Humans use only 0.00000001% of their Brain!
… and therefore we are more stupid than chickens!
Do you know this myth? It’s pseudoscience! Far away from the truth!
How originated this myth of the 10 percent of brain?
One possible origin is the reserve energy theories by Harvard psychologists William James and Boris Sidis in the 1890s who tested the theory in the accelerated raising of child prodigy William Sidis to effect an adulthood IQ of 250–300; thus William James told audiences that people only meet a fraction of their full mental potential, which is a plausible claim. In 1936, American writer Lowell Thomas summarized this idea (in a foreword to Dale Carnegie’s How to Win Friends and Influence People) by adding a falsely precise percentage: “Professor William James of Harvard used to say that the average man develops only ten per cent of his latent mental ability.”
According to a related origin story, the 10% myth most likely arose from a misunderstanding (or misrepresentation) of neurological research in the late 19th century or early 20th century. For example, the functions of many brain regions (especially in the cerebral cortex) are complex enough that the effects of damage are subtle, leading early neurologists to wonder what these regions did. The brain was also discovered to consist mostly of glial cells, which seemed to have very minor functions. Separately, some early neuroscientists used the figure of about 10% to refer to the proportion of neurons in the brain that fire at any given time or to refer to percentage of the brain’s functions that had been mapped at the time (accounts differ). Dr. James W. Kalat, author of the textbook Biological Psychology, points out that neuroscientists in the 1930s knew about the large number of “local” neurons in the brain. The misunderstanding of the function of local neurons may have led to the 10% myth. Indeed, it is easy to imagine that the myth propagated simply by a truncation of the statement that “humans use 10% of their brains at any given time.”
Refutation of the Myth
Neurologist Barry Gordon describes the myth as laughably false, adding, “we use virtually every part of the brain, and that [most of] the brain is active almost all the time“.
In the October 27, 2010 episode of MythBusters, the hosts used magnetoencephalography and functional magnetic resonance imaging to scan the brain of someone taking a complicated mental task. Finding that well over 10% was active at once, they declared the myth “busted“.
Other misconceptions about the brain
- Mental abilities are not absolutely separated into the left and right cerebral hemispheres of the brain. Some mental functions such as speech and language (cf. Broca’s area, Wernicke’s area) tend to activate one hemisphere of the brain more than the other, in some kinds of tasks. If one hemisphere is damaged at a very early age, these functions can often be recovered in part or even in full by the other hemisphere (see neuroplasticity). Other abilities such as motor control, memory, and general reasoning are served equally by the two hemispheres.
- Until recently medical experts believed that humans were born with all of the brain cells they would ever have. We now know that new neurons can be created in the postnatal brain. Researchers have observed adult neurogenesis in avians, Old World Primates, and humans. Adults of these species retain multipotent neural stem cells in the subventricular zone of the lateral ventricles and subgranular zone of the dentate gyrus. The newborn neurons generated in these areas migrate to the olfactory bulb and the dentate gyrus, respectively, and are believed to integrate into existing neural circuits. The function and physiological significance of adult-born neurons remains unclear. Some studies have suggested that post-natal neurogenesis also occurs in the neocortex, an idea that is disputed.
The question arise why so many people have such a “low awareness” if they use more than 10 percent of their brains? Why have so many people problems to understand complex concepts, scientific theories, mathematical problems, and so on?
Maybe most part of our awareness is not used properly. Imagine if you don’t know the whole truth about a subject, would you then be able to understand it and use it to it’s full potential? And this Ladies and Gentlemen is the case, we are living in a world based on illusions and therefore even if we use 100 percent of our brain, we cannot use it to it’s real full potential.