Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Consciousness...The Leader or the Follower?

Human consciousness is not a thing distinct from the body. There is no independent mind; no mind/body duality. Consciousness is simply the body's simultaneous awareness of itself in operation (albeit at a higher, more evolutionary defined level). Human consciousness is the body's inner awareness of the its sensory contact with the stimuli of its external world, and an inner 'sense' (inner neural registering) of the processing (synapse-ing) of this data against prior experience (stored as 'memory' in the manifold existing circuits in the body's neural pathways). This whole sensation of the inner process of registering, processing and evaluating stimuli against the past---all as a prelude to purposeful human action aimed toward survival--is the essence of what we call 'consciousness'. (By the way, it is irrelevant, definitional speaking, whether such neural inner action culminates in subsequent outward expression, or remains inner-flowing; what we call thinking, cognition, consciousness, or 'inner' awareness).

Humans in no way choose any course any action; and that includes the decision to think. Once stimulated from without, the system becomes neurally, that is, physically, aware; and thus thinking is nothing more than an echo which follows an originating sound; consciousness is simply an inner echo of a humans own inner decision-making process reacting to outer (and sometimes inner) stimuli.

Therefore and thereby what we call 'consciousness', or cognition, is not a prelude to choice, but the resultant affect of choice. Consciousness is nothing more or less than the system's ex-post-facto sense of its own inner stimulus/synapse/response system in operation, an after-the-fact awareness of 'having chosen' or 'already in the process of choosing' an appropriate action. It can be defined as an inner awareness of the human system's reactive monitoring of already 'done-deals', recognition of decisions already on the way to reactive fruition. (For example, we think we freely 'choose' an outward action, but it only seems that way because we are so instantly privy to the result of the physical stimulus/synapse/response mechanism in positive operation that we 'feel' we have effected it. 'Consciousness' is an optical illusion, a reverse time-lag registering...akin to Einstein's space bending back on itself...of the human systems stimulus/synapse/response mechanism already in operation.

'Consciousness' is therefore antecedent, not precedent; it is an ex post facto awareness, rather than precedent 'choice' of the system's operation; it is a mental registering--a watching--or a sensing--as it were--of actions that have already started in their inner and outer pathways.

We think we choose to learn something, for example. Nonsense; by the time we choose to learn, we are already in the process of learning. In reality that educational 'choice' is something that has been priorly forced on us by the bombardment of other's (outer world's) words, deeds and pressures--automatically activating in our system (1) an acceptance of the stimulus and (2) a challenge to the system's reactive process to acquire cost/benefit knowledge of appropriate reactive behavior to that particular stimulus (the purpose of the 'learning' process, by the way, is to make the instigators/stimulators of our education, the external other humans who have programed/simmulated us toward learning, those precedent 'survivors of the fittest', more making us more fit).

We think we 'choose' to read a book; in reality our system has already been stimulated by others--our external world internalized--to deal positively with the reality of books (or TV, or the Internet). That external pressure has already seeded of our 'johnny-come-lately' independent 'choice' of the value of books, TV or the Internet, not the other way around. The cart of consciousness--choice--follows the 'horse' of prior determination; perhaps, more cogently: the animal owner thinks he is taking the dog for a walk when in truth, the dog has already chosen the path, and is merely tugging on the owner's leash (consciousness) for the owner to follow...and thereby seducing him to think he is guiding the effort.