01 Nov

Neuroplasticity” is the theory that the brain is not “fixed” and “hard-wired” early in life, but can be rewired so long as we live.  You can not only teach an old dog new tricks, you can teach the “dog” (actually a man or woman) to rewire his own brain to “see” with its tongue and achieve balance with its eyes rather than inner ears.  “Old dogs” like myself find this concept amazing.

The theory of neuroplasticity was proposed in the 1900s, but wasn’t taken seriously.

Paul Bach-y-Rita (1934-2006) was an American neuroscientist and one of the first to seriously study neuroplasticity and to introduce sensory substitution as a tool to treat patients suffering from neurological disorders.  By means of sensory substitution, the brain can be “re-wired” to allow the blind to to “see” with the skin on their backs.  People who’ve suffered damage to their inner ear and thereby lost their sense of balance can be trained to “re-balance” using their tongues.

It sounds crazy, but it is, instead, amazing.

video   00:10:39


Posted by on November 1, 2013 in Health Care, Video


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4 responses to “Amazing

  1. Jim

    November 1, 2013 at 11:47 AM

    Wow… that’s all I can say. Quite amazing. Thanks for the post.

  2. Steve

    November 1, 2013 at 12:36 PM

    Now I understand how a snakes tongue can determine where its next meal is hiding. I wonder if a dog gets a visual image from smelling something? And likewise, does a shark get the image of its prey by tasting the water than may have only a few drops of blood nearly a mile away. Can the shark get the image of what is bleeding or does it just get a message that there is blood in the water and the shark goes to investigate.

  3. Yartap

    November 1, 2013 at 9:14 PM


    The brain is an fascinating organ. What it can do is truly amazing. Praise to God for His creation. Amen.

    But, what else is fascinating and amazing is Paul Bach-y-Rita’s determination to look past all the naysayers and to continue on with his research and beliefs. This determination is what makes a man or woman truly great.

    Oh! By the way, my aunt and uncle just drove back from Denver to Missouri, where both received stem cell therapy for their joint problems. My uncle told me that both did not have any pains from the drive as before. Plus, he told me that he has not taken any insulin, as he does everyday (he’s having normal blood sugar readings).

    So, I did a web search, and sure enough, there are groups performing the stem cell implantation for any disease you can name. These are truly amazing times.


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