Do you sometimes feel you contradict yourself? Are there others in your brain competing or collaborating to create the illusion of a singular self?
It seems quite clear that the more the experts understand the brain (which might be very little right now) the more they are coming to the conclusion the self is an illusion, or to be more precise, there may be many selves within one brain. This very unintuitive realisation is as profound as it is fascinating.
Now for some hardcore science, that baffles the mind, or shall I say minds. After reading many books and articles on the subject from well-respected experts in the field such as Michael Gazzaniga, V.S Ramachandran, Oliver Sacks and many others. It seems the aspect that there could be more than one self is being proved empirically, and this I believe may explain how someone can hold contradictory ideas and beliefs without crashing the system.
Rigid experiments made on split-brain patients over the last few decades have proven that at least two different personalities with different views, different tastes, different abilities, different wants exist within one brain. These experiments are made on people who have had their corpus callosum (the part connecting the two hemispheres) totally and completely severed, so essentially one side of the brain does not have physical nerve connection to the other.
Since these experiments in many cases did not give the two hemisphere’s enough time to disassociate from each other after the procedure, we can only assume the two personalities had already existed prior to the separation, and would explain such weird phenomena as alien hand syndrome, body integrity identity disorder and probably many other weird things like me talking to my self when I’m alone.
Although only two personalities have been discovered in an empirical fashion thanks to the split brain patients, It would not be far-fetched to speculate you can have more than two personalities. In fact in the field of psychiatry Dissociative Identity Disorder (DID), previously known as Multiple Personality Disorder (MPD), is not something new, but has been debated, and only very apparent when an individual has gone through some traumatic event, but this disorder also has degree’s of dissociation, where its hard to pinpoint its validity.
Just observing my self carefully, I can detect parts of my thinking brain struggling to reconcile and agree on actions, and can sometimes create a depressive state, where different wants are pulling in opposite directions. I sometimes find contradictions in my ideas and philosophies, which are hard to cope with internally never mind trying to explain them away to others without sounding like a flip-flopper.
I enjoy having internal dialogue. Am I going crazy, or is this normal? This is a question I would like to pose.