Lizard Brain & Some Abstract Thoughts


Photo by Marco Secchi on Unsplash

I've been working on a post that I'm hoping will be a good one but won't be releasing it until next week. BUT, I wanted to put something out this week and share some abstract thoughts from some things my imagination has been gleaning from the past few days.

Lately, I've been reading from Matthew Lieberman's book 'Social' as he writes about human psychology and the ways our brains work. It has been a rather fascinating exploration and deeply revealing into humanity's need for community and relationship with others.

I was kind of distracted however, as Lieberman wrote on what psychologists refer to as the "Lizard" brain. This is the part of the brain considered to function the very base elements of human consciousness; often referred to as the 4 F's - Fighting, Fleeing, Feeding, & Fooling Around.

Reflecting on these four instincts I couldn't help but question, is human consciousness really so self absorbed & narcissistic that it has no base awareness to the consciousness of others and the need for social connection? Where does human empathy & compassion come from? Surely they are not just self motivated?

Human identity has to extend from beyond just self consciousness. The knowing of ourselves is only possible when we find relational acceptance from others as they mirror and reflect back to us the ways in which we connect to them. The greatest wonder of human nature is our extraordinary ways of shaping & benefiting the lives of others around us. The reward of which is receiving the same from others as they shape who we are & enrich our character.

Heading into the week of Easter, I think of so many people's relationship with God. What was his motivation for reaching out in relationship with his creation? Why might he want to incarnate into the human form of Jesus, just to be put through the experience of an excruciating pains of death? It seems God would hardly be motivated by these identified 4 F's of the lizard brain. There must be something more, something even deeper.

It seems God would hardly be motivated by these identified 4 F’s of the lizard brain. There must be something more, something even deeper.

The apostle John, I think, gives us a glimpse into this deeper motivation of God. He says, "God so loves..." There is no real need for God to fight, flee, be fed, or fool with his creation but, love his creation; yes, this is something of substance! This is a discovery of fulfilling beauty in God's identity as he shapes & benefits human nature through a deep relational love that in turn allows us to experience, understand, and become aware of God's consciousness and nature.

So, is human consciousness reduced solely to that of a lizard brain? Perhaps some may resolve to this abstract self redundancy. I'd rather look beyond it & see a deeper nature to human identity. A nature built on the foundations & character of love for all humanity; and yes, a reciprocated love for humanity's creator too.