Zen drawing: a neuropsychological view

November 9, 2011 in Blog bericht, pencil drawing, Post on Psychology and science by admin

It was as early as 1979 that Betty Edwards, an American art teacher, published her book ‘ Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain’. She used findings of brain research done by Roger Sperry and others, who found in their studies on split-brain patients, that the two hemispheres of the brain have different functions.
For example, our left hemisphere is involved in our rational and linear thinking, focuses on details and ‘thinks’ in language. Our right hemisphere on the other hand, is involved in perceiving complex visual information as well as other information from our sensory organs, and combines this information to one experience, the experience of the moment.
They also found that in our right hemisphere there is no inner chatter and we experience inner peace and silence, not unlike the qualities and the effects that, for example, Buddhist look for when in meditation.

Edwards showed in her book, that everyone can learn how to draw realistically by involving their right hemisphere when performing any drawing task. When reading Edwards book, I asked myself if our Ego is also located in our left hemisphere. I searched the internet and found this very interesting story by Dr. Jill Bolte Taylor on YouTube:

I have red her book ‘My stroke of Insight’, and if you like to learn more about our brain and the way we perceive reality, I can strongly recommend it. In my opinion any kind of drawing and especially Zen drawing, can help you experience your right hemisphere consciousness. All you have to do is ‘step aside’, literally take ‘a step’ from left to right.
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