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Word Count: 2,124
Musical Hormones Music has well established psychological effects including the induction and modification of cognitive states moods and emotions Were it not so then marches would be played as readily at bedtime as at the half time of football games dirges would grace weddings lullabies would be heard at parades and Gregorian chant would bombard our ears in supermarkets Many people think that psychology is one thing but physiology is another thing There is the mind and there is the body This common dualist assumption scores high on our own psychological comfort meters It is always nice when common sense matches scientific reality When that happens we feel that we have a good grasp of things and that an issue has been settled Of course the dualist position has a problem with the question of just how music affects our private mental lives And just where is it that our private mental lives live anyway But mind body dualism has been the dominant belief in the history of the world Can so many people over so long a time be wrong Certainly Yes the mind is still mysterious But it has proven impossible to toss away the brain and still keep the mind By mind I refer to our everyday mental experiences not to the soul or similar formulations I would not claim that science provides the only type of knowledge or understanding possible Only that what we consider to be our normal run of the mill daily mental experiences necessarily are a product of our brain function The evidence quite overwhelming cannot all be reviewed here But a few examples When our level of consciousness changes from waking to sleeping the electrical activity of our brains changes as well If one induces a sleeping pattern in the brain by drugs or other means the behavior goes along In fact most drugs that alter our experiences perceptions moods general state
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