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Publisher's Summary

Conventional science has long held the position that 'the mind' is merely an illusion, a side effect of electrochemical activity in the physical brain. Now in paperback, Dr Jeffrey Schwartz and Sharon Begley's groundbreaking work, The Mind and the Brain, argues exactly the opposite: that the mind has a life of its own.

©2002 Jeffrey M. Schwartz and Sharon Begley (P)2011 HarperCollins Publishers

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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Life application

What did you love best about The Mind and the Brain?

Experience is a good teacher. This book explains why. OCD patients have a bad habit. This book describes the four step process to break the bad habit. Learn how a stroke patient can regain some lost functionality. Learn how some students with language problems overcame them. Learn what some serious musicians facing career ending decisions done to overcome the struggle. <br/>You could summarize the above in less than 30 minutes. But it would not include the history or the series of scientific experiments that changed the thinking of the scientific community. <br/>Some Christians believe in “free will”. Others believe in predestination. The author makes the case for free will but from a Buddhist perspective. <br/>And while many of the Ten Commandments contain “shall not”, the scriptures also contain some things to do. Philippians 4:8…Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest… think on these things.<br/>

What other book might you compare The Mind and the Brain to and why?

Talent is Overrated. Some of the research presented by both books blends together.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Opens our minds to possibilities

This non-fiction book was engaging and informative. It is kind of dense, but once you get into it, there is so much great information about the brain and how it works. Neuroplasticity provides so many possibilities.

The reader does an excellent job.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Lullaby reading

Would you try another book from Jeffrey M. Schwartz and Sharon Begley and/or Arthur Morey?

I might, as the content did sound interesting, but I found it hard to pay attention to the words as the reading performance was more like something I would expect from a relaxation meditation.

What was your reaction to the ending? (No spoilers please!)

Didn't get to the end.

What didn???t you like about Arthur Morey???s performance?

Dry, quiet, flat, sleep-inducing. Good enunciation, so the words were clear. I would choose to listen to him recite a book that I want to fall to sleep to.

Any additional comments?

Might have to buy the book in print to properly review the book as I couldn't listen to it all the way through.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Interesting premise, but gets too weighed down

Would you listen to The Mind and the Brain again? Why?

Probably not - I honestly couldn't get through the whole recording. I still have >1 hour left in the recording, but I felt it was becoming far too weighed down with repetitive scientific studies instead of discussing their application near the end.

Any additional comments?

I absolutely loved the first half of this book. I am a physician and was intrigued by the evidence that they present that has a clinical application for my own patients, as well as friends and family. However, the 2 hours spent describing in detail the atrocities performed on lab-chimps was wholly unnecessary. It was not enjoyable listening, and truly not what the book was about. I really appreciated the scientific results of the chimp studies, but the message got lost. As the story progressed, it moved from a more clinical application to repetitively belaboring endless studies. The premises in this book about how we learn, how our brain learns and changes, and how we can use this information to change the way we teach ourselves and our kids is amazingly useful- but I think a lot of people aren't going to read it because of the length and serious scientific studies. A revision for the lay-person just discussing the results and clinical application would be very useful. I would still recommend the book for what can be learned - but with the caveat that there may be some times you really have to stick with it and tough it out.

0 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Tim
  • United States
  • 12-06-12

Hard to Digest

While interesting and fascinating, "The Mind and the Brain" was just hard to digest because it was written in a way to be very technical and you need the necessary vocabulary to understand the authors. It's almost too technical for someone to pickup from the coffee table and read.

You might take a glance and put it down because it might not interest you unless you are a brain surgeon or want to know more about OCD and how it affects the brain.

I just wished that the authors would had gone more in depth and studied more on physical disabilities, such as Cerebral Palsy and the brain. Cerebral Palsy happens when there is a lack of oxygen to the brain and damaged that portion.

I have CP and my brain allows me to type with my feet, as I write this review, but other people with the same disability doesn't have the same abilities like myself. I hope that some day, these authors will do a study on disabilities and the brain and publish their findings.

The authors covered almost everything that is possible on this human organ that is so hard to understand, but they left out involuntary motor skills that is caused by trauma to the brain.

0 of 2 people found this review helpful