Was ancient man schizophrenic? Voice of God and Jayne's "bicameral mind"

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posted on Oct, 26 2013 @ 04:36 PM
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I stumbled across this theory while searching the internet, and found it extremely interesting. Even though it is far fetched it actually has some evidence that leads to the conclusion. More importantly it opens a wealth of possible concepts that makes is extremely innovative concept.

www.bizcharts.com...


Jaynes bluntly declares "There is in general no consciousness in the ILIAD." Analyzing Homer's great epic, Jaynes came to the conclusion that the characters of the Trojan siege did not have conscious minds, no introspection, as we know it in the modern human. [Julian Jaynes, THE ORIGIN OF CONSCIOUSNESS IN THE BREAKDOWN OF THE BICAMERAL MIND, Houghton Mifflin Company, 1976, p. 69]

Whether Achilles or Agamemnon, there was no sense of subjectivity. Rather they were men whom the gods pushed about like robots. The gods sang epics through their lips. Jayne declares that these Iliadic heroes heard "voices," real speech and directions from the gods--as clearly as those diagnosed epileptic or schizophrenic today.
....
Pursuing the bicameral mind, Jaynes focuses on the corpus callosum, the major inter-connector between the brain's hemispheres. In human brains the corpus callosum can be likened to a small bridge, a band of transverse fibers, only slightly more than one-eighth of an inch in diameter. This bridge "collects from most of the temporal lobe cortex but particularly the middle gyrus of the temporal lobe in Wernicke's area." And it was this bridge that served as the means by which the "gods" who dwelled in one hemisphere of the human brain were able to give "directions" to the other hemisphere. It is like thinking of the "two hemispheres of the brain almost as two individuals." Hence the bicameral mind! [Ibid, p. 117]


www.thecrimson.com...


Jaynes finds supporting evidence in the surviving remnants of almost every major world religion and civilization. Direct interaction between gods and men appears in the artwork, literature and religious traditions of most ancient cultures. "Early civilizations were all theocracies with God at the top," Jaynes says, adding that "when they talk about the 'word of god,' they actually heard him in their hallucinations." Jaynes points out that the statuary of many pagan religions depicts idols with mouths agape, as if the gods were speaking to the people.

However, Jaynes notes that idols produced in later periods consistently portray mute gods, a fact that conveniently fits into his theory of mind evolution. As the bicameral mind broke down and humans gained consciousness, he argues, they heard the voices in their mind with less frequency. Between the second and first millenium B.C., man eventually lost his "contact with the gods" and gained contact with himself.


This is something I always wondered about. God seemed to have talked to a lot of people back in the day, but for some reason, went silent long ago.

consciousness2007.tripod.com...


The philosopher Daniel Dennett, in an article written in 1986 for the journal Canadian Psychology entitled Julian Jaynes's Software Archeology, suggested that Jaynes was wrong about quite a few of his supporting arguments, especially the importance he attached to hallucinations, but that these things were not essential to his main thesis, which may well be right. Dennett asserts that if Jaynes's argument is recast, using the modern computational metaphor, it makes a lot of sense. The hardware of the human brain may perhaps be the same today as it was thousands of years ago, but there must have been much more recent changes in the software of our data processing system for us to have become the way we are today. Dennett concludes his article by stating:

Jaynes' idea is that for us to be the way we are now, there has to have been a revolution -- almost certainly not an organic revolution, but a software revolution -- in the organization of our information processing system, and that has to come after language. That, I think, is an absolutely wonderful idea, and if Jaynes is completely wrong in the details, that is a darn shame, but something like what he proposes has to be right; and we can start looking around for better modules to put in the place of the modules that he has already given us.


This is an interesting point. Our processes for thinking, evolved as well, It is not just a biological evolution, it is also an evolution on how we think.

I don't know if this concept is true or not, but it opens up a new perspective on looking at our thought processes.


edit on 10/26/2013 by tothetenthpower because: --Mod Edit--Please use EX tags for external content.




posted on Oct, 26 2013 @ 04:39 PM
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Would make sense Abrahamic religions claim a God talks to them (in what language)? And entrusts them of all billion people on the world, to deliver messages for all Mankind.

Schizo also tend to have that high brain activity, hearing voices, and insisting on ideas/theories as fact *cough*



posted on Oct, 26 2013 @ 04:47 PM
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Even though modern neuroscience has pretty much disproven Jaynes' theory I heartily recommend The Origin of Consciousness in the Breakdown of the Bicameral Mind to everyone. It certainly presents a unique idea that will get you thinking.



posted on Oct, 26 2013 @ 04:48 PM
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The entire premise here is flawed.

It supposes a conclusion (God is not real, or if he is he doesn't talk to men) and then seeks to reach that conclusion.

Fail.
edit on 26-10-2013 by JayinAR because: (no reason given)



posted on Oct, 26 2013 @ 04:56 PM
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reply to post by gardener
 


Voices in their heads would certainly pump up their emotional furor, and explain the view of the religious fanatic.

It has long been my observation that some people see things that others do not. I am not talking about hallucination here, I am talking about the ability to visualize things, to be creative, imaginative, inventive. I have often pondered how there are many people who are not good at school, not good on paper, but extremely intelligent when it comes to doing things in the physical world. At the same time, there are many people who are very intelligent on paper, but not good at all when attempting to do things in the physical world.

I don't know if it is correct for this to be called conscious, but in many ways the idea of conscious does fit.



posted on Oct, 26 2013 @ 05:04 PM
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reply to post by poet1b
 


Yep -- Julian Jaynes theory is very interesting.

What fascinates me is not Jaynes theory, but rather those who say
the exact opposite happened; that in fact we had a healthy
bicameral mind from the very beginning, but the breakdown,
if it occurred, is recent. I.E humans have killed the female,
nurturing part of ourselves, and the male plunder and
destroy part of ourselves and our world is well underway.

I myself have my own perspective.. that being the perceptual
machinery of the human species has meme-gene co-evolved
for so long now, to serve our meme masters (culture),
that we have lost access to our core functionality as
human beings. (and spiritual beings.. but that is a much
deeper subject).

Our own success as a species, due in large part to culture,
has now entered the terminator gene portion of our
symbiotic relationship.

I wrote about it a bit here:

www.abovetopsecret.com...

KPB



posted on Oct, 26 2013 @ 05:04 PM
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reply to post by poet1b
 



This is something I always wondered about. God seemed to have talked to a lot of people back in the day, but for some reason, went silent long ago.

Initially God created mankind from the dirt that this world was made of and breathed His life force (Holy Spirit) into the Adam construct.

Only pure humans have the ability to directly communicate with the Lord.

Over time, the human DNA pool has become more tainted with fallen angel DNA thus creating the nephilim.

Nephil spirits (demons / ghosts / ancestral guardians) can possess non-pure humans and switch off their pineal glands. This is how those that talk directly with YHWH are non-existent now.

Everyone is contaminated in someway, exactly the same way as it was before the Great Flood.



posted on Oct, 26 2013 @ 05:05 PM
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reply to post by JayinAR
 


As opposed to assuming that God is real?

While Jayne seems to embrace the idea that God does not exist, I don't think Jayne's concept of the bicameral mind is mutually exclusive with the concept that there is a God.

Maybe ancient man had a greater capability to communicate with the higher self, then our current state of mind, consciousness, allows. Think tower of Babel.



posted on Oct, 26 2013 @ 05:10 PM
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reply to post by poet1b
 


I do not intend to argue the merits. I was simply making the observation that the logic used to come to this conclusion is inherently flawed.



posted on Oct, 26 2013 @ 05:13 PM
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reply to post by KellyPrettyBear
 


