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How to Raise Your I.Q.
By T. Ray Rachels
The LA Times reported recently on a controlled laboratory study done with mice to determine what effect certain kinds of music would have on their ability to think and solve complex problems.
Researchers placed the mice at the entrance to a maze, with cheese as the prize at the exit, and timed as to how long it took them to get through the maze to the cheese, with no music playing. Average time was 5 minutes.
Researchers then played heavy metal music as the mice negotiated their way through the maze. Average time was 37.5 minutes.
Then they played classical music under the same conditions. Average time was 1 1/2 minutes. The wide variance in average time seems incredible, but that was their report.
The scientists doing the experiment concluded the classical music, with its richness and complex scores, created a higher level of thinking for the mice — it raised their I.Q. — and enhanced their ability to think and solve complex problems. While at the same time, heavy metal music dulled their senses and short-circuited their reasoning powers. Mozart and Beethoven beat out Metallica and Megadeth! It was a near shut out.
It is not my intention, necessarily, to trash (??) one kind of music over another. For one thing, I don’t listen to, nor do I understand heavy metal.” But I do listen to classical. And, if the researchers found clearer thinking going on, even in mice, when one set of music factors were measured against another, then I’m interested in knowing more.
But, then, let me put it into a different context and draw another parallel. If, for instance, our mind is the battleground for clear thinking, as well as about seeing and solving the complexities of this maze called life, then I want to experience the most redeeming music possible to help guide me as I make choices en route to life’s richest prize! How about you?
God’s Word is that redeeming music. The eloquence, lift, miraculous clarity, and guiding power for our minds increase our grasp on ultimate reality. The Scriptures sound out its notes and point us to the Way.
It is a great Way, a life-changing Way, and its ability to transform our minds from spiritual dullards to spiritually enlightened Christ-followers brings hope for us all.
“The mind of sinful man is death, but the mind controlled by the spirit is life and peace; the sinful mind is hostile to God” (Romans 8:6,7, NIV).
“Those who trust God's action in them find that God's Spirit is in them — living and breathing God! Obsession with self in these matters is a dead end; attention to God leads us out into the open, into a spacious, free life” (Romans 8:6,7, THE MESSAGE).
“Do not conform any longer to the patterns of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is – his good, pleasing and perfect will” (Romans 12:1,2, NIV).
“So here's what I want you to do, God helping you: Take your everyday, ordinary life — your sleeping, eating, going-to-work, and walking-around life — and place it before God as an offering. Embracing what God does for you is the best thing you can do for Him. Don't become so well-adjusted to your culture that you fit into it without even thinking. Instead, fix your attention on God. You'll be changed from the inside out. Readily recognize what he wants from you, and quickly respond to it. Unlike the culture around you, always dragging you down to its level of immaturity, God brings the best out of you, develops well-formed maturity in you” (Romans 12:1,2, THE MESSAGE).
“You will keep in perfect peace him whose mind is steadfast, because he trusts in you.” (Isaiah 26:3, NIV)
“People with their minds set on you, you keep completely whole, steady on their feet, because they keep at it and don't quit” (Isaiah 26:3, THE MESSAGE).
“Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things” (Colossians 3:2, NIV).
“Don't shuffle along, eyes to the ground, absorbed with the things right in front of you. Look up, and be alert to what is going on around Christ — that's where the action is. See things from his perspective” (Colossians 3:2, THE MESSAGE).
Mind you, that’s a good Word!
T. Ray Rachels, district superintendent, Southern California District of the Assemblies of God, Irvine, California.