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PerVirtuous

The Economics of the Brain

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PerVirtuous
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Fig 1 - The basic configuration.


The mind is an extremely complex series of systems that are independent, interdependent, and self referencing. There is no way that the human mind is capable of comprehending itself. It can, however, manage itself. Similar to someone who has no idea how their car operates but drives it daily. The mind has an unknown number of systems which it can run, but all of those systems fall into one of three categories: Awareness, Perception, and Intent.

Awareness is the largest grouping, for it encompasses everything the mind thinks. All incoming, working, or outgoing information are part of awareness. Think of it like a huge database of everything we have experienced in any way. We access this information to run our lives. Obviously, the more information we have the better our decisions have the potential to be. Having access can be looked at two ways: One, the sheer volume of information, Two, the ability to access that information. In other words, you can't find it if you don't have it and you can't use it if you have it but can't find it. Either of these problems will diminish your ability to think. So, it is quite apparent that the first order of increasing the ability to think is to increase awareness by adding as much information as possible and organizing it for best accessibility.

The second grouping is Perception. Perception is where you search your awareness for information and then synthesize it into a reality. I believe the first and foremost function of perception is to weed out all extraneous information. If we considered everything we knew in every decision, we would be paralysed with computations. It is critical for us to not waste thought on redundant considerations in every single thought. Perception organizes and prioritizes the importance of what we pay attention to. This includes the basic facts of awareness, a self analyzation of perception to gauge accuracy. and a look at potential consequences for intended responses.

The third grouping is intent. What actions do we take based upon the perceptions distilled from our awareness. This is the most important of all the systems, as our very lives depend upon the quality of the output. Obviously, this means the quality of the input and the consideration is crucial to gaining the necessary data to draw a reasonable conclusion and choose to act upon it.

These three function groupings are represented in the graphic above. Awareness is the entire gray area. Think of it as a data warehouse and that there are areas in the warehouse where shipping and receiving take place. Perception is the lighter gray area on the interior, the active mind. This is the receiving area, where the data is brought to box up into perceptions. Then within this area is a smaller area called shipping where the information is taken away to cause activity.

Intent is the little white ball in the middle. It is not actually in the middle, nor is the proportion to be considered. I am just relating the basic concepts so that people can understand how the mind works. The graphics are crude symbolic representations of very complex truths. Like any business, the mind needs to maintain a positive cash flow. That means its actions must be profitable. That profit can then be reinvested and worked to generate more profit. When, for whatever reason, the profit will no longer cover expenses, a business dies. Let's see how this applies to the economics of the mind and how it works.

At any given moment, the mind has a finite amount of energy. The more cleverly and efficiently this energy is invested, the more profit it will generate. We invest our energy, which is the currency of the mind, into our actions first. Without them nothing else happens. if we waste energy with needless actions, we run out of currency. The first lesson in mind economics is to be efficient in action. Don't overdo. Only do profitable things.

The second lesson in mind economics is interpreting data. We have a limited amount of time to react to pressing events. The speed and accuracy of our interpretations is critical for us to develop the profitable responses which the intent can then carry out. Part of this is trial and error, part of it is strategizing and anticipating, and part of it is data gathering: what is important to know, how much do we need to know, how accurate is what we know?

This brings us to the third lesson in mind economics: Organization of Awareness. How do we take in information, how do we store it, how do we access it, how do we prioritize it. I believe this to be the most neglected aspect of the entire thinking process. So, what we are going to do now is to work backwards from Awareness to creating an intention.

If someone brings you a bag of objects and tells you to stick your fist in and determine what is in the bag, it will be quite difficult. If you are allowed to open your fingers, then you will have a much easier time of identifying things because fingers are more sensitive than fists and allow for more access to the objects. If we imagine the database of the brain as millions of capilaries leading our from nerves and a tiny bit of information on the end of each, we can begin to understand the finger comparison. Routine thinking is like a fist. It is more powerful than a finger, so for certain tasks more practical, however, for other tasks it is not suited. So, there are times for routine thought and times not to have routine thought. When routine thought becomes habitual, then we lose the ability to assimilate new thought as well and process it into perception. We lose the sharpness of the image.

