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Luis Javier López Arredondo


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Where do thoughts come from?

Where do thoughts come from?
A thought active connections in the brain or vice versa?
If I control my thoughts, do I control my brain connections?
Consciously I do not control my brain... Are my thoughts random emanating of pure subconscious?
Do I really control my thoughts?

Topics: mind philosophy

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  • Nov 27 2012: Which types of thoughts? are there different "types"? When i think it generally comes to me in language maybe accompanied by an image. Where do they come from? I couldn't tell you and I'm very skeptical of any answer given. It seems as though when i think some part of me finds the words i wish to express. However im not consciously aware of how this is happening. Im sure the neuroscientists will point to the structures of the brain in generating thought and use some very convincing evidence collected that when certain brain areas are stimulated certain thoughts emerge. But this really just passes the buck to subconscious selection of thoughts and i havnt the slightest idea how this works. Then we evoke evolution we have thoughts that are adaptive. What about mental illness? Some thoughts are then maladaptive? This train of thought I'm using eventually leads you to dualism or some strange form of it. I think modern science points to the fact we are not in control of our thoughts and I have no idea what this means. Is there some other part of me that selects the thoughts i employ? It seems as though thoughts, ideas, and images form from the firing of neurons but how does a chemical create an image in my mind? How does 1 milivolt and electrical activity in my brain create the complexity of thought? Its funny scientists say we only understand roughly 4 percent of the universe. The brain computes 4 billion bits of information a second and we are aware of only 2,000 of those. In my opinion there is a dark matter or energy that we don't understand which functions in the brain. Theres something we are missing which may be out of the reach of our biological structure. To summarize theres only so much one can understand through introspection if anything at all. Theres only so much we can understand by studying another if the two could ever converge maybe we get an answer.
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      Nov 27 2012: Hi Brian,

      What if there is no duality? What if the subjective sense is just an emergent property?

      My reason for offering this is from programming a bunch of neural net models years ago and just watching them. I could tweak the "1-milivolt" trigger and various synaptic potentiation parameters until the nets began to oscillate .. in continuously evolving patterns. These were pretty dumb neurons with only 8 synapses each, but I got a sense of observing something "alive". Specially the closed cycle networks that were more akin to cellular automata. Since then, it has been easy to percieve the "sentience" in things such as insects and animals. At the moment I am going through the process of "making friends" with the local magpies .. even with such small brains, they have enough social wiring to respond with the convergent self model. Does it really matter if thought is separate from the simple cycling of signals?
      I do enjoy Sapolski's ideas abut mal-adaptation .. he seems to be pointing at contextual advantage for some of the pathologies.
      But I would take the 4% notion with a huge grain of salt - in the face of the infinite, all knowledge is infinatesimal ;) this allows for endless exploration - a thing that gives me great joy for some reason!
      • Nov 27 2012: Hey Mitch, man that must have been thrilling pushing those synapses into chaos and seeing them dance to life. I imagine the magpies will enjoy your company Mitch let me know when your systems sync. Im not sure if it matters if thoughts are separate from signal cycling also not sure what the implications would be. Mitch it most likely is an emergent property some adaptive measure that allows us to see what it is we need for some reason unknown to me. Maybe just the way we can understand reality as most things seem to exist in duality. Maybe because we have 2 brain hemispheres two arms, legs, eyes, ears etc...

        Evolutionary psychology is a very interesting field and there may be advantages associated with certain pathologies. I just grabbed my salt shaker and realized the pieces were all to small to be taken with the 4% claim. As we continuously search inward we simultaneously search outward and new structures enter our conscious world. If we look we see that 4% is a number based on having some ideas about what 100% is and ill need some water to digest the size of the salt rock needed to swallow that. I was just vaguely trying to connect our understanding of the universe with our understanding of the brain. Which roughly holds the same amount of neurons as stars in our galaxy. In the mean time i sit back and revel in the beauty of our universe. I do my best to feel the joy you speak of Mitch. That joy is one we feel as children that mustn't be lost. When we lose it a death drive ensues and our atoms wish to return to a singular state. If we stay as children, always looking for new answers sitting in awe of the complex chaos and peeling the endless layers of function, we live on in our greatest form.
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          Nov 27 2012: Yes, it's a brilliant life if we open to it!
          I think that the sense of duality is simply a result of "self". In the case of us humans, the self is defined by our skin .. most "selves" have some equivalent of a defining membrane - or at least a definition zone to isolate the pattern.
          Just lately I am exploring the notion of entropic loops. This is the principle of "self organising systems". If one assumes that all available energy is the result of continuous entropy, then the principle of self requires the delay of entropy - a zone of "negentropy" in which to become defined. However, the universal gradient of entropy is preserved - so for every bubble of negentropy, there must be a balancing zone of super-entropy.
          Since entropy is the universal active principle, the negentropic zone is the manifestation, while the super-entropic zone is teh "field of potential". In this way, we get a good understanding of the difference between actual and potential. It explains such things as sub-atomic particles and electro magnetic and gravitational fields.
          All that lies on, or above the universal entropic gradient(negentropy) is manifest .. matter and actual energy, all that lies below the gradient is potential.
          The point at which the slef-wave intersects the gradient is where we find the defining membrane.
          It also explains environmental niche - a super-entropic field potential is more conducive to the formation of a self.
          In this way you see a fractal self-similarity in orders of reality - the actual/potential waves populate the potential fields in descending fractal layers
          If you can imagine a self as a wave on the gradient of entropy, you can see explaination for a lot of things - for instance how an Electron, being the potential field of the proton can only be described as a gausian blur of possibility. And the proton itself can be observed to occupy a gausian zone. It also explains the collapse of the probablity wave - measurement transforms potential to actual through self
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      Nov 27 2012: Hello Brian,
      Yes it seems we have so much around us (spiritually) that we are not aware of and thus no way to use it. We can have a few thoughts about something, but it may take a long time to bring them into words.
      I'd like to describe it as having a funnel to flow our thoughts to our lips, in so many more words.
      And the more languages we know, the more funnels we have. :)

      This is our view of the human mind, which we see as a distinct realm from the material world. Maybe it helps to bring that environment into reality.
      http://webhome.idirect.com/~abraam/documents/TheHumanMind.pdf I hope it helps,

      In the Bible there are three scenarios portraying the human mind, the Ark, the Tabernacle and the Temple. But that is a whole other story.
      • Nov 27 2012: Swedenborg is an interesting man although I'm not the biggest of fan of Christianity( or any religion) I think that contrary to illusion there can be some truth found in these tales. Swedenborg searched for truth and believed he found it. Look to Freud and you also see three organs of mind playing complex roles, its strange how certain models despise each other yet mirror one another. Thanks for the link...

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