I'm reading The Roots of Coincidence by Arthur Koestler and at some point he cites a theory that states that conscious will (ie. the effect of the mind on the behaviour of the brain and body) is brought upon by psi processes, PK and ESP acting on one's own brain (as if we were a ghost operating the machine that is our brain), and external convenvional PK and ESP phenomenon would be instances of these processes acting upon our environment instead. In other words, we are external to our brain (or if internal, fundamentally separate at least) and exhert will by operating it using what is popularly known as psi, but could very well be a basic biological mechanism of all living beings.
Have you read of similar theories in other books and belief systems? I'd like to know.
Also, if you're temped to argue against this theory I mention, OK (I don't even assume is correct), but first do read the book (chapter two), because otherwise you will be missing most of the exposition, arguments and scientific research cited by Koestler. And I won't waste my time repeating them.
The esoteric point of view on this as described by Alice Bailey is that spirit/awareness interacts with organic matter to produce consciousness. As science hasn't yet been able to come up with anything which contradicts this, or proposes a better model, I guess Koestler was on to something. I haven't read the book but it sounds about right afaik.
>In other words, we are external to our brain
Just to come back to this very briefly as it's way past my bedtime, this depends on the definition of 'we'. At the most obvious level, we are a product of our brain in that our sense of self can be altered by drugs, stroke, surgery, etc. At the other end of the spectrum, if you believe the reports of out of body experience, we do not rely on our brains for awareness. Somewhere, somehow, this interaction between 'pure' awareness and the brain is being played out, resulting in our normal waking consciousness.
I must point out this is not Koestler's theory. He merely cites it (and he makes a point of not pronouncing himself as to whether he considers it "on the right track"). I did find it mindblowing though.
The thing is it's only will which is external to the brain (because it has not been found either as an explicit mechanism nor as an emergent deterministic phenomenon derived from brain chemistry). Perception, emotion and everything else does have an origin in the material brain, thus it is affected by drugs. It would seem "we" are will plus everything else, being the will the analogous of the "mind" here.
Drugs can alter your actions, but not by directly affecting your will, rather by affecting all the data your will has to make a decision on which action to take (emotions, external and internal perception, etc.)
Is damn well past my bedtime too...
>In other words, we are external to our brain
>(or if internal, fundamentally separate at least)
>and exert will by operating it using what is popularly known as psi
>but could very well be a basic biological mechanism of all living beings
Psi isn't biological, it's biomechanical.
I haven't read his book, but I'm intimately familiar with the idea since it's one of the hypotheses I came up with while studying consciousness. He's on the right track, but he's jumping the gun by like seven or eight levels of abstraction, minimum.
The long and the short of it is that psi being real is not evidence that psi is fundamental to awareness.
>he makes a point of not pronouncing himself as to whether he considers it "on the right track"
Then he's created another opinion piece on consciousness.
>it's only will which is external to the brain
This is also wrong. Will is functional within a given reality, not without it. You can't have will in a void.
I recently located the one part of consciousness that is definitely outside of the brain (reality as we know it) regardless of all supposition or argument, and it's not will. It actually has nothing to do with will at all. It's nice to believe in timeless will, but if there were such a thing as timeless will, it would force itself on reality in an observable/measurable way regardless of scientific analysis. We don't see this happen, so we know realities are localized.
How can you be so strongly opinionated on stuff we know nothing about for sure? Why do you assume will would have the power of willing itself into existence? Please do share your "findings" (and how you came to find them). I think the scientist who came up with this was just trying to justify the idea of a soul, a source of free will that is attached to the mechanical brain and operates it throughout our lives. I don't really care for this because it is repeated to death by countless theories and religions.
In any case, what I found interesting is the notion that what we call psi (the hability to influence the world with your mind) would be the same mechanism used to exert will on the brain. As it were, we would be possessing our bodies. This would imply the body (brain included) is just as external to us as the rest of the world. For some reason we're limited in our power of influence to it. I find this really amusing.
The nature of consciousness is one of the few areas where science still has a lot to discover. I wish thr bastards would focus more on it... I mean, it's nice to know what gives matter its mass, but still...
By the way, all this is just touched in the book as an introduction into the explanations people have come up for the underlying physical mechanisms that may be at the source of ESP and the like. The book focuses on the concept sincronicity and the nature of chance and coincidence.
>How can you be so strongly opinionated on
>stuff we know nothing about for sure?
That's your problem, not mine.
>Why do you assume will would have the power of willing itself into existence?
I don't and it doesn't, for the record. Something in existence must provoke will before will manifests. I explicitly said the will doesn't come from void.
>Please do share your "findings" (and how you came to find them)
Interesting use of parenthesis. Would you even need the former if I'd given you the latter?
>just trying to justify the idea of a soul
Yes, as is common among the pseudoscientific community. In reality, souls can be erased, torn apart, corrupted, and all manner of ills that befall existent things. The newage movement is a plague precisely because it ignores every spiritual threat. This is why the newage notion of consciousness is useless for any real metaphysical discussions.
>a source of free will
This can come form inside the universe as easily as it can come from outside. Free will isn't lessened by physics, but explained.
People need to lighten the fuck up about this shit. Free will can't cease to exist due to failure to believe in it. We aren't all magical fairies like that.
