they did discover–more than 600 genes working in complete synchronicity to control various human functions such as one’s immune system, the birth and death of one’s cells, the production of one’s cholesterol, one’s patterns of sleeping and waking (which they already knew), and more.

To get technical:

The pineal gland is controlled by a brain structure known as the suprachiasmic nucleus, located at the base of the brain, Dr. [David] Klein [chief of the study] said. The suprachiasmatic nucleus is known as The Mind’s Clock, because it coordinates body rhythms in response to changes in lighting that are detected by the eyes. The suprachiasmatic nucleus is connected to the pineal gland by nerve cells.

I’ll stick with Descartes’s “Seat of the Soul” because “I think therefore I am,” or something like that.


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