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Plugged In: The 8 Circuit Model of Consciousness

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posted on Jun, 8 2009 @ 12:15 PM
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Here are three videos where Robert Anton Wilson explains the 8 Circuit Model of Consciousness originally theorized by Dr. Timothy Leary. These make a nice introduction to the concept. In basis it states that human consciousness exists in eight layers of development, beginning at simple mammalian instinct up through levels of conscious intent and beyond.

Immediately this theory was rejected by established science and psychiatry, but a recent study at Johns Hopkins University points in the opposite direction as anyone more familiar with either Wilson or Leary will know that they predicted and espoused the same results themselves. Those results being long term benefits associated with particular pharmacological substances stemming directly from mystical experiences while taking those substances. Which is to say that these substances demonstrate a 'gateway' experience to opening higher circuits.

But that is not the only way to achieve the results, and the above not at all endorsed by myself but presented as simply an example.

Meditation, pranayama, chanting, singing, dancing, laughing, sex... All of these are methods to explore and open the higher circuitry of human consciousness and I think it time the idea is more recognized.

Perhaps we would find meditation more useful if we recognize it not simply from a mystical or metaphysical point of view, but rather as 'reprogramming' ourselves.

If the idea seems to make little sense now, perhaps it will be clearer after watching the videos. Enjoy and, please, discuss


Also if the videos are 'unwatchable' for you, there are written explanations further below.

And I plan of making this thread an ongoing pursuit of mine, so if it interests you, keep checking back. Thanks


Robert Anton Wilson 9a: Circuits 1-4


Robert Anton Wilson 9b: Circuits 5-8


Robert Anton Wilson 9c: The Next Step



[edit on 8/6/09 by TravelerintheDark]




posted on Jun, 8 2009 @ 01:13 PM
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Interesting videos. Although i wish they would take the echo out from his voice, its very annoying. I had a hard time watching them cause of it.



posted on Jun, 8 2009 @ 01:25 PM
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I agree, the echo makes it a little hard to understand at times, but a pair of headphones if available help. Here's a thread with minimal written descriptions of the 8 circuits from an external source.

Timothy Leary’s 8 circuit model of Consciousness



posted on Jun, 8 2009 @ 05:57 PM
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As I Understand It: Circuits 1-4

This is my basic interpretation of the first four circuits and the basis for how I see their impact on social structure and how individuals as well as society as a collective use the circuits to create and maintain individual and collective reality.

This also may be useful for anyone who finds the videos unintelligible for bad audio and the previous threads descriptions too 'dry' or simply doesn't have time and likes things quick and concise


And because I like doing it.

Circuit 1 - Nurture and Nutrition: This is the primary circuit in all mammals. The first need. Out of the womb and onto the nipple providing the two basic elements absolutely and unequivocally essential to survival. Love and food.

Circuit 2 - Structure and Stricture: The secondary circuit is near primary in all mammals and where are formed the concepts of social structure. When we get old enough to fend for ourselves on a small scale, as toddlers for humans, this is the circuit that opens up the world into two groups of needs. Theirs and mine.

Circuit 3 - Symbols and Semantics: This is an outgrowth of Circuit 2, where social structure moves beyond primary need and becomes a collective for sharing thoughts and ideas. And so this circuit allows us an understanding of symbols from crude to complex, all of which are abstract and therefore prone to semantic arguments.

Circuit 4 - Reproduction and Continuity: If it hasn't been noticed yet, these circuits also correspond to stages of human development right up to 'adulthood' or sexual maturity. This is the last circuit of truly social imprinting where we learn to rules of how to woo a mate and therefore maintain the social structure by creating more society dwellers. We also learn some of the most important social rules in what in appropriate and not.

To be continued...

