One of the main connections between nervous system and endocrine system is the hypothalamus, also called the neuroendocrine integration. Hypothalamus as such is not counted as one of the endocrine glands and can therefore not be found at picture 32 above. However, it is so closely related and even physically connected to the pituitary gland, that it pretty much can be understood as one and the same organ in one and the same physical location.
The pituitary gland is well known for having it´s own real seat, physically. A saddle that is, and a rather sophisticated one, as it is called the Turkish saddle, sella turcica1; see the black arrow at picture below. It is carved into one of the most special bones in the head: The sphenoid bone2.
The following picture to the left shows the sphenoid bone with it´s wings extending behind the eyes and joining the temporal and zygomatic bones at both sides.
Mythology and heraldic
This structure – the sphenoid bone and the complex of the pituitary gland and the hypothalamus – in combination may be, what inspired Egyptian priests and artists, when they created the image of the Winged Sun or the Winged Disk, as it is found for instance in Thebes3.
Looking at the face at the picture at the top you can see the wings and the seat of that, which bridges the spirit world and the physical world in the human body.
The wings of the sphenoid bone may have played a role in the development of the ancient character Mercury4, the god for traders and thieves. And by the way other sophisticated headgear throughout the Middle Ages.
From the ancient god up through the times the wings actually became more or less synonymous with an eagle, as can be seen at some of the helmets5. This same eagle also found it´s way into the heraldic6.
As late as 1905 a quite important figure portrayed himself with a very impressive hat, wearing a white eagle.
Even his moustache carries the features of the sphenoid bone! The Germain Kaiser Wilhelm II7 was, I presume, the last to wear the eagle helmet.
For the sake of continuity we can pose three eagles, that have changed the course of history over the last two millennia: The Roman, the Germain and the US. During the Second World War the German and the US eagles fought as opponents. See picture below.
We could go on and mention companies like Chrysler, Mini, Aston Martin, Bentley and Harley-Davidson, which all have the winged sun in their logos.
But maybe it has become perfectly clear by now, just how important this connection between the physical body and the spirit has been throughout all times. And more surprisingly, even today in companies, for entire countries and for warfare, not the least.
Keep in mind, these organisations and state institutions are not regarded as religious in any way, shape or form! See picture 38.
Hypothalamus is part of the limbic brain. The limbic system has made the journey from the creation of the reptiles, and as such it entails and controls the functions, that we ascribe to animals. Instincts and impulses to sleep, eat, mate, fight or flee. Or in other words: Stress, growth and reproduction.
An impulse of a Paralysis is transmitted through the dorsal vagus via relays to the hypothalamus. From there it is transmitted further on to the pituitary gland. Here signal hormones are created on the fly, though some reserves are held in store.
1 Pituitary gland
Though the pituitary gland often is called the master, we now may assume, that actually the hypothalamus has a great deal to say. Maybe that is not such a big deal.
Trying to connect the dots here is not easy. Actually some of the pituitary gland´s processes are controlled by the pineal gland; so much for the “Master”!
The next interesting thing is, that different glands regulate different aspects of the same processes in the body. Hence the same symptom may originate in more glands or even in their cooperation.
On demand from the hypothalamus the pituitary gland reduces or increases the amount of more than a handful of distinct different hormones. They control processes as different as:
- Blood pressure
- Aspects of pregnancy and birth and stimulation of uterus
- Milk production
- Sex organs
- Thyroid gland
- Food to energy
- Water and osmolarity regulation
- Reabsorption of water by the kidneys
- Pain relief