Tuesday, February 2, 2010

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Asking Prof. Wiesel

Yesterday I had the opportunity of asking Prof. Torsten Wiesel, Nobel Laureate for Medicine in 1981, what we still do not yet know about visual perception. Prof. Wiesel pioneered the work on the neural basis of neural perception, having traced the pathway from the retina to the visual cortex. Every medical school in the world studies his work.

I don't recall the exact words, but his face lit up when he answered me. He said that his discovery is only a part of the puzzle. The brain is as complex as the universe itself, and, even if so many researches have been published on how it works, we still don't understand it enough.

Here were the highlights of the open forum:

A high school student asked him what he did with the Nobel prize money. Prof. Wiesel answered, "I used it for my daughter's education."

A man asked a really long question on the role played by science in the destruction of the world—or something like that. It was so long we didn't get the drift.  The professor simply said, "Thank you for that talk."

Dr. Wiesel referred to Gloria Arroyo as prime minister, not president. The brother from La Salle, who was hosting, had to correct him. "She's not the prime minister—at least, not yet."

It was a humbling experience for me and my classmates—being in the same room with an intellectual giant. But I was even amazed with the Lord, whose idea it was to give man the eyes and the brain in the first place.

2 comments:

  1. Thanks Lance for sharing these ideas to us who were not present there.

    ReplyDelete

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