[edit on 8/6/09 by TravelerintheDark]



posted on Jun, 8 2009 @ 06:28 PM
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Just for fun, this is looking a lot like an astrology chart, (the circuits) the next have to do with
partnership marriage cooperation, death dying transformation, spirituality philosophy humanity, purpose, invention, service, etc? higher concepts and creation from basic needs? More social in definition? Spiritual for sure. Outer world vs inner world??



posted on Jun, 8 2009 @ 06:32 PM
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oh yeah, that is unfortunate. what is with that? Maybe I am just sensitive. Almost impossible for me to comprehend. Is there another video that might be easier to listen to?



posted on Jun, 8 2009 @ 06:37 PM
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reply to post by seagrass
 


Yes, indeed seagrass

The upper 4 begin to relate to experiential relationships lacking the 'hard' definitions of the first 4. They begin to delve into spirituality and consciousness on a level that seeks beyond being a part of the group and moves into broader concerns about existence itself.

It can also be said that the upper 4 are where human evolution is occurring. At least from my point of view.

They can also be related to the chakras as well as modern schools of psychiatry, and I have no doubt other schools of thought as well.

It seems obvious to me that we are talking about ideas that have been inherently understood and simply reinterpreted over the centuries. Perhaps its the 'modernity' of the 8 Circuit Model that draws me in. It just intuitively makes sense to me.

Edited to add: Unfortunately there aren't any other videos. Sorry about that


[edit on 8/6/09 by TravelerintheDark]



posted on Jun, 8 2009 @ 07:09 PM
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Originally posted by TravelerintheDark




Circuit 1 - Nurture and Nutrition: This is the primary circuit in all mammals. The first need. Out of the womb and onto the nipple providing the two basic elements absolutely and unequivocally essential to survival. Love and food.
In astrology charts these are represented by 6 houses; 1. A born creative personality/persona/appearance which stays somewhat constant. Childlike adventure and creativity represented by Aries/Mars desire and fire of life. 2. money and resources, basic needs, luxuries, food, taste/choices in objects, etc represented by Taurus/Venus earthly delights.
Nutrition falls under the 6th house (Virgo and health) and food is associated with Taurus. Love falls under Venus, and there are types of love which fall under other planetary objects, houses and points. Taurus is ruled by Venus. But the 4th and 5th houses rule home, family, mothers, children, fun, sex for pleasure, and entertainment. Although also associated with food in terms of nurturing.


Circuit 2 - Structure and Stricture: The secondary circuit is near primary in all mammals and where are formed the concepts of social structure. When we get old enough to fend for ourselves on a small scale, as toddlers for humans, this is the circuit that opens up the world into two groups of needs. Theirs and mine.
The third house is represented by Gemini as communication, early education, short commutes, and neighbors and community. This is essentially the house we learn our basic communication skills, and something which evolves over time. Mostly as an inner experience and processing of information as a "style". I think this would be represented as same, only incorporation of the childlike persona as "me" and the communication house as the ..."but then there is them".


Circuit 3 - Symbols and Semantics: This is an outgrowth of Circuit 2, where social structure moves beyond primary need and becomes a collective for sharing thoughts and ideas. And so this circuit allows us an understanding of symbols from crude to complex, all of which are abstract and therefore prone to semantic arguments.
This is represented by the third house as well. Communication style based on personality and experience. The argument would be placed in the 9th house, however, of philosophy and teaching. Higher education and experience based on travel outside the familiar environment. Ideas that are based in philosophy. This is where common symbols and their meanings may altered by others. Or by belief systems acquired through others. Such as religion or science.


Circuit 4 - Reproduction and Continuity: If it hasn't been noticed yet, these circuits also correspond to stages of human development right up to 'adulthood' or sexual maturity. This is the last circuit of truly social imprinting where we learn to rules of how to woo a mate and therefore maintain the social structure by creating more society dwellers. We also learn some of the most important social rules in what in appropriate and not.
This is represented by the fifth house of sex for pleasure vs sex for procreation. It is the house of romance vs the 7th house of partnership. One of the reasons people "change" once they are married. The wooing would happen in the 5th house, vs the structure of a partnership and marriage in the 7th. Same for business partnerships or other such partnerships based in cooperation.
The house that rules sex for procreation is based in a more primal urge to reproduce and experience sex as a form of spirituality. It also rules transformation, death, cycles of life. and is the beginnings of attitudes that require we ask those deep questions of "why".