This creates the need for balance, because routine thought conserves energy. So some is necessary, yet it creates more work to access information if overdone. Figure 2 shows one way to access information not normally readily available to perception. this is called a "shift" in perception.


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Fig 2 - Perception shifting to access what is normally dormant


One way to access Awareness that is notmally not within the realm of perception is to move the realm of perception to incorporate it. This is a very economically conservative way to approach the problem, however, for the period that the shift takes place the preception has lost its continuity of self identity. The normal neural pathways upon which it relies are unavailable, so there is a trade off. The new information is available, but some of the regular old information is not. Thus, we have a better ability to function within the realm of the new information, however, we have lost our continuity and are not ourselves when we do so. When we shift back to the normal position, we may not even have the capacity to remember what we learned while we were shifted.

These are the types of shifts that take place during dreaming. Perception takes trips around the mind to familiarize with what is there so that in the event of an emergency, it would know where to shift to to find it, for example: in fearful times of fight or flight. This helps to explain why we often do not remember dreams. We have shifted beyond our capacity to remember from our normal position. There is another way to increase our ability to percieve awareness, as demonstrated in fig 3.




linked-image


Fig 3 - Expanding the realm of perception.




This is a method of expanding perception to incorporate more awareness which does not lose the continuity of self. Notice how much larger the area of activity is in fig 3 over fig 1 or 2. It has its advantages and drawbacks as well. The advantages are more access to awareness and, therefore, better perceptions with the bonus of perceiving them from the normal position so that continuity is maintained. The drawback is that it requires far more energy than is normally used. One must either more carefully deploy energy or increase energy levels. This is done by more efficient use of energy in the realm of intention as well as in perception. Efficiency is the name of the game.

How does one make perceptions more efficient? This is the great secret of the skeptic's world! The skeptic does not believe that a human being can know reality in a concrete manner. All we can ever do is represent reality with our incomplete database of awareness. This means we are not obligated to believe anything we know, thus saving a great deal of energy! It takes a great deal of energy to maintain a working synthetic reality in the mind. One where you know how things should be and how it should run. The skeptic, however, does not need to have such a synthesized reality for he is aware that he does not know how things should be. He does not know how things should run. Not needing to maintain such a static singular reality allows all of the energy that would have been used maintaining it to be used to expand the size of the area of perception.

Let me put this another way. Since the skeptic does not know how things should be, he has no reason to stress about them. Regardless of the outcome of any event, the skeptic will have no problem adapting. He does not resist the moment. However it turns out is fine, because the skeptic does not claim to know how the moment should be. However things are is exactly how they should be. Since they are that way, and we do not know a better way, status quo wins by default. this is not to say that the skeptic does not try to influence the future, it only says that he is not obsessing about it. Why would he?

Any kind of value judgement requires energy to maintain. The stronger the fixation the more energy required to maintain it. So, to increase awareness and incorporate more of it into perception, all one needs to do is to suspend judgments. The emotion required to maintain certainty in judgments must come from somewhere. One of two things will happen, or both. The area where perception is assembled will shrink and systems will become dormant while the energy is rerouted to maintain the symbolic reality, or habitual thinking will replace true awareness in many places to make up the energy used.

The concept of Mind Economics is vast and there is no way to develop it here to any great degree. I will be happy to answer questions and determine what information people want expounded. The basic conclusion is that one needs to consciously attempt to balance where energy is deployed within the three basic areas of the mind. Inefficient use of energy becomes a bottleneck and prevents further enlightenment. This is a simple concept that can help anyone deploy their energy more efficiently. Edited by PerVirtuous

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John from Lowell

It does not seem to me that you are taking into consideration the higher mind or the God Self.

Is this a consideration in your thinking?

