reply to post by Bravo111
In fact YOU DO NOT make these decisions, your conciousness just PR's it to you that way.
Were that the case, then why would you need a consciousness to begin with? If we're completely at the mercy of our sub-conscious, it would serve no
point. I mean, it's circular logic. Your consciousness is only there to justify to the consciousness the actions of other systems it cannot detect or
influence? Otherwise, you would have to presuppose an additional observer whom are both just along for the ride, but convincing each other they're in
In terms of a simple demonstration - recite the alphabet out loud. A to Z. Easy huh? Now do it again, but this time, only say every other letter.
That's the difference between unconsciously drawing straight memory in well established neural paths, and pulling it up into your mental palate for
The conscious mind is the top layer of interaction among the various specialized brain regions. The "abstract" mental construct which takes in
sensory input and ideas, manipulates them, as well as directs the body. It's responsible for short and long term planning, as well as a measure of
selective memory recall for the construction of mental models - be it testing an idea in your head or constructing a sentience to convey ideas. While
an idea may just "come to you", you can also "think" about it to pull specific data from memory to apply to your mental models. This wouldn't be
possible if the consciousness was just along for the ride to provide passive commentary while the subconscious drove the body.
While the conscious mind is constructed entirely from the interplay of various subconscious cognitive faculties, and as a top layer of these
interactions it can (to various degrees) both affect and be affected by the sub-conscious. On the one hand, you have instances such as the delay of
gratification - the managing of desire against the anticipation and prediction of greater reward later as an abstract concept. On the other hand, you
have instances of "uncontrollable urges" despite promises of greater reward for abstinence or threat of punishment. This is the difference between a
"Crime of Passion" being forgivable, and a pre-meditated crime being given extra punishment.
In a simple (though purposfully flawed) analogy; it's similar to the rider and a horse traveling a familiar path. The rider provides the choice in
direction, but isn't always necessarily in control. The horse may be in total control, but is managed and bends to the will of the rider in most
instances. However the flaw is in recognition of separation of "Horse" and "Rider". In truth, the conscious mind and the subconscious mind are one
in the same. The reason why it appears to be separate is, perhaps, due to information overload. Our mental abstracts simply aren't capable of
accommodating that much information, so only the most relevant information to constructing specific types of relevant mental models are recognized.
Among the many other tasks we're unaware of, we don't notice the pattern recognition processes our brains preform in order to recognize a face.
(See: Margret Thatcher illusion), yet we can engage in conscious pattern searches OF someone's facial expression - such as paying attention for
slight tells in a poker face in order to identify a bluff.
So perhaps consciousness may be a mere illusion of memory and pattern recognition; noticing how our thoughts and our bodies seemingly move according
to our perceived will. Or perhaps it is a result of "noise filtering" of information irrelevant to those mental models too prevent. Or perhaps both.
Consciousness is a tricky subject, which hasn't really been properly explained yet. Although, it is clear that consciousness is not some separate
phenomena seated in some unique brain region - that the only difference between Conscious and Subconscious is awareness - and that free will is an
illusion - although I would argue that the loss of free will is moot, because while we can make mental models and predictions of behavior in response
to certain stimuli, we cannot even begin to conceptualize all of the factors needed for a perfect prediction. There will always be a degree of error,
and we can always be wrong. Married men should be well used to this concept by now. Thus, free will remains a useful tool for social interaction.
(for the record, in human terms, Windows (mind layer) was hacked, partitoned and compressed eons ago)
What is this supposed to mean?
[edit on 25-9-2009 by Lasheic]