[edit on 8-6-2009 by seagrass]



posted on Jun, 8 2009 @ 08:04 PM
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reply to post by seagrass
 


It seems obvious that there has almost always been a human desire to understand each other and we've always been keen on devising systems to make sense of our experiences. I think the value of a system only bears out over time though.

Astrology is a good example as its been around for thousands of years. And more than a cursory glance shows there is depth there that is hard to explain as superstitious.

Phrenology is another good example, which is determining human character by measuring bumps on the head. Yeah, not so much belief in that one these days, and I think it's obvious why


If the system doesn't work, it doesn't last.



posted on Jun, 8 2009 @ 08:11 PM
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Originally posted by TravelerintheDark
reply to post by seagrass
 


It seems obvious that there has almost always been a human desire to understand each other and we've always been keen on devising systems to make sense of our experiences. I think the value of a system only bears out over time though.

Astrology is a good example as its been around for thousands of years. And more than a cursory glance shows there is depth there that is hard to explain as superstitious.

Phrenology is another good example, which is determining human character by measuring bumps on the head. Yeah, not so much belief in that one these days, and I think it's obvious why


If the system doesn't work, it doesn't last.

I believe it started as a way to understand nature. Plants and growing seasons, why and when animals move. The seasons of weather and then it progressed to wanting to understand personality. A way to plan and control nature, a way to understand the cycles. They saw coincidence and began to find correlations, not unlike science and psychology today.



posted on Jun, 8 2009 @ 08:38 PM
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I believe the understanding of symbolism comes before language and structure. Dogs understand pointing as having a meaning. Horses can learn through symbols. Dogs understand that if your eyes are closed you can't see, and they take the treat that you told them not to take.

I believe that symbolic understanding is innate and evolutionary and is why it can be said to be a universal language. I think our brains are wired for symbolism before the meaning takes on a social structure. Does that make sense?



posted on Jun, 8 2009 @ 09:15 PM
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I'm going to apologize in advance for being long-winded



I was thinking about this before starting the thread...

First, I think 'symbol' refers to anything that is an expression. As it says in Prometheus Rising (and, man, do I love getting my head around this one)...

The map is not the territory.

Which is to say another way, as an example, the word 'tree' is not a tree. It isn't even close. It's just a symbol that is understood to mean something we call a tree. A dog's growl isn't the action of staying away from its food, but it can symbolically represent that.

So I think you're right that we begin to understand symbols before we understand social structure. A baby learns to cry to get food and attention. It isn't thinking about what mom is doing when it's crying, it simply wants what it wants and cries for it. It associates a symbolic meaning with vocalization. I think the same can be said for any other mammal that whimpers, whines, etc before taking any real step beyond mother's comfort.

But I don't think this negates the order of the circuits as they're listed. What I think it really illustrates is that the rudiments of each higher circuit are inherent in the lower circuits.

Such as saying that a mother/child relationship forms the most rudimentary basis of social structure. And the symbolic crying for mother forms the basics for understanding all the vague specifics of symbolism and semantics. And they fall in that order. First we learn to cling to mother, then we learn how to get her attention. And also that the more ordered a species social structure, the more understanding it has of more complex symbols. So I think they follow each other.

This brings me to a bit of a conundrum and lead me to specifically leave a point out of my explanations of the circuits. That is that conceptual time falls to the 3rd circuit. I'm not so sure about this...

My reasoning is that we can teach most mammals with a higher social order a variety of symbolic meanings, but we can't teach them to tell time. Or we haven't figured out how. I believe the idea of conceptualizing time comes at a higher circuit, but I'd like to hear other opinions if there are any


[edit on 8/6/09 by TravelerintheDark]



posted on Jun, 8 2009 @ 09:24 PM
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Time. I have seen shows about dogs that go to the window when it is time for their human to come home. They argue that it may be that they hear the car engine.. or are somehow telepathic or in spiritual connection with them. But in the show I saw, they went before the car should have been able to be heard, or when they came other than car. I would think they can sense time, but might not want to know how to communicate time to us. It may be as rudimentary as an internal clock they are more attuned to.



posted on Jun, 8 2009 @ 09:27 PM
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My lab is usually waiting and panting in the drive way when I get home. I can tell he heard me coming somehow. Knows my engine. But he runs out to greet me and is usually in about the same spot when I pull in. It makes me think he recognizes my engine over all other explorers, because I am not on a schedule. I don't come home at the same time everyday.

