Hallucinations have been documented since ancient times, but the explanation of the causes is still not definite. Half a century ago, Jack Cowan embarked on a journey to define and explain hallucinations mathematically. His research showed that our brain generates patterns that resemble neural architecture, but no one could actually explain how are these patterns generated. The initial patterns are simple, but with the triggering of more complex cognitive functions, the patterns are increasing in complexity. The hallucinations, despite the research advancement, are still quite an unknown phenomenon, examined and interpreted by scientists around the world.

Key Takeaways:

  • A 1979 research paper concluded that hallucinations reflect the architecture of the neural network of the brain.
  • Hallucination researchers have built upon a mathematical idea from the 50s called a Turing mechanism.
  • Hallucinogens seem to disrupt the brain, causing random neuron signals to be amplified.

“Experiments have shown that hallucinogens like LSD appear to disrupt the normal filtering mechanisms the brain employs”

Read more: https://www.quantamagazine.org/a-math-theory-for-why-people-hallucinate-20180730/

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