Thanks,

John

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Mattshark

PerVirtuous, do you actually know what a sceptic is?

Most of the brain btw is for keeping you alive.

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PerVirtuous
PerVirtuous, do you actually know what a sceptic is?

Sure do. Do you?

http://www.unexplained-mysteries.com/forum...howtopic=153122

Most of the brain btw is for keeping you alive.

How is that different than what I said?

Edited by PerVirtuous

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PerVirtuous
It does not seem to me that you are taking into consideration the higher mind or the God Self.

Is this a consideration in your thinking?

Thanks,

John

Certainly. I did not name the functions of the systems, just that they exist. That would certainly be one of them. Thanks for asking.

Edited by PerVirtuous

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Mattshark

Yes I do, I work in science, being sceptical is important. That is why evidence is absolutely vital in science. scepticism is questioning.

How is that different than what I said?

I was just making everything simple and easy.

I disagree with what you say in general though. I'm just too tired to go into it right now, but I will in tomorrow.

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PerVirtuous
Yes I do, I work in science, being sceptical is important. That is why evidence is absolutely vital in science. scepticism is questioning.

There is a difference between being skeptical and being a skeptic. Just like there is a difference between being logical and being a logician.

I was just making everything simple and easy.

I disagree with what you say in general though. I'm just too tired to go into it right now, but I will in tomorrow.

Looking forward to your input.

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Virtual Particle

I like it it is simple and to the point.

Any thoughts?

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Mattshark
There is a difference between being skeptical and being a skeptic. Just like there is a difference between being logical and being a logician.

Looking forward to your input.

I'm sceptical of everything, including my own work.

I think this article from Lausanne University is a better way of showing how the brain uses energy.

Brain energy metabolism.

I feel there is no need to save energy in the brain, if it is using energy it is work and that means it will keep working for longer.

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PerVirtuous
I'm sceptical of everything, including my own work.

I think this article from Lausanne University is a better way of showing how the brain uses energy.

Brain energy metabolism.

I feel there is no need to save energy in the brain, if it is using energy it is work and that means it will keep working for longer.

This is silly. If you don't care the quality of what you perceive and what you decide, then I suppose your approach is just fine. Thing is, it does not address quality of thought or anything spiritual. My approach deals with everything spiritual and specifically addresses quality of thought.

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Mattshark
This is silly. If you don't care the quality of what you perceive and what you decide, then I suppose your approach is just fine. Thing is, it does not address quality of thought or anything spiritual. My approach deals with everything spiritual and specifically addresses quality of thought.

Quality of thought is subjective though, who is to say what thought is of a better quality than another. I posted science, it is not going to have anything about spirituality in it because that would be pseudo-science.

You were also talking about energy and what I posted was exclusively on the brains energy.

Edited by Mattshark

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PerVirtuous
Quality of thought is subjective though, who is to say what thought is of a better quality than another. I posted science, it is not going to have anything about spirituality in it because that would be pseudo-science.

You were also talking about energy and what I posted was exclusively on the brains energy.

Science is limited to the ordering of empirical data. It cannot answer questions of morality, meaning or spirituality. Using science to discuss quality of life is like using the rules of Monopoly to discuss music. It is not "pseudo-science", because science cannot discuss such things at all. If you are suggesting that we ignore all philosophical conecepts in favor of simple materialism, then I counter with the fact that materialism is utterly without meaning or purpose. What would be the point?

Edited by PerVirtuous

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Mattshark
Science is limited to the ordering of empirical data. It cannot answer questions of morality, meaning or spirituality. Using science to discuss quality of life is like using the rules of Monopoly to discuss music. It is not "pseudo-science", because science cannot discuss such things at all. If you are suggesting that we ignore all philosophical conecepts in favor of simple materialism, then I counter with the fact that materialism is utterly without meaning or purpose. What would be the point?