[edit on 8-6-2009 by seagrass]

[edit on 8-6-2009 by seagrass]



posted on Jun, 8 2009 @ 09:29 PM
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I think that explains it for me

I suppose a sense of time is inherent in social animals. Though conceptualizing it the way humans do may be strictly human, which also involves a rather complex system of symbols. So I'd have to say that it is probably right where ti belongs.

Edited to add:I've heard of the same thing, which I suppose would say that at least some animals can conceptualize the future. My cats know that they are fed around the same time, and they react at the same time every day. So this might actually be a social function developed specifically in relation to living in a human environment. Which makes sense for a social animal like a dog or even a cat to adapt to social structures outside its norm.

Is this 'time'? Well, it certainly appears to be a concept of future events. Maybe in animals other than humans this is the lead-in to the human concept of clocks, calenders, etc. which falls in directly with complex symbolism.

I wonder if there are any correlations of this behavior in wild animals?

As for telepathic connections, I think that's even more interesting as it relates to domestic and wild animals. I know my cats 'sense' my mood on some level.

[edit on 8/6/09 by TravelerintheDark]



posted on Jun, 8 2009 @ 10:05 PM
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S&F!

Leary and Wilson are both pioneers of the ultimate frontier: our consciousness itself.

I'm a big fan of "Prometheus Rising" and I have "Quantum Psychology" sitting on this computer desk right now, along with the Bhagavad Gita and the Corpus Hermeticum. Tools of the trade.



The map is not the territory.


Douglas Hofstadter also expounded upon this brilliantly in "Godel, Escher, Bach," approaching consciousness from the perspective of an artificial intelligence scientist. It's just as thought-provoking as RAW's works.


Thanks for posting the videos, I'll watch them.



posted on Jun, 8 2009 @ 10:14 PM
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reply to post by bsbray11
 


Thanks!

It took me a while to pick up Prometheus Rising after abandoning books for a while (I decided in my own way that the map was not the territory, I suppose), but once I did found it to be a work of true brilliance. I've read it through twice and picked at it consistently since buying it.

It's amazing in its compression of what is understood about human consciousness and to me also in how it can expand to provide an incredible understanding of the human mind, which of course relates directly to human behavior and human potential.

It's great fun to sit and pick at the model. Thanks for joining the discussion



posted on Jun, 8 2009 @ 10:31 PM
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I also watched a show about a woman, she appeared on Oprah, who had such a good ear for tone, that she figured out that babies have distinct cries that actually communicate a specific need. A mother with a good natural instinct might be able to sense inherently what they mean. A mother who doesn't would soon be frustrated by the cries and use a system of trial and error.
That ability to communicate between mother and child may be a factor in a child's ability to communicate later in life? I don't know... but if a child is born with an ability to communicate, then we are wired in many ways for it. I have had experience with telepathy with my own children. Call it coincidence, but after a few times you begin to wonder.



[edit on 8-6-2009 by seagrass]



posted on Jun, 8 2009 @ 10:51 PM
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reply to post by seagrass
 


Excellent stuff. It made perfect sense to me with the demonstration of the 'neh' sound since it mimics sucking. So I would imagine other cries probably are as illustrative.

Having been around a number of mothers and their babies, I've known those who seem to instinctively pick up on the meaning of their baby's cries as well as those who seem totally confounded and work through trial and error.

I think it raises an interesting idea in how this can impact communication later in life. Because it seems apparent to me that the imprints placed on the first 4 circuits are those that stick with us throughout our life. It also seems apparent to me that the lower the circuit negatively imprinted, the more detrimental the outcome.



posted on Jun, 8 2009 @ 11:46 PM
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Foundations are symbolic and literal. The beginning of most cycles of growth need to be solid and/or healthy for most things to have a fighting chance. It makes sense to me. But then genetically some are naturally stronger in certain abilities. Some communication is a focus, others their needs, others social purpose.. But the basics are represented in that model for a strong inner world. Now the next 4 circuits are an outward expression of those on the physical world?



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