Saturday, August 16, 2014

Your Mind is Not a Machine in the Skull

Mind is a separate entity, independent of the body, and having its own self-contained systems, language, abilities, and requirements.  Many folks speak of their mind, spirit, heart, or body as separate from "I" which is experiencing or using these instruments, but few would claim any certainty that these components exist in and of themselves.

The general view is that humans are an entity comprised of all these pieces and we throw it in a box labeled "me" without considering how complex, and unconscious, is the human condition.

What do we think the Mind is, really?

Our body is a system and we know a lot about how it works, how to fix it, what to eat, and so forth.  There are resources for the mind, too, and they are much different than the body.  The mind can translate a vibration in the air into a symbol, the symbol into meaning, and the meaning can be translated back to symbols and then a vibratory chord complex in the throat can produce the required frequencies to convey the intended meaning.  Yes, language.

Consider everything happening without any conscious input. 

Perhaps science is correct in assuming the mind is a result of evolutionary biology and is seated somewhere in the physical apparatus of the brain.  To use a computer analogy (which are essentially external brains), you need the hardware in order to program the software.

Did the brain evolve before the mind, or mind before brain?

We know that there's a feedback, where mental patterns can strengthen or weaken neural connections, and we know that damage to the wiring can result in mental problems, suggesting the two are intricately connected.  This is analogous to software that tunes or modifies the frequencies of the hardware, or the CPU over-heating and causing frequent, critical problems in the software.

Tests can measure electrical brain activity, even pinpointing where memories are stored; someday, a doctor might point to a brain-scan and say, "Here's the time you went on vacation with your family to Hawaii."  Understanding the hardware yields nothing about the software, yet the software can analyze and comprehend the hardware.

Quantifying the brain cannot reveal the quality of experience.

The mind has far too many unique attributes to list, but you need only give a moment's pause to understand that there are things that make us human that only exist as ideas.  The future, for instance, is generally assumed as that time which is not yet but is to come; we plan for it, live for it, dream about it, and yet it only exists as a thought.

Belief is held in the mind, existing as software and yet able to control human activity.

We record deeds and lessons, re-iterating them to the young, and teach what has come before to those who come after.  Only a mind can comprehend the reasons for education, learning, and imagination.  Where does mathematics exist?  Fictional tales, both told and heard, weave fantastic elements that have no correlation in the world around us, but are constructs of some unseen space in our mind?

The human brain has remained the same, genetically speaking, for a long, long time.  Yet, we know have hand-held computers and high-speed data transmission on a global scale--quite a far cry from the earliest days of our ancestors, wielding stick and rock, painting on cave walls, and so forth.

How exactly could the brain in the skull of those primitives be the same brain behind our current society filled with technology, art, music, and all the expressions of mind?

If the brain is the same, then the brain evolved to the maximum capacity that would be needed IN THE FUTURE to process, operate, and innovate in a world that would look nothing like the earliest days.

How does evolution happen before it's needed? 

Perhaps the brain evolved to have a moldable plasticity to it, making it a flexible vehicle of adaptation.  The same question arises: if the mind is a result of the brain, the brain evolved to accommodate all possible configurations before the mind (which molds the plastic) came to be.

Take the time to consider all of the elements of the mind, what are the things which cannot exist without a mind?  Look at all of the animals on this planet and how they go about their lives.  There is far too much difference (culture, religion, tattoos, etc) to not notice that humanity possesses something much more advanced that a slightly different animal brain.

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