All those things are completely subjective though (though evolutionary biology can actually explain some aspects of morality) and morality in general can be looked at through sociology. The other two are always unanswerable (unless of course you mean the goal of all life, to reproduce). It is pseudo-science when you start talking about energy use in the brain and it certainly has nothing to do with scepticism (you now, wanting evidence for claims).

Materialistic science gave you your computer and all other technology, health, allowed understanding of the planet and how it works, how life arose, how the universe works and continues to improve in these fields. Clearly it has plenty of use and hence a purpose.

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Virtual Particle

Mattshark life experiences has much to do with why people acknowledge that there is more to the brain /body than meets the eye (resonances for example) and perhaps there are reasons for why some people have experience’s and other's do not. And of course in each of us there is that little chuckle in the back of the brain when someone gets defensive about the conflict.

As far as Science Teaching should be a Science, Politics should not and perhaps that is part of the problem.

Any thoughts?

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N080DY
Yes I do, I work in science, being sceptical is important. That is why evidence is absolutely vital in science. scepticism is questioning.

You're skeptical, sure, but a true skeptic would question the evidence itself, the science that has been thought to you and the evidence behind the sciences you know... To a true skeptic, everything can be possible... I think you seem more like a pseudoskeptic (or whaveter), considering your "it's impossible" -attitude I've seen on "psychic abilities" -threads...

And what I understood from the OP, is that it's just an advice how to re-direct your "energy" (or whatever you want to call it) more efficiently... Apparently I've always been something of a skeptic, never really had a word for it... Really nice posts you have PerVirtuous, it's a shame there doesn't seem to be that many (true) skeptics around...

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PerVirtuous
All those things are completely subjective though (though evolutionary biology can actually explain some aspects of morality) and morality in general can be looked at through sociology.

It can be looked at. Big deal. It cannot be understood.

The other two are always unanswerable (unless of course you mean the goal of all life, to reproduce).

This is a negative claim for which you did not, can not provide any reasonable evidence. You, my friend, are a hypocrite. Any true skeptic NEVER makes a claim he cannot back up with evidence.

It is pseudo-science when you start talking about energy use in the brain and it certainly has nothing to do with scepticism (you now, wanting evidence for claims).

The father of skepticism is Pyrrho. Let's see what he says about it.

The proper course of the sage, said Pyrrho, is to ask himself three questions. Firstly we must ask what things are and how they are constituted. Secondly, we ask how we are related to these things. Thirdly, we ask what ought to be our attitude towards them. Pyrrho's answer was that things are indistinguishable, unmeasurable, undecidable, and no more this than that, or both this and that and neither this nor that. He concluded that human senses neither transmit truths nor lie.[2] Humanity cannot know the inner substance of things, only how things appear.

The impossibility of knowledge, even in regard to our own ignorance or doubt, should induce the wise man to withdraw into himself, avoiding the stress and emotion which belong to the contest of vain imaginings. This theory of the impossibility of knowledge is the first and the most thorough exposition of agnosticism in the history of thought. Its ethical implications may be compared with the ideal tranquility of the Stoics and the Epicureans.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pyrrho

Agnosticism is the belief that one should not hold objectively true anything that cannot be proven by empirical evidence. It is another way to define skepticism. With skepticism, however, we also recognize that all questions cannot be answered with empirical evidence.

Pyrrho applied these results to life in general, concluding that, since nothing can be known, the only proper attitude is ataraxia, "freedom from worry". ("By suspending judgment, by confining oneself to phenomena or objects as they appear, and by asserting nothing definite as to how they really are, one can escape the perplexities of life and attain an imperturbable peace of mind.")

This peace of mind is a definite position of spiritual wisdom. What is not explicitly expressed is that it is perfectly reasonable to assemble non-empirical evidence to answer questions for which empirical evidence will not work. The skeptic simply realizes that that such information is not objective. That in no way means that the information is not useful or is incorrect.

Materialistic science gave you your computer and all other technology, health, allowed understanding of the planet and how it works, how life arose, how the universe works and continues to improve in these fields. Clearly it has plenty of use and hence a purpose.

