9. Sing a new song

The growth of our brain when we’re born—as flush and full as an Amazonian jungle until we reach young adulthood—was thought to be followed by a period of constant death. As if the rainfall has stopped, global warming has set in, the wind has increased, the jungle is subjected to the elements, and then tragically declines into a desert wasteland and petrified forest. This original belief after Cajal approved the Neuron Doctrine occurred for obvious reasons. Our brain does get smaller as we age, particularly our cortex, and the complete jungle was considered to have enough room for a lifetime of experience.

However, new glial research has shown the brain is more like a living jungle throughout our lifetime than originally thought—with ...

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