In 1996 Jill Bolte Taylor, a published and respected brain scientist suffered a massive stroke in the left hemisphere of her brain. “My Stroke of Insight” is her memoir that chronicles her firsthand experience of living through a stroke.
During her stroke, a blood vessel in Jill’s left hemisphere ruptured. As Jill’s left brain began to fill with blood her use of logical, analytical functions faded away. She tried using the phone to call for help, but lost the ability understand language after she dialed the number. As her left hemisphere shut down further she had no sense of time or where her body ended and space began. She describes the lost functionality of her left brain as a euphoric and spiritual experience.
It took eight years before Jill was fully recovered. During her recovery, she retained the use of her right hemisphere, the intuitive side of the brain. She felt at one with the universe and sensed things on an energetic level. Her unique perspective as a brain scientist observing the inner workings of her own mind was fascinating. I recommend this book to anyone wanting to explore the idea that we are so much more than our brains.
Jill Bolte Taylor’s TED talk about her stroke:
Her segment on Oprah:
And her “Super Soul” podcast episode with Oprah.
“My Stroke of Insight” is also available on audible– my favorite way to “read”.