340 of 356 people found the following review helpful
on November 6, 2012
This is an incredibly written book on the most important topic in all of our lives, "The Human Brain." As, the book points out if you don't use your brain, it will use you! The book gives you tools you can use right away.
Most importantly it's written by two brilliant and forward thinking scholars. The first being, Deepak Chopra, M.D. a New York Time best-selling author and author of numerous books who's known around the world for his work on the brain, mind-body connection, consciousness, spirituality, and Quantum Physics.The second, Dr. Rudolph E. Tanzi a Harvard Professor who was a pioneer in Alzheimer's research and being one of the co-discoverers of the first Alzheimer's disease gene.
As quoted in the book "Every day you step into the invisible firestorm of electrical and chemical activity that is the brain's environment. You act as leader, inventor, teacher, and user of your brain, all at once.
As leader, you hand out the day's orders to your brain.
As inventor, you create new pathways and connections inside your brain that didn't exist yesterday.
As teacher, you train your brain to learn new skills.
As user, you are responsible for keeping your brain in good working order."
I have to say that this one is greatest books I've read on the topic of the brain because the two authors go extremely in-depth into the working of the brain, and they also give you tools that you can implement into your life today.
It's broken up into three parts. Here's a very basic summary.
Part 1 DEVELOPING YOU GREATEST GIFT
Which goes into great detail about the latest advancements in science that explain how the brain functions. It also talks about the five myths of the brain.
Part 2: MAKING REALITY
This part gives you information and knowledge to literally work on changing your brain from negatives states of mind to positive states of mind.
Part 3:MYSTERY AND PROMISE
I thoroughly enjoyed this part because its goes into the biggest idea in all of science. Something to which I'm fascinating with, the question being "How does this three pound brain produce consciousness?"
I think this is an incredible book that anyone can use to increase more positive states of mind. I've read hundreds of books on the brain and I think this one is one of the best because it gives you tools on how to work on changing your brain immediately.
108 of 115 people found the following review helpful
on November 27, 2012
Such a hopeful book for people like me who are aging, but also good for younger folks. Something I think younger mothers will love. Kids should be memorizing, memorizing, memorizing (as well as all the other stuff they do in school, of course). It helps develop the brain. Tanzi (PhD) is a cutting edge experimental neurologist with boundless curiosity. Chopra (MD) is a knowledgeable gifted teacher who clearly communicates the practical applications of Tanzi's discoveries. The brain's plasticity means we can repair damage to it by THINKING as well as DOING.
Some concepts I gleaned from my reading so far.....
* Alzheimers can be reversed (depending on how advanced it is when the victim begins trying).
* music lessons, exercise, other repetitive physical activity benefits the brain,
* keeping busy and interested in life is essential to brain health,
* why keeping a pet can save your life,
* the many benefits of cultivating your memory,
* indulging your passion increases brain power,
* mothers get smarter as they manage unpredictable households.
all confirmed by Tanzi's studies and explained by Chopra, the master teacher.
I think this book is specially important for managing the education of children and enabling older folks determined to protect their brains from further decline (it's never too late to start). If you don't have time to read this book, find somebody who has and pick their brains. It'll be good for both of you.
This is a must reread now and then to keep the information fresh in my mind (until the next edition comes out). One of this year's more important and inspiring books.
31 of 33 people found the following review helpful
on September 10, 2013
At present, have experienced crises that caused emotional and physical pain off the scale, as well as brain functioning in the below normal range. Being an intelligent individual, was looking for a way to heal my brain, get it to work well again. Had tried several medications, did not do well on them, too many side effects. Was experiencing physical pain off the scale every day from stress and the crises I had gone through. I now have no physical pain related to stress -- zero. In a few short weeks, have seen improvement in memory and in all negative emotions associated with reaction to crises. I will never be the same -- in a very good way. With the instruction in this book, anticipate that not only will I return to normal for me, which is well above average brain function, but also my new normal will exceed my previous one. From instruction in this book, I have already been able to learn and accomplish new things I did not have skill to do before. This is new information just learned from studies in the recent past, very valuable to all of us as adults, as well as to parents who want to teach their children newly learned ways to make their brains work for them. Rarely have I taken time to review a book I have read, but this one has brought about so many positive results in such a short amount of time that I wanted to say, "Thank you, Dr. Tanzi, for passing this priceless information along to us."
110 of 134 people found the following review helpful
Bestselling author and Physician Deepak Chopra and Harvard Professor Rudolph E. Tansi, combine their wisdom and knowledge to deliver an interesting, easy-to-read guide on how to use your brain, instead of allowing your brain to use you. Through extensive research, the authors present findings on how to achieve health, spiritual growth, and happiness. In addition, the medical experts explain their findings on how the brain can be taught to reach far beyond its capabilities, and limitations. In conclusion, the authors offer important information on what we were taught in the past, and new evidence through research of what we learned in present time. The interesting topics discussed are self-awareness, conscious intention, spiritual insights, and much more. Furthermore, fascinating findings are presented on anxiety, obesity, and depression. Overall, 'Super Brain' is interesting, educational, and enjoyable. Highly Recommended!
33 of 39 people found the following review helpful
on December 2, 2012
First I read it on Kindle...now I have the book, highlighting as I go...so much to learn about our mind/brain connections.
With an older sister and a younger sister (both) with severe dementia....I HAD to get this book, right? I am going to share it with my friends and family...a lecture; after I finish it for the 3rd time; well maybe just a book review. Highly recommend it. Also watched Rudy Tanzi introduce it on PBS TV and took more notes. I am nearly 73 and do water aerobics 6 times a week. Exercise, sleep, eat, socialize, quit worrying...it is all in the book.
