Simon Lewis: Don’t take consciousness for granted

Born in London, Simon Lewis is a film and television producer and author. After earning law degrees from Christ’s College Cambridge and Boalt Hall, Berkeley, Lewis moved to Los Angeles, where his Hollywood experience includes managing writers, directors and stars, as well as producing Look Who’s Talking, critically acclaimed films such as The Chocolate War, the Emmy-winning international co-production for HBO and ITV Central A Month of Sundays (Age Old Friends), and variety specials starring Howie Mandel.

He’s the author of Rise and Shine, a memoir that uses his personal story — of recovery from coma — to illustrate deep and universal insights about consciousness itself. An acclaimed author, speaker and commentator, Lewis uses creative visualizations that fuse cutting-edge medicine, scientific research and digital art to illustrate solutions to society’s most pressing problem: the erosion of consciousness and need for solutions to nurture and grow our minds through cognitive and other therapies.

An advocate for change in how we educate our children and ourselves, he says that we must not take our consciousness for granted, but use specific tools to screen and detect learning weaknesses and prevent academic failure. Bridge the gap from our potential mind toward our actual mind and maximize [...] continue the story

Jill Bolte Taylor’s stroke of insight

One morning, a blood vessel in Jill Bolte Taylor’s brain exploded. As a brain scientist, she realized she had a ringside seat to her own stroke. She watched as her brain functions shut down one by one: motion, speech, memory, self-awareness …

Amazed to find herself alive, Taylor spent eight years recovering her ability to think, walk and talk. She has become a spokesperson for stroke recovery and for the possibility of coming back from brain injury stronger than before. In her case, although the stroke damaged the left side of her brain, her recovery unleashed a torrent of creative energy from her right. From her home base in Indiana, she now travels the country on behalf of the Harvard Brain Bank as the “Singin’ Scientist.” “How many brain scientists have been able to study the brain from the inside out? I’ve gotten as much out of this experience of losing my left mind as I have in my entire academic career.”

Jill Bolte Taylor

Ed Gavagan: A story about knots and surgeons

Today’s talk is about surviving a brutal attack, and the extraordinary skill of the surgeons who saved Ed Gavagan’s life. It’s a remarkable story, but there is much more to it. Ed originally told part of the story at The Moth, a wonderful group devoted to true stories, told live on stage. In many ways The Moth is similar to TED — at TED people get on stage to talk about their ideas, at The Moth they’re invited on stage to share a true, personal story from their lives.

Ed’s story has been legendary at The Moth. For years he worked with the artistic team to develop the story, and has told it in several pieces which add up the whole picture (watch the video embedded below). Below, we asked The Moth’s artistic director, Catherine Burns, to tell us about working with Ed, and how knowing him has enabled unexpected connections.

I first met Ed Gavagan in 2007. I was attending a Moth StorySLAM, one of our open storytelling competitions, and he was one of the last names picked. Each event has a theme, and the theme that night was “Rescue”. He told a story that has now become a Moth classic, [...] continue the story

Giles Duley: When a reporter becomes the story

Published on Mar 21, 2012 Giles Duley Photographer

Giles was a photographer who, some years ago, tired of celebrity photoshoots and the attendant egos and tantrums that often accompanied them. He flung his camera on the photoshoot bed and it bounced out the window into the streets of SoHo, London. At that point he decided to change course and dedicated himself to using his camera to “tell unheard stories of those caught in conflict and economic hardship around the world.” His work took him to Sudan, Angola, Ukraine and Bangladesh, among other places. Early in 2011, on assignment in Afghanistan, Duley stepped on a landmine. Despite the fact that the horrific accident left Duley a triple amputee, he continues to dedicate his life to telling stories through photography .Though he became the story, the real story is his photographs. “Do you ever have one of those mornings, when you just can’t be bothered to put your legs on? ” – @gilesduley

Aimee Mullins at TEDMED 2009

Record breaking athlete Aimee Mullins delivers an outstanding talk that properly redefines the word ‘disabled’.

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