The endocrine system creates and processes hormonal signals. There are three different categories of messages.
- Individual to individual
- body part to body part
- cell to cell
Body part to body part signals are what is usually meant when we say ‘hormones’. The thalamus and hypothalamus are primarily involved, but so are other organs, like your adrenal glands on top of your kidneys. The nervous and endocrine systems are highly entertwined, much as the brain and mind are intertwined.
Cell to cell signals are pretty easy to understand. Those animations on the drug commercials for the latest happy pill do a good job showing uptake, inhibition, etc in synapses.
Now we come to the most interesting category. Individual to Individual signals are also called phermones. You know how ants find something, run back to home base, and the later ants retrace his steps and soon set up a highway to the food? That’s all done with phermones. You can simulate these things on computer, and people have. In fact, if you have the ants random-walk around, and upon encountering food, retrace their steps while laying down an attractive chemical, and other random ants honing in on the scent, this process will generate efficient trails to the food. Evolutionists might say, Aha! look at that random walk! But what they miss is that the random walk was merely a subcomponent in an elaborate, designed system.
Mammals also have phermones, not just bugs. When your dog lifts his leg on every tire on your car, he’s not just rusting your wheels, he’s signalling to other dogs. As for human phermones, there’s some evidence of them, for instance the McClintock Effect, which causes women’s menstrual cycles to synchronize. There have also been studies done where women smell mens’ t-shirts then rate their attractiveness. There’s some correlation between these things but it’s not sorted out. Don’t be fooled by those advertisements where you spend $100 to get some potent phermones that knock all the girls dead. If they knew how to make that kind of thing, do you think they’d sell it to you?
I wouldn’t. I’d be…too busy.