83 of 106 people found the following review helpful
on December 27, 2012
I received this book through the Goodreads First Reads Giveaway. I was excited to win and receive it and looked forward to reading it. I have read other works of Deepak Chopra and am fascinated by the science of brain plasticity. A neurosurgeon and a mind-body doctor with a gift for speaking in plain language? Seemed like a dream come true.
Why one star? This book was so repetitive as to be almost insulting. It bounced all over the place alternating overly-technical information with overly simplistic, less-than-entry-level knowledge that I am certain neither esteemed doctor wrote. It felt as though both doctors had written blurbs (perhaps as part of their research) in their individual fields, and then some ghost writer with little actual knowledge of EITHER field filled in a bunch of self-help book, quasi-spiritual psychobabble to turn it into a book. I had to force myself to finish it, searching for the little golden nuggets buried in the psychobabble.
This field is so important, so cutting edge that we NEED somebody who can explain it AND keep it motivational and interesting. This book is not it. For now, I'll stick with the PBS Alan Alda special on brain plasticity from Scientific American. Sorry :-(
69 of 92 people found the following review helpful
on December 2, 2012
After a couple of hours on my Kindle, I returned this book, and I use the word "book" very loosely here. To start, the first few pages are shameless advertising for Chopra's previous books. I bought this book based on Dr. Tanzi's credentials, PhD and Harvard professor and, hence, I expected state of the art research work to support some ground breaking new understanding of the human brain. Instead, I read page after page of simplistic philosophical old ideas. I am so disappointed that in the year 2012 we still have such a non-scientific "book". If you are interested in philosophy, this book is for you. On the other hand, if you are interested in the latest scientific discoveries in brain functions then save your time and money. I have never returned a book in my life, but this one is my first.
16 of 20 people found the following review helpful
on February 16, 2014
I'm sorry I bought this book. Once in a while as I read it I would encounter a rare tantalizing tidbit that made me think maybe the book will get better. But a few pages further I would realize, no, this book really is as bad as I thought and it's not getting any better.
The book is full of stupid over simplifications, such as "Your brain is endlessly adaptable." (page 5) No, I'm sorry, there is an end to how adaptable the human brain is. It is not endless, and saying such is clearly meant only to entertain the most simple-minded reader.
There are precious few actionable suggestions in this book. For example, page 49 has a list entitled "How to be Adaptable" which contains chestnuts like "When the old stresses are triggered, walk away." What does that even mean? How can I do that? How do I identify an old stress? If it's a new stress, should I not walk away?
Then there's the simple fact that no one ever proof-read this book. For example, page 39 contains "When a cheetah attacks a gazelle, it panics and fights for its life." Grammatically, "it" must refer to the cheetah, but I suspect the authors meant the gazelle panics. But clearly a gazelle does not panic and in fact doesn't fight; it runs. The whole sentence is meaningless, and I have no idea what the authors are trying to convey.
If you read this book using even a tiny fraction of your brain, you'll quickly see that there's nothing here. It's a bunch of silly feel-good prattle put on paper.
Sometimes you can judge a book by its cover. After I realized how bad this book is, I looked at the cover to see how I got conned into buying it. I hadn't noticed it before but the cover has atomic electron orbit graphics on it: the ultimate symbol of unfathomable power and mystery - if you live in the 1950s that is. That should be your first clue that this book is not worth your time.
40 of 53 people found the following review helpful
on February 18, 2013
Unfortunately, this is just another "HOW TO" book that gives the impression of presenting fresh ideas about the power of the brain that can make your life better. However, in reality, the book offers nothing more than a regurgitation of collected ideas that have already been thoroughly covered in many other publications and films regarding the subject matter. In my opinion, the book is poorly written and is extremely boring; its apparent focus on the power of positive thinking, meditation, et cetera, roams the path of religion that has nothing to do with real science. Furthermore, the authors fail to take into account the subtle influence the quantum world could have on a person's tendencies to behave in a certain way, under certain conditions, and in a variety of circumstances, which could make "free will" illusory and not necessarily or substantially subject to significant modification by the so-called "SUPER BRAIN".... In other words, e.g, you could practice the art of positive thinking and engage in cogitating the workings/functions of the brain until you're blue in the face, but they may not alter your genetically-determined self and all it implies. I expected to read about a riveting or startling discovery, especially considering the book's high selling price (nearly $30.00), but what I received turned out to be far from my expectation. The authors may have done their best, but quite honestly, their book doesn't deserve more than a one-star rating. For all of these reasons, I think "SUPER BRAIN" has been a waste of my money and time, and would not recommend it to anyone.
50 of 68 people found the following review helpful
on December 23, 2012
The book pretends to be a "manual for the brain" and is full of common sense advice like"try new things".
It the uses anecdotal evidence for may of its most important statement such as "prevent Alzheimers by exercising your brain", which is far from proven.
For me the most basic flaw is that they make an emphatic distinction between "Me, my consciousness" and "the brain".
It is never clear where "Me" resides; they make a point to say it is not part of the brain.
It all comes from both authors' acceptance of Buddhist and other mythical teachings.
They try (unsuccessfully, for me) to prove their point by a mixture of invalid logic, inappropriate similes, and anecdotal evidence.
If you are looking for a self-help book on a very basic level, it is that;
if you are looking for a state-of the-science update you will be disappointed.Super Brain