Is hair an extension of the human nervous system?

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Is hair an extension of the human nervous system?

Postby Braininvat on April 5th, 2018, 12:36 pm 

OK, I am subject to the same forum rules as everyone, so this can be removed if members are overwhelmed by the wackiness...but it was fun considering this, and the way that good scientific method can go off the rails...

https://www.theindigenousamericans.com/2017/11/15/hair-extension-nervous-system-native-americans-keep-hair-long/

Happy trails!
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Re: Is hair an extension of the human nervous system?

Postby Watson on April 5th, 2018, 2:16 pm 

Here is story, almost word for word:

http://native-americanhistory.blogspot. ... m-why.html

,except for the role of Sally and her Dr. husband? Sounds more like the genesis of an urban legend? And I was already to go long.
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Re: Is hair an extension of the human nervous system?

Postby mitchellmckain on April 5th, 2018, 4:41 pm 

The only wacky thing about it is the title of this thread.

Are your glasses part of your nervous system because you cannot see other people without them?

Does hair play a role in our acquisition of information about the environment? ABSOLUTELY, I DOES!!! COME ON, I cannot believe you do not know this! The hairs on our skin are connected to nerves so we feel it when something disturbs them whether an insect or a breeze.

Ok, so this isn't the fine hair on our skin. But the fact is that our brain is tuned to getting information in a very particular way and thus when you completely alter the interface between ourselves and the environment whether by removing hair or even by changing our attire we can greatly damage the sensitive atunement to the environment which our brains have achieved in those very different circumstances. So yes, I find it quite believable that replacing head of freely flowing hair with a hard military helmet can remove some of our sensitivity to the environment.
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Re: Is hair an extension of the human nervous system?

Postby Watson on April 5th, 2018, 6:35 pm 

Exactly, which is why I was initially thinking there may be something to it. But how long does hair have to be to communicate information to the skin/scalp. And what type of information is gleaned from the longer hair. To say, "They could no longer access a ‘sixth sense’, their ‘intuition’ no longer was reliable, they could not ‘read’ subtle signs as well or access subtle extrasensory information."?? That seems like something I would question. Which I did, and I only found the exact same words presented in a slightly different format and they were on blogs. Even the initial link BiV offered had a questionable provenance, from what I could see, and appears to be a blog as well.
And yes the helmet would alter some sensitivity to the environment, but that was not the point of the story. The words were, "...when they received their required military haircuts, they could no longer ‘sense’ the enemy." Based on what neurological processes do you suppose hair would make this antenna for the sixth sense.
If you wish to speak for the validity of this story, it is your prerogative, but I think if you reread the story BiV provided, you may realize there is not much to the long hair, beyond fashion.
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Re: Is hair an extension of the human nervous system?

Postby BadgerJelly on April 5th, 2018, 10:29 pm 

I must be super intuitive ... especially my arse! Haha!
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Re: Is hair an extension of the human nervous system?

Postby mitchellmckain on April 5th, 2018, 11:08 pm 

Watson » April 5th, 2018, 5:35 pm wrote:Exactly, which is why I was initially thinking there may be something to it. But how long does hair have to be to communicate information to the skin/scalp. And what type of information is gleaned from the longer hair. To say, "They could no longer access a ‘sixth sense’, their ‘intuition’ no longer was reliable, they could not ‘read’ subtle signs as well or access subtle extrasensory information."?? That seems like something I would question. Which I did, and I only found the exact same words presented in a slightly different format and they were on blogs. Even the initial link BiV offered had a questionable provenance, from what I could see, and appears to be a blog as well.
And yes the helmet would alter some sensitivity to the environment, but that was not the point of the story. The words were, "...when they received their required military haircuts, they could no longer ‘sense’ the enemy." Based on what neurological processes do you suppose hair would make this antenna for the sixth sense.
If you wish to speak for the validity of this story, it is your prerogative, but I think if you reread the story BiV provided, you may realize there is not much to the long hair, beyond fashion.


