Saturday, April 26, 2014


Let's talk about love. How does love rewire the brain? When we meet somebody new and exciting, they invade our synapses like a virus, triggering neurochemicals that feed into attraction, arousal, even obsession. We get distracted. We think about that special someone all the time, even in the middle of a brilliantly stimulating lecture. But we're not just thinking about them. We're building an internal model, a simulation that helps us predict what they'll think or how they'll feel. Of course, relationships get into trouble when simulation meets reality, which begs the question: Do we ever really fall in love with another person or just with our idea of who they are?

Why do we bother with relationships? Neuropsychiatrists say that we're hardwired to crave intimate connections. We long for love. Of course, the reality is, it usually ends in heartache, leaving our delicate psyches bruised, if not completely shattered. Why do we even bother playing those odds? I guess because we only have to get it right once. And when it's right, we know it. Even the memory of a fulfilling relationship can sustain us, and remind us that although we may be feeling down at this particular moment, we're never truly alone.

- Dr. Daniel Pierce in Perception - 2x02 - Alienation


What is normal? If you feel sad, do you just have a case of the blues, or are you suffering from a neurochemical imbalance? The vast majority of the case studies we've been looking at involve patients whose brains are anything but normal, and there's no question they suffer. it all bad? For some, their neurological states might actually protect them from painful truths that no one would want to think about. Others develop a cheerful disposition that may help them cope with situations the rest of us would find disturbing. And if we are to establish a baseline, then we also have to ask ourselves how the brains of even so called "normal" people respond to certain stimuli. And if we're able to treat those people living with neurological disorders, restore them to "normalcy," well of course we're helping them. But might we sometimes also be stripping away what makes them unique? Robbing them of an essential part of who they are?

- Dr. Daniel Pierce in Perception - 1x01 - Pilot