Though it’s a psychological subject, Mariano Sigman touched on a few interesting spiritual subjects in his TED speech. By analyzing the fossils of human thoughts (in ancient books), he discovered the multi-dimensional Space of Words.
He used the Space of Words methodology to analyse the history of introspection or self-realization. He mentions two peaks, the first around 400 BCE and the second at the time of St. Augustine. In our post The Axial Age in a Spiritual Light we came to the same conclusion. At that time religion went through a major shift, from God worship to illumination and self-realization. Now, we have a scientific proof – cool, isn’t it?
On a side note: it appears that Mariano Sigman holds onto the psychological tenet that the inner voice is an illusion or, worse, a symptom of mental disorder. Without the inner voice (not voices!) it’s impossible to meet the advanced challenges of self-realization.
The TED introduction:
Can the way you speak and write today predict your future mental state, even the onset of psychosis? In this fascinating talk, neuroscientist Mariano Sigman reflects on ancient Greece and the origins of introspection to investigate how our words hint at our inner lives and details a word-mapping algorithm that could predict the development of schizophrenia. “We may be seeing in the future a very different form of mental health,” Sigman says, “based on objective, quantitative and automated analysis of the words we write, of the words we say.”