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Mieli dalyviai! Visa mano kūryba ir kartu visi šie puslapiai yra visuomenės turtas, kuriuo visi kviečiami laisvai naudotis, dalintis, visaip perkurti. - Andrius



Sąmoningumu suvokiame - sąmoningumas yra susilaikymas nuo vertinimo, tai suskliautimas. Tai priešinga įprastam smegenų darbui, tai susilaikymas nuo duomenų apdorojimo.

Koks yra sąmoningumo tikslas?

  • Galim susilaikyti nuo mąstymo ar veikimo - užtat galim abejonę išpuoselėti dvejone.
  • Galim nesuveikti, neatsiliepti poreikiams, o verčiau būti tobuliems ar rūpintis kitų poreikiais, tai yra, išgyventi nulinį ar septintą požiūrį.
  • Galim puoselėti dorovę.
  • Galim susilaikyti nuo dėmesio ir jo modelio sulyginimo.

Sąmoningumas yra atskyrimas dėmesio ir jo modelio, susilaikymas nuo jų sutapatinimo.

Pats mąstymas yra, iš dalies, susilaikymas nuo veiklos.

By awareness I mean the growth in consciousness as we rise from {{Spirit}} (+0) to {{Structure}} (+1) to {{Representations}} (+2) to {{Unity}} (+3). I think that this is an increase in the scope of {{Self-understanding}}: nothing, something, anything, everything.

  • Spirit has no self, hence no self-understanding
  • Structure is self, hence is for self-understanding through oneself
  • Representation is for self-understanding through others
  • Unity is for self-understanding through God

See also: LevelsOfConsciousness, {{Qualia}}, {{Foursome}}, [AddThree +3], {{Thinking}}

[ February 15, 2007]

I am finding it helpful to consider these ideas in terms of models of the workings of the brain. I thank neuroscientist Giedrius Buracas for a very helpful and stimulating conversation last week in San Diego. We talked about:

  • the brain with reference to Jeff Hawkins's book "On Intelligence"
  • Giedrius's thoughts on the mechanism of consciousness
  • my thoughts on how such a mechanism might unfold from God
  • my observations on morality as the task of consciousness

Giedrius and I were roommates in graduate school. He understands my approach and so I was able to enjoy deep conversation with him. He is strongly grounded in a scientific and material point of view. This helped me look at things in a fresh light. I stress that in what follows I focus on my own interpretations.

Over the Christmas vacation I had read parts of Jeff Hawkins's book "On Intelligence" and so we were able to start from that. Jeff Hawkins is particularly interested in the cerebral cortex as a scrunched-up napkin-sized sheet which our mind uses for drawing its conclusions. This sheet can be used for all manner of purposes, so that, for example, the portion that normally would be used for sight gets repurposed in the blind for reading braille. Giedrius added that every function of the brain takes place both on this sheet but also in the structures beneath it. I imagine that the heterogeneous structure of our "reptilian" brain gets projected onto this sheet.

Jeff Hawkins emphasizes the discovery that there is ten times as much neural activity leading from the cognitive centers to the sensory centers than the other way around. This goes counter to the common understanding of the brain as a synthesizer of sensory input. Indeed, it suggest the opposite: That our mind is continuously projecting and checking absolutely everything it believes about the current reality. We are living as if in our mind's hologram.

This means that our mind is ever checking on "old" information and not just "new" information. Imagine being in a completely quiet room, and then suppose that everything stayed quiet even as you entered a busy street. You would know that something is very wrong - that you are not hearing anything! Indeed, you would probably notice even as you opened the door. Yet you have not received any "new" information or any signal at all. Instead, you are checking on what you already expect from before. But furthermore, your mind continues to function even when very strange things are happening.

Giedrius believes that the mechanism of consciousness is key to all manner of unanswered questions about the brain, just as the discovery of DNA answered so many questions in biology, genetics, biochemistry and evolution. He thinks of it in terms of our system of attention. Our attention focuses on that which is unexpected. It is an entire system that is expecting the unexpected. It is a complex model of our entire life by which we anticipate the unexpected and organize our response. Just as we are ever projecting "what" our entire world is like, so with our attention we are ever projecting "how" it works. Our attention is likewise projecting and checking all of its assumptions. Indeed, this checking takes place through the same cerebral cortex that serves as the medium for such checking, just as in a computer data and programs are stored in the same media, so that programs may be treated as data. Whereas our checking of the world is an interlinked set of disparate checks, our attention is a sparse system for arriving at the unity which we focus on to deal with the unexpected.