>I don't really care for this because it is repeated to death by countless theories and religions.
>The book focuses on the concept sincronicity and the nature of chance and coincidence.
Eh.... I guess that's about all what I'd predict.
>interesting is that psi would be the mechanism used to exert will on the brain
Put that way, it is actually fairly interesting to think about. I've long since surpassed that concept, but it does have its interesting thoughts. We'll need to get some pretty advanced nanotech before we can measure it properly, but no; psi echoes the brain. Psi is the most primitive/weakest form of tangible extradimensional interaction. Consciousness and will can embed themselves in physical material as easily as anywhere else.
OP, poster 2 here again.
> It would seem "we" are will plus everything else, being the will the analogous of the "mind" here.
I used "awareness" to mean the same thing. The analog from Chinese thought is the concept "I", pronounced 'yee'. It is usually translated as 'mind' or intent'.
>This would imply the body (brain included) is just as external to us as the rest of the world. For some reason we're limited in our power of influence to it. I find this really amusing.
Is that limited in our influence of our own bodies as well? Yes, a source of amusement, frustration, and hard work. The idea of 'being in your body' has crept in to western new-agey ideas, and is a bit more clearly understood in Chinese martial arts. Some of these train the idea of bringing the 'I' (yee) more into the body, giving better control and more efficient action.
>if there were such a thing as timeless will, it would force itself on reality in an observable/measurable way regardless of scientific analysis. We don't see this happen
My take on this is that there is, and we do see it in measurable form; it's life. Many cultures have the idea in their creation myths of the creator breathing life into the physical world to create living beings. The power of life to survive, heal the individual, evolve new species, inhabit new environments, grow and flourish in all manner of inhospitable conditions is awesome. My felt sense of these processes is that the whole of everything has one purpose, which is life, expressing. 'Will' or 'mind' or any of the other words used above for the same idea are the motivating factor. Will/Life is constantly exerting this 'pressure' to 'force itself on reality' as you neatly put it, looking for any way to express and exist, like water finding any way possible in to occupy a space.
>The power of life to survive, heal the individual, evolve new species, inhabit new environments, grow and flourish in all manner of inhospitable conditions is awesome.
With creation myths, the object of the myth builds a sort of reverence. It's nice to feel respect for the creator of all life, but I think it inadequate.
The way I see, if life had no cosmic origin and was simply a result of life itself creating itself.. Working its way into every crack and crevice in the universe and spawning itself in its own desperate bid to live. Struggling every day to survive, to live, to grow and raise children. Doing and inventing ways to do all the things it needs to do to survive and make life possible for succeeding generation. As you said...
The power of life to survive, heal, evolve and inhabit new environments is amazing.
To me, it would be more beautiful a thing than any creation myth ever was or ever could be.
To me, pure natural emergence is beauty.
Can't argue with that. I suppose it just comes down to the ah, minor detail of whether the web has a weaver. And even if we got the answer to that we might not understand it.
My experience of mind is that it is not just personal, we draw from and contribute to a field. My assumption in experiencing this as coming from 'beyond' the physical is that it is part of this cosmic drive-to-be. But in reading your comments it makes me question that. The mechanics of the source of the field could be human, or planetary. It's good to keep an open mind and keep questioning.
Thanks, I appreciate the understanding. For me, I'm apparently a clinic psychopath, so I don't have any of the empathetic mirror neuron reactions that make people feel connected in the way you describe. From what I've learned about empathy since I found out that I lack it, I can "see" the field you're talking about, but it doesn't "connect" with me. It honestly seems like it can't, and I'm not too sure why. It might be neurological, spiritual, both, or just some mental wall that happened to develop based on how I was raised. I'm not even sure that medical science could help resolve the mystery in its current state. In some way I feel connected to the formal study of consciousness BECAUSE it seems like the only way I'll ever be able to feel that mental field that the rest of humanity "seems" to exist in. (In reality, there way too many diverse perspectives for me to believe such a field is an at all inherent to reality.)
Like, even right now, I'm afraid that my saying this will have irreversible effects on your psyche. I'm literally afraid that I'll somehow warp your psyche and/or perspective beyond repair. I KNOW that it shouldn't be possible, but it FEELS like a possible outcome for me, from my metaphysically ignorant state. I try to get over it by reasoning about several types of possible outcomes, but the feeling won't go away until I actually post this and see how you take it.
Different guy here.
Interesting. You seem to be the first authentic self-proclaimed psychopath (inb4 DSM semantics) I've ever seen on 4chan.
>I recently located the one part of consciousness that is definitely outside of the brain (reality as we know it) regardless of all supposition or argument, and it's not will. It actually has nothing to do with will at all.
Go on. Is there timeless existence? Is all existence one? The fact that there is order, that the universe is inherently ordered in every way, on every level, suggests what exactly?
>It's nice to believe in timeless will, but if there were such a thing as timeless will, it would force itself on reality in an observable/measurable way regardless of scientific analysis. We don't see this happen, so we know realities are localized.
Is there only one existence of time? This instant? The now? So only one possible outcome. One occurrence. A deterministic, simultaneous, universal reality?
Is there one universal will without choice, but a singular, instantaneous existence?