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disrupter
12-16-2007, 01:07 AM
On Consciousness: Impressions

I have a sort of impression that consciousness is some kind of aggregate quorum/threshold where little independent constituents are somehow grouped, collected [forced?] into a quasi-coherent configuration/state.
Like some system of floating ping-pong balls in an active river where they are grasped, collected & held & at some point they reach some critical mass where the [weird?] state of consciousness is achieved.
Like collecting some gaseous constituent from the bloodstream & when there is some threshold quorum these independent elements are forced together into some [maybe monopolar?] unstable, dynamic coherency.
Perhaps achieving some kind electro-polar charge state?

Some scattered, dynamic, independent elements are somehow forced or balanced into a single [temporary] union. When this energy[resource?] using state has exhausted sustainability, then some release of sleep occurs where either recollection or recharge or something goes on until an other round/session of consciousness can be achieved.

I might even guess that in a healthy human [or other conscious creatures] that consciousness itself may be difficult to avoid almost. Obviously in comatose patients they no longer, for unknown reasons, seem to have the 'inevitable' aspects of the mechanism or system. Whether or not subtle intermittent coherencies still exist i will guess is variant from patient to patient & during different [intermittent?] intervals for each patient.

It just seems like some dynamic collective aggregation which sort of periodically is achievable, but for most people some re-charge period of sleep or rest is needed.
I might be interesting to examine people who need very little or no sleep & compare them to other more regular sleepers. Might be interesting to see if their [group] comparative states of consciousness are close to identical or if they might be slightly variant from one another.

I was also thinking that people who can go without sleep might be dynamically [real-time] gathering additional constituents of consciousness even as they loose some of them. Like a chain or aggregate, where as they loose them on one end they are real-time adding to them on the other.
Whereas people who need sleep either can't do this real-time accrual of constituents or at least not in sufficient quantity or speed to sustain consciousness.

Also i was wondering if the quality of sleep, its depth perhaps might cast a different color or quality to consciousness. ie. people can stay conscious over sustained periods, but perhaps the quality of consciousness is necessarily different [or not] from those who don't/can't.

Bill
12-16-2007, 03:00 AM
I always kind of liked the definition of consciousness given in that crazy book "The Origin of Consciousness in the Breakdown of the Bicameral Mind".

"Conciousness consists of a metaphored "I" imagined in an analog world".

The idea is that the trick of consciousness, as we have it today, was perfected some 5-4 thousand years ago, and it consists of being able to hold an accurate 'analog' image of the world in our heads, and imagine ourselves as moving around in it.

Basically, being able to "see" ourselves in our imagination. And simulate what would happen if we did this or did that, in our imaginary copy of reality.

So, we can imagine ourselves walking up and sticking out hand in a moving fan - and imagine that it would hurt - giving ourselves the "consciousness" we need to avoid having to repeat basic mistakes over and over.

It sounds like you are talking about some of the quantum consciousness ideas.

Interesting thoughts.

I wonder how your consciousness constructed those thoughts, ha ha ha.

disrupter
12-16-2007, 05:36 AM
the old questions,
am i the observer, the actor, the calculator?

we [i] don't really [seem to?] do all of them at once. One's focus shifts around. Thinking of the past [or future] i am less cognizant of the present stimuli. When i focus on immediate stimuli, i am not focused on the past or future or alternatively drifting in my imagination. Additionally i may get caught up in thinking about something in the 'real' world which i suppose is my imaginary realm, but with a whole set of constraints upon it.
All these sets of constraints for any number of realms,
Mathematics, Social [psychological?] interactions, physical/mechanical & others, all with a set of constraining parameters.

I think you are referring to 'world modeling'.
the internal synthetic configuration [machine?] that describes and even allows some pseudo experimentation in that imaginary construct.

I think the mind is inherently based on the notion of a separated realm.

I just saw someone talking about subjective things as opposed to 'objective science'.
But everything of the mind is inherently 'subjective'.
Since science is 'of the mind' it is also inherently subjective.
I guess the best one can state is that which most scrupulously as we are able adheres to observable reality, its artifacts & effects.

'Of the alternate realm, the mind.'
The mind is isolated from greater reality.
Which is a sort of odd thought, if we are of the Universe is it possible completely within the Universe to isolate from the Universe?

'Free will' is sort of funny too.
It implies both isolation/freedom from the Universe & yet simultaneous integration with it.

I think the mind is like some internal reflective realm where all input is divorced from absolute/actual immediacy [& filtered by mind mechanisms] & consciousness is some intensive state of [extreme?] awareness that can/does occur in that domain.
What is weird is that we can be 'aware' of non-existent things.
I am aware of 'the future' yet the future can not & does not exist.
I can be 'aware' of some creature of my imagination that i imagine is slithering around just under the surface of reality, & yet understand that for all practical purposes this is not the case.
I can be 'aware' of 2+2=4 yet no where around me with a marginal caveat of seeing the symbolic representation written is there any artificially clear identifiable fact of it.

My existence is that which may be impossible to exist. Or better as i try to chase myself i can not find myself, but only a trail of echo or effects i leave in my wake. The dog chasing its tail only much, much more subtle.
The detective trying to track down the ghost of myself. Running across smoking pipes, crumpled letters wondering who it is that left these things. Like a split personality that is trying to meet itself, but limited by discrete occupation to only one existence at a time. While i wait for the other person to arrive or arise i will never meet them. Only when i let go of who i am can i become the other & they can never meet the first.
Who is this unmet stranger & ghost who wanders my domain while i am gone?
it is none other than myself, my 'other' self.
Can you imagine, some other self coherent consciousness occupying you? Very yucky. bothersome.

We don't know that infinite gulfs of time may pass between the instants of our apparent existence.
A universe may be the dust mote on the surface of a quark.

it is sort of fun & a bit scary to think about.

In imagination i seem to be able to do anything,
reality, however is a bit more challenging.