Giedrius thinks of consciousness as the projecting and checking of this system of attention as to whether it is working appropriately. I venture that consciousness is projecting and checking the unity of the system of attention. Whenever the system of attention is failing to model the unexpected and cope with it, then the consciousness checks the system of attention and considers whether the world is at fault - verifiably strange things are happening - or our model is at fault - it does not hang together. Our consciousness allows us to persist in conflict with the world and yet to resolve conflict within our model of it. Our consciousness projects and checks "why" the world is as it is.

Such a picture would fit with my theory as I describe below.

FlemmingFunch [ June 14, 2003]

I think I've been spending too little time recently in the field of consciousness. I've been busy with life, with work, family, with preparing for moving. All of which is good, but typically what really keeps me going in life is something more - an exploration of what it is all about, how the universe works, and what I am, and what my limits are. And usually things work best if I start with my own consciousness, as opposed to taking the material universe too seriously.

In having that kind of discussion, there's the fundamental problem that people have very different world views about consciousness, which some times makes it difficult to have the same conversation. Well, those world views do divide up into certain main categories, such as:

1. Consciousness is something fundamental and eternal, and the material universe as we see it, as well as our own existence, is all some kind of special case of that consciousness.

2. The universe is fundamentally material and non-sentient. A long series of coincidences between random non-sentient material components have surprisingly produced organic machines that are capable of self-reflective thinking.

and, for the sake of people who sort of might fit in number 1, but who don't feel they're allowed to think about it:

3. God created the universe and it is none of your damn business. Your only hope is to understand and obey God's commands.

  1. 1 would mostly be new age people, buddhists, hindus, other religious people who feel safe to think for themselves, plus an assortment ofdifferent philosophers.
  2. 2 would be many scientifically oriented people, as well as atheists.
  3. 3 would be fundamentalist religious people of various kinds.

Now, I would personally go with #1. But I get along fine with science people. And there's nothing particularly un-scientific about #1. These are all theories, and science is about coming up with the theories that best will predict things, and to test how well you succeed.

In general I can have a perfectly enjoyable discussion with anybody who will grant that their world view is just that - a world view. A model, a theory of how things work. But to the degree that we take our models for Truth, for The Way Things Really Are, then communication starts being a bit difficult.

For somebody who belongs firmly in #2, consciousness is maybe an interesting subject, but in a very different way than for a #1 person. The #2 person might be very interested in how to construct intelligence artificially, and in how to preserve consciousness, dreaming maybe of downloading consciousness to a computer. Which I'd have rather little interest in. I'd rather figure out how to stay in touch with the aspect of my consciousness that exists eternally and isn't limited by my current physical existence. It is not a matter of preserving it in a test tube, but rather of helping it shine through.

I'd expect that science and spirituality will meet, and it won't be a matter of two totally different worlds any longer. Quantum physics, evolutionary biology and systems thinking might very well solidify principles that otherwise were presented in metaphorical form in spiritual traditions. They already have, to a large extent, but it hasn't quite sunk in for many believers in science.

JosephGoguen [ June 14, 2003]

Dear Andrius, Fleming, and WhoSomeverElse:

If you are interested in consciousness, and perhaps even knowing about the different approaches that have been taken to consciousness, i would like to encourage you to look into the *Journal of Consciousness Studies*, which is devoted to this topic. Unlike most science journals, we regularly publish papers that take a religious point of view; unlike new age journals, we are completely rigorous about content; unlike any other journal that i know, we are really interdisciplinary, having published papers based on physics, feminism, mathematics, literature, psychology, philosophy (lots of serious philosophy of mind), neuroscience, biology, art criticism, sociology, medicine, law, computer science, buddhist studies, history, evolution, ......., all rigorously peer reviewed. Science and religion meet here every month, along with the humanities, including even some poetry and art.

For your information, Buddhists dont believe in anything being eternal; the transience of all things, including consciusness, is one of the most fundamental points of basic buddhism, shared by all traditions. I think you are confusing Buddhism with Hinduism.

