The Hard Problem

EMBARRASSMENT can be, well, embarrassing — especially if you tend to blush in public. We recognize in this, in ourselves and others, a real yet scientifically inexplicable effect.

Even a hint of a reprove by another, or admiring glance, likewise causes our skin to redden— or it might signal our getting caught sneaking a candy from a store display.

But it begs a real question of how does an invisible, seemingly intangible, subjective activity as a thought or feeling, manifest into a physical system, and affect that system biologically and visibly?

“It’s well known that the human body depends upon homeostasis,” writes Deepak Chopra, and asks: Memories and Emotions: All in The Mind or the Brain? And answers: “it is the ability to keep very complex systems in balance and to return to a state of balance when it is disturbed—

”Yet words [or images] cause us to deliberately go out of balance,” says Chopra, “and there’s no physical mechanism to explain it.”

This post is updated and republished at:

Thoughts are Things


4 responses to “The Hard Problem

  1. Hi Odin: this is such an interesting installment of Theosophy Watch.
    Many facinating questions to contemplate. I think maybe the simple act of reaching for the toothbrush or any such simple act that we so take for granted is closely related to how everything came into being, i.e. “DESIRE FIRST AROSE IN IT.


  2. In some metaphysical circles we love to repeat the phrase “thoughts are things”, but it seems that only Theosophy gives us the scientific, moral, and spiritual explanation of how and why that is, which makes for a very powerful reminder of how important it is to choose our thoughts carefully. This student finds that it is difficult to part with habituated thought patterns, especially ones you’re not altogether aware of. To get clear that we can actually decide what we wil think, consciously create new and helpful thought patterns,as opposed to going along with the tide is a liberating baby step! But if it takes a little embarrassment to jumpstart the next phase of discipline, it must be worth it, and maybe we can have a sense of humor about it all..Namaste


  3. Thank you for sharing “The gift of knowledge!”


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