Your brain's Wi-Fi controls your 'gut feeling', says psychotherapy professor

brains are somehow interconnected through a type of ‘Wi-Fi’ Pixabay

Your child might have been taught in class that humans are the most intelligent species on earth. Now, let the kid also know about a claim, made by a professor, about human brains and how they are somehow interconnected through a type of 'Wi-Fi', which helps in collecting more information about other people.

Even though it sounds weird, the Clinical Professor of Psychotherapy Prof Digby Tantum from the University of Sheffield, believes that language is a medium as well as a part of the communication process.

But it is our brain which plays the lead role in collecting tiny micro-signals that helps a person to know what the other one is thinking. According to The Telegraph, Prof Tantum has named this process as 'The Interbrain' in a book where the theory is described.

People often have a gut feeling about a person's behaviour or a particular situation but fail to explain why. Maybe that is the reason why people struggle to communicate with the other individual while travelling in a crowded bus or train. In such cases, too much of subliminal information restricts the info collection process.

Professor Digby Tantam
Professor Digby Tantam TheResearchAutism/ YouTube grab

Prof Tantum said that we can understand whether the other person is paying attention or not, including their exact emotions at the same time. He also mentioned that the procedure is based on the "direct connection between our brains and other people's and between their brain and ours. I call this the interbrain."

According to the researcher, this interbrain info exchange process has its own advantages. One of them is that "the connection exists in the background. We take it for granted unless it is brought to the surface of our minds."

On the other hand, while talking about autistic individuals, who have a very little or no interbrain connection ability, Prof Tantum said, "They are often able to pick up or learn what expressions mean and yet that doesn't seem to solve the problem of that lack of human connection."

He also believes that the interbrain communication process may happen as an 'inadvertent leak', which may be linked to one of our five senses, that is the smell.

Prof Tantum explained that what we see through our eyes "gets carried to the back of the brain for processing but the receptors in the nose contact a thin extrusion of the brain tissue directly."

In addition to that, he said, "The area of the brain that is closest to the nose is the orbitofrontal cortex (OFC)", which is involved in the cognitive processing of decision-making and it might be located there because most of the basic communication happens via smell.

Even though, according to Prof Tantum, this communication process is the reason why people turn religious, it might also explain why some people commit a crime. He also mentioned that feelings like hate, grudge, anger restrict the process of interbrain and make the culprit unsympathetic to the victim.

In the same vein, he also mentioned about the barrier of the internet, which is damaging the process of interbrain communication and making humans artificial. This might be another reason why people around us have become more complicated and introverts, he said.

This article was first published on January 7, 2018