As for achieving world peace, democracy, etc., Buddhists believe in working on yourself first, right speech, right livelihood, etc., which seems to require some effort, mainly meditation, to avoid becoming rigid and preachy and doing more harm than good. My personal opinion is that technology to interconnect 10^5 people would most likely be exploited by those with power, just as are radio, newspapers, TV, ..., and increasingly, the internet. We need to develop inner peace, individually and collectively, rather than just technology.

I will try to forward you some interesting bits from time to time.



JosephGoguen: Another strand of all this relates to consciousness and to the ultimate concerns of the Buddhists who created concepts like sunyata ("mu" in Japanese), which is to fully liberate the mind. Consciousness studies is another new field that is currently exploding with new results and new ideas, in part due to the movements mentioned above, but mainly (i think) due to new technology for observing the mind at work, e.g., fMRI and PET scans. It has been shown that advanced meditators really do have different minds from the rest of us, and many old myths about memory, perception, emotion, etc. have been deposed. I think we are coming to understand what it means to be human much better than ever before, and along with that, what it means to be alive. So Ibrahim's questions are really very timely, very deep, and very productive!


This very much relates to my friend John Harland's (a fellow grad student from UCSD) theory of consciousness. It's actually simple but very powerful: You simply consider the statements relevant to some domain and the ability to check if they are true or not. Something is conscious if it shares this "Turing test" type ability - but this is crucial! it is with respect to that domain. (I suppose also the ability to reflect upon oneself or another being that it is able to apply such tests. I suppose this accords with the operation +3 that I think of as consciousness, by which I think we add three perspectives (to a division of everything) so as to allow for such a generic "other" (such as ourselves but also others) who can make such tests). So there is a huge partial order of consciousnesses that accords with the many domains out there. As a practical example, he's interested in how a deaf person might be able to "see" sound in an intuitive way, this should be possible. Similarly, I'm interested to be able to not just 'know anything' but to be able to know, in particular, that vantage point from which I can know anything, looking out on all dominion. Which is to say, to sit in God's lap, and look out with him.

In passing, on your idea of life: ive sometimes thought that "life is the consciousness of god" -- though usually without god.

== joseph

> In passing, on your idea of life: ive sometimes thought that "life is the > consciousness of god" -- though usually without god. > > == joseph

I'm curious to hear more about your thought that "life is the consciousness of god", with or without god, and what is the nature of that god, even just as a dummy variable.

The idea that "life is the goodness of God" together with "everlasting life is the understanding of the goodness of God" yields: "everlasting life is the understanding of life".

This does seem close to the self-understanding that relates to consciousness. And it also injects a quality of stepping out, into the everlasting, the absolute. That also seems part of consciousness.

Now I feel confused. I guess I should ask what you mean. Do you mean life is "god's consciousness" or "consciousness of the concept/nature/presence of god"?

Just as a side note, I think of the Trinity as a threesome given by consciousness of the nullsome. God is one, but to be conscious of God, we resort to "taking a stand - following through - reflecting", and in following his will, to obeying or believing or caring.

{{Andrius}} [ October 16, 2003]

Joseph, Thank you for your letter and link. I agree that the onus is on me to make the case on the limited number of structures. One of the reasons that I'm working on a unifying framework on the structures is that from there I want to be able to generate three different kinds of language: argumentation, verbalization, narration. And all the manner of patterns that come up. I have some good results and/or material for each, much of the kind that you point to.


See also: {{Consciousness}}, {{Concepts}}, {{Institutions}}

JosephGoguen: I have also been trying to relate my ideas about concepts and logic to consciousness, and in particular, to qualia, which i define as segments of perception that are perceived as wholes (though they may still be seen to have parts), and i have worked on applications to free jazz improvisation. For these topics, see

for more detail, as well as the Journal of Consciousness Studies.

2002.10.02 {{A}}: Koks ry�ys tarp sąmoningumo ir įgyvendinimo? {{K}}: A� gyvenu pagal savo Tėvą, gyvenimo ribose.

2004.12.28 {{A}}: Kam sąmoningėjimas reikalingas? {{D}}: Sąmoningėjimas užtikrina, kad susigaudai tu, o ne tavo aplinka.


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