Wednesday, May 19, 2010

The T=0 Complexity Theory of Consciousness (p. 11)

alternately, the neo-cortex, to a non-physical boundary shared with an epiphenomenon (emergent property). This seems to me a far more elegant explanation of the nature of the mind, and solution to the persistent problem of mind-body duality, than any presented to this point, and one which accounts for all observed phenomena.

Our definition of Consciousness, accordingly, amounts to the first step of a Complexity Theory of Consciousness. Consciousness is an emergent property of the brain which manifests at a threshold complexity-level provided to the brain by the addition of the neo-cortex.

So now, let us state our final definition in the clearest and most succinct terms possible. Consciousness is an emergent property 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 (all of which are local to the subconscious —paleo-mammalian — portion of the brain) the which are only modified or mediated by the Consciousness. The Consciousness is entirely reactive to the processes of the subconscious, modifying those processes through the medium of complex neuronal algorithms. 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 enhancing the survival of its host population.

Epilogue: The Consciousness at t=t’

At a time long before t=t’, the frontal lobes began extending their problem solving beyond the host organism in itself to the enhanced survival of the group. This required that Consciousness expand into the shared physical world of a group, small at first, but growing as the external component of Consciousness could accommodate the greater numbers and accomplish the concomitant survival enhancements for the host organisms of the collective and individual components of Consciousness. Rather than communication and coordination via intra-cranial neurotransmitters alone, Consciousness utilized a new style of transmission across its external regions: we call that transmitter “language”.

If we skip past all the myriad developments between the inception of language and the present, we find an entire built world and further enhanced external transmission via radio waves and a Consciousness profoundly altered by them. The implications are enormous and beyond the scope of this paper. For the present, it must suffice to say that from the inception of language to t=t’ the Consciousness has left behind every sign that it continues to develop, that it has jumped outside of the neo-cortex in order to expand its modification of the subconscious mind and to pass along that expanded capability to the individual Consciousnesses that its built world patterns by the processes of internalization and that, in turn, pattern the built world by the processes of externalization.

This does suggest an answer to one of the larger questions which arises from the theory that the Consciousness is an emergent property. As those who are familiar with emergent properties are likely aware, the properties tend to be stable for more or less short periods of time. The Consciousness as we presently know it, however, tends to be remarkably stable throughout the

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