It also gave us global warming, atomic weapons, pollution, and the ability for gluttons to assemble fortunes unimaginable previously and enslave a population through mass media as well as through economics. You speak of science the way a believer speaks of Christ. You are irrational and not backing your facts up with reasonable evidence. You are speaking of "belief" not knowledge. Thus, it is certainly not a skeptical position, as it is not objectivey true information.

Saying that science has a use and, therefore, somehow reflects upon our purpose is a philosophical argument and not a scientific one. That purpose is assumed philosophically and not evidenced empirically. Thus, you have proven my point in your rebuttal.

Edited by PerVirtuous

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PerVirtuous
You're skeptical, sure, but a true skeptic would question the evidence itself, the science that has been thought to you and the evidence behind the sciences you know... To a true skeptic, everything can be possible... I think you seem more like a pseudoskeptic (or whaveter), considering your "it's impossible" -attitude I've seen on "psychic abilities" -threads...

And what I understood from the OP, is that it's just an advice how to re-direct your "energy" (or whatever you want to call it) more efficiently... Apparently I've always been something of a skeptic, never really had a word for it... Really nice posts you have PerVirtuous, it's a shame there doesn't seem to be that many (true) skeptics around...

The materialist position is actually a "religious" or "faith based" position in that they have the need to believe they know the answers. If you suggest that science is only an ordering of incomplete information they become defensive because they WANT it to be true and absolute. They NEED the comfort of feeling their understanding is absolute. Providing information counter annoys them. When I showed a materialist once that we do not know what gravity is at all, he suggested that my approach would have us all floating off into space, as if his knowledge of science was what held the universe together. So many people suffer from this delusion. Changing the way we describe gravity in no way will alter gravity itself. To suggest so is to believe the perception of the universe is more important than the universe itself. The skeptic recognizes our descriptions of the universe as descriptions ONLY, and that the true essence of the universe is impossible to describe. The only thing that can be described is how it appears to us.

Edited by PerVirtuous

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PerVirtuous
Mattshark life experiences has much to do with why people acknowledge that there is more to the brain /body than meets the eye (resonances for example) and perhaps there are reasons for why some people have experience’s and other's do not. And of course in each of us there is that little chuckle in the back of the brain when someone gets defensive about the conflict.

As far as Science Teaching should be a Science, Politics should not and perhaps that is part of the problem.

Any thoughts?

When materialists make irresponsible negative generalizations, it is evidence that they believe science the way a zealot believes doctrine. It is irrational. Yet, believing that they are the rational one is important to them. It is quite a paradox.

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Mattshark
You're skeptical, sure, but a true skeptic would question the evidence itself, the science that has been thought to you and the evidence behind the sciences you know... To a true skeptic, everything can be possible... I think you seem more like a pseudoskeptic (or whaveter), considering your "it's impossible" -attitude I've seen on "psychic abilities" -threads...

And what I understood from the OP, is that it's just an advice how to re-direct your "energy" (or whatever you want to call it) more efficiently... Apparently I've always been something of a skeptic, never really had a word for it... Really nice posts you have PerVirtuous, it's a shame there doesn't seem to be that many (true) skeptics around...

What you mean like reading the papers I had to read in uni? Reading papers that I have shown?

I think you don't know what you are talking about.

Oh and I have studied plenty on biology and I know that this is case regarding energy in the human body.

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Mattshark
The materialist position is actually a "religious" or "faith based" position in that they have the need to believe they know the answers. If you suggest that science is only an ordering of incomplete information they become defensive because they WANT it to be true and absolute. They NEED the comfort of feeling their understanding is absolute. Providing information counter annoys them. When I showed a materialist once that we do not know what gravity is at all, he suggested that my approach would have us all floating off into space, as if his knowledge of science was what held the universe together. So many people suffer from this delusion. Changing the way we describe gravity in no way will alter gravity itself. To suggest so is to believe the perception of the universe is more important than the universe itself. The skeptic recognizes our descriptions of the universe as descriptions ONLY, and that the true essence of the universe is impossible to describe. The only thing that can be described is how it appears to us.