Not inherently, no. That was not my point. The point was that you cannot change people and expect them to remain the same. If you treat people like playdo squeezed through molds and cookie cutters then why should be be surprised at the cookie cutter results? In fact, I think it highly likely that a great deal of their sensitivity has to do with being in tune with a particular environment in a particular area where they have spent a great deal of time and thus they are going to lose a lot of it just by moving them to an environment which is basically alien to them with different plant and animal life.
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Re: Is hair an extension of the human nervous system?

Postby Watson on April 5th, 2018, 11:24 pm 

Yes, I agree, but what does that have to do with long hair??

Never mind.

I did read in the comments following the story, from a Native American claiming the long hair adds to the follow of his spiritual or other personal energies. But then it is, or should be a story about these potential energies. Even if longer hair has an influence on these energies, the story is the energies, not the length of hair.
I still think it is just a wannabe urban legend, planted in a few blogs. There is nothing of substance, I that I can find.
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Re: Is hair an extension of the human nervous system?

Postby BadgerJelly on April 6th, 2018, 4:31 am 

No one actually considered the effect on the psychology of the individual? If you were to shave all my hair off it might, just might, make me feel a little different. If you were to shave a woman's hair off they may even break out in tears and not feel like themselves.

A one case study does nothing to tell us anything. It does open up the question for anyone wishing to investigate though.
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Re: Is hair an extension of the human nervous system?

Postby Watson on April 6th, 2018, 9:14 am 

First, I don't think this is a case study, and even calling it anecdotal may be a stretch. Despite pronouncements to the contrary, I think this is more of a yarn to be repeated around the camp fire.
But I have gone from long hair to crew cut on the shortest setting, and without a doubt, you do feel different. I would say you a more attune to the environment with respect to temperature and air movement. Even hearing may be sharper without a mat of hair covering the ears.
The more one thinks about this, the less credible it sounds.
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Re: Is hair an extension of the human nervous system?

Postby Braininvat on April 6th, 2018, 12:28 pm 

Yes, I posted it as an example of poor hypothesis formation. Instead of considering the possible mundane reasons a haircut might affect a person, the writer went straight for the hair-as-mystical-6th sense-antennae hypothesis.

Made me think of that film with George Clooney about the men who stare at goats.
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Re: Is hair an extension of the human nervous system?

Postby mitchellmckain on April 6th, 2018, 1:02 pm 

I guess I see it as the usual media hyperbole, hype, and distortion of the facts that you see in all reporting of scientific discovery. I suppose I am the glass-half-full kind of guy looking for what truth is their beneath the distortions.
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Re: Is hair an extension of the human nervous system?

Postby doogles on April 6th, 2018, 5:37 pm 

All the theories so far sound like the cat's whiskers to me.

Actually if there is more emotional sensitivity associated with long hair, then women should show more emotional sensitivity than men. (In general, they wear their hair longer in most cultures.)

Would you believe that Google Scholar brings up quite a few studies supporting this?

Nah, you would have to compare WITHIN sex differences between length of hair and emotional sensitivity. So far, only BETWEEN sex differences appear to have been studied.
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Re: Is hair an extension of the human nervous system?

Postby ralfcis on April 6th, 2018, 6:12 pm 

If the 5 senses are synonymous with the human nervous system then hair is absolutely necessary for 1 of those senses so the final answer is yes.
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Re: Is hair an extension of the human nervous system?

Postby Watson on April 8th, 2018, 10:12 pm 

And if the 5 senses are not? You'll have to explain how the "If" leads to a "final answer yes?"
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Re: Is hair an extension of the human nervous system?

Postby Watson on April 9th, 2018, 1:37 pm 

FYI-It may have been the clean look of the web site in the OP that added credibility to the story. It is 'Powered by Coinhive' which actually makes the story less credible. My concern looking into this was if it had hyjacked my PC for back ground mining when I'm not awre of it. I'm still not sure about that?

Coinhive offers a JavaScript miner for the Monero Blockchain (Why Monero?) that you can embed in your website. Your users run the miner directly in their Browser and mine XMR for you in turn for an ad-free experience, in-game currency or whatever incentives you can come up with. grant video streaming time; offer files ...
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