By supplying more of whatever amino acids are necessary, integrative medical practitioners have found a way to boost these ‘happy chemicals’.
Hormones and neurotransmitters are the chemical messengers that circulate around the body whenever we experience an emotion. While no one has finally identified which chemicals are associated with which emotion, there is a general understanding that each emotion is associated with a different combination of chemicals. Many, if not most, medical scientists believe that our emotional states are controlled first by chemicals and then by conscious feedback. Many textbooks of medicine state that we experience emotions as a result of the neurotransmitters that are inhibited or excited by the brain. This suggests that we are the brain, and the brain releases the neurotransmitter that creates the emotions we experience. The above theory is supported by the facts that drugs can alter states of mind and emotions, biochemical imbalances can cause abnormal emotions, factors ranging from feelings to brain damage can alter the state of consciousness and affect emotional responses, and stimulating brain tissue can activate memory and emotions.
For all the above reasons most scientists believe that emotions are chemical and that they can be manipulated with other chemicals. This will seem a strange idea to those with any self-awareness.
Our actual experience is that thought stimulates an emotion. Does the brain then have an independent existence and think, or does the ‘I’ use the brain to think with? The ‘I’ can also be called the Soul or consciousness. I will write about this controversy again, but please think about this fundamental question. Are you a brain that can think independently or a Soul that uses the brain to think?
A whole range of chemicals at the physical level of body function are concerned with happiness and good feelings. These chemicals, which include neurotransmitters carrying messages across nerve ends and hormones with a more widespread effect on the body, can be supported by a range of natural products. Clearly the way we think about the world and ourselves influences our emotional responses and the chemicals activated in our bodies. Whether the brain starts the ball rolling or it is initiated by ‘something else’ such as consciousness, Soul or even another system outside the chemical/anatomical body is still very open to debate. Check your own experience and let us know what you think.