Since the start of this class, actually before it, I have been willing to accept that the brain is behavior. While I still accept that and am comfortable with it, it's difficult to explain many things that go on with behavior, and the more I think about it, the more come up. With the example of the cricket who orients toward the male song, but not on evey trial, although the input to the cricket is the same (the controlled, external, laboratory input anyway) the response is not. Is this response, or lack of it, dependent on several neurons which influence the firing of a couple neurons that determine the pathway that the input will take, or is there something about one neuron that causes it to fire a certain way, with no real predictability or reason? IF that is the case, is behavior random? It can't be, can it? And why would psychoanalysis and therapy prove helpful in modifying many types of behavior. Does frequency encourage one pathway to be activated more than another, so that practice makes (near) perfect? We can say that generally, the femal cricket does respond to the male song, but not always. So can people say that they generally behave one way in a situation? Does saying and believing that influence behavior the next time that situation arises? In some cases, certainly imagining yourself acting a certain way can influence your behavior, but does in a case where someone surprises you, can spontaneous behavior be influenced by which pathway is activated most often. See, that is part of where I get confused. If much of the way that input is processed depends on our genes and on how neurons are connected, much control can the I function have. I want to say a lot but I'm not sure. And what does it mean when people say that they don't understand why they behaved a certain way. This is something that has definately happened to me. I know that the language center is in one part of the brain, so maybe other parts do know why I behaved a certain way, but aren't able to say it. I have read about split brain patients who, right after surgery, can reach into their closet for a dress with their right hand, while their left hand, much to their reported distress, reaches for a blue one instead. How come the I function gets to say, "I didn't want the blue dress?" What if the blue dress is actually a better choice? Some part of the brain wanted it (If we can use the word want in this situation) So then does the I function have more input into the other input boxes?

I'm sorry that this is a paragraph of questions, but they are things I struggle with in this topic.

Oh, one other thing is thinking. Thinking often depends on input that is already inside the brain, in fact, for me it's eiser to think without having other stuff going on around me. Thinking about a person or situation is one of the things that changes depending on mood or many other things. There again, the same input can lead to different responses.

Don't apologize. Lots of questions, and associated thoughts, is exactly what you should be having. And they are interesting ones, that we'll pursue further. And your general tack is very much along the direction I think we'll be going: there are lots of parts (boxes) without any one always being in charge. And the thing has to be influenced by genes and experience and (in some sense) by oneself. We'll see if we can imagine all that in terms of neurons. PG