Erm no, science is materialistic. It deals only with what we can measure. If you leave materialism you leave science.

This is a negative claim for which you did not, can not provide any reasonable evidence. You, my friend, are a hypocrite. Any true skeptic NEVER makes a claim he cannot back up with evidence.

What negative claim. And why am I a hypocrite, you are talking about something that is subjective. Learn what you are talking about.

Speaking of referencing, I notice you had none.

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Mattshark
Mattshark life experiences has much to do with why people acknowledge that there is more to the brain /body than meets the eye (resonances for example) and perhaps there are reasons for why some people have experience’s and other's do not. And of course in each of us there is that little chuckle in the back of the brain when someone gets defensive about the conflict.

As far as Science Teaching should be a Science, Politics should not and perhaps that is part of the problem.

Any thoughts?

Life experience is subjective. Your interpretations of events are subject to a lot of factors such as prior knowledge and preconceived beliefs and if you cannot explain it your likely to devise some way to explain it. Experience is subjective and gives no basis for an argument on such a thing. Biology, however, shows the brain and the body are one in the same.

Politics does not teach science.

New Scientist: Mind Fiction - Why the brain tells tall tales.

Edited by Mattshark

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Mattshark
When materialists make irresponsible negative generalizations, it is evidence that they believe science the way a zealot believes doctrine. It is irrational. Yet, believing that they are the rational one is important to them. It is quite a paradox.

Nonsense.

It is because I have a biology degree and I am a post grad biology student. I just clearly understand evidence and science far better than you do.

ALL SCIENCE IS MATERIALISTIC.

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Mattshark
It also gave us global warming, atomic weapons, pollution, and the ability for gluttons to assemble fortunes unimaginable previously and enslave a population through mass media as well as through economics. You speak of science the way a believer speaks of Christ. You are irrational and not backing your facts up with reasonable evidence. You are speaking of "belief" not knowledge. Thus, it is certainly not a skeptical position, as it is not objectivey true information.

Saying that science has a use and, therefore, somehow reflects upon our purpose is a philosophical argument and not a scientific one. That purpose is assumed philosophically and not evidenced empirically. Thus, you have proven my point in your rebuttal.

Actually no science didn't give those things at all. It gave technology to do that but science its self did not make them. That was us. You really don't know anything about science do you.

Actually I am speaking from knowledge get over it.

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Virtual Particle
When materialists make irresponsible negative generalizations, it is evidence that they believe science the way a zealot believes doctrine. It is irrational. Yet, believing that they are the rational one is important to them. It is quite a paradox.

Science like Religion answers to Politics (And the other matter as well) some might suggest that when it comes to both one should play the felid. It is important to respect and take seriously ones roots; it is also good to learn about other points of view as well.

History should never be taken for granted and neither should competition but we should come to terms with the amount of information that is really out there and how to apply it more effectively.

Any thoughts?

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Virtual Particle
Life experience is subjective. Your interpretations of events are subject to a lot of factors such as prior knowledge and preconceived beliefs and if you cannot explain it your likely to devise some way to explain it. Experience is subjective and gives no basis for an argument on such a thing. Biology, however, shows the brain and the body are one in the same.

New Scientist: Mind Fiction - Why the brain tells tall tales.

That is correct our nerve endings are also a part of the brain we probably apply them in ways related to thinking we usually do not consider and there is also the cluster of nerves near the stomach. Life is no subjective we are born we live and we die that is not a subjective event there is a history and information it is recorded and again not a subjective event. If your suggesting that the individual is not actually integral because there is nothing between brain/body and everything else that actually is a subjective interpretation. Science does not suggest something is impossible it only presents issues of probability; it’s a basic tenet of science.

In respect to illusions Mattshark one can bury ones head to all possible things. That includes the ones that there is nothing out there beyond what we know at any particular time in the past.

Any thoughts?

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