Wednesday, May 19, 2010

The T=0 Complexity Theory of Consciousness (p. 9)

other words, the conscious decision to perform an act comes after the brain has already registered the beginning of the act.

As shocking as this is to someone who wishes to think of his or her conscious actions as actually being conscious, we submit that the result merely verifies a fact about Consciousness already stated here. As we have said, above, all unmediated sensory input and emotion resides entirely in the subconscious. The Consciousness can do nothing but mediate those sensory data, modify those emotions and the primitive actions they provoke and otherwise solve abstract problems. The source of all will is in the emotions. That is to say, the subconscious does, in fact, decide to initiate all action. The modification of will (of primitive action), in order to prevent adverse consequences, is, at base, a complex problem to be solved in order to enhance survival. That is to say, the function resides in the Consciousness. The Consciousness is entirely reactive. It only decides whether to allow an action proposed by the subconscious or whether to oppose or modify the action.

As for sensory mediation, there is only space available here for a few key words. The Consciousness mediates sensory input on various levels. Among the more important to our sense of consciousness is vastly improved pattern matching which also provides us with the wondrous variety of sights, sounds, tactile sensations, etc., available to our inner world. Those with blindsight can not see only in the sense that this pattern matching is no longer available to their visual processes. The subconscious can still see, but it is revealed to us that its seeing is impoverished of an the inner world. The deficit can only be described as a loss of our greatest gift: that inner world, the experience of Consciousness.

So then, let us state our definition, at this juncture, in the clearest and most succinct terms possible. Consciousness is located in all or part of the grey matter of the neo-cortex where the neuronal processes per unit volume are vastly denser and better organized. It contains no inherent emotions, volition, senses or unified sense of self. It is entirely reactive to the processes of the subconscious. It is an area of neuronal processes particularly and solely fitted for problem solving. It has no inherent biological biases except to solve problems and no emotional biases at all. It is evolutionarily selected for because of the sensory and behavioral problems it succeeds in solving, through mediation, thus greatly enhancing the survival of its host population.

For all the wonder and complexity of sensory mediation, however, our experience informs us that it is at the service of far higher conscious activities. We do not feel like we are the sum of our mediated sensory inputs, but, rather, feel like those inputs are merely information provided to our Consciousness. This is due to the fact that we almost entirely identify our Consciousness with the processes resident in our frontal lobes, with thinking, with abstract reasoning, with the symphonic whole of our subconscious desires and their mediation.

The frontal lobes solve the single most vital problem: how to transform the senses of self of all our myriad parts, and the archaic pre-conscious sense of a unified self, into a single conscious “I”. How to coordinate successfully the vast amounts of sensory input, emotion and memory such that all the disparate parts of us feel like, and, therefore, work together as, one single organism capable of bringing all of its vast resources to bear on the problems that life presents. That “I,” is called our “executive function”. We necessarily locate all of our emotions, senses, repressions, etc., in our executive function, not because they are actually located in the frontal lobes, but because the only way we can act as a single unitary being is to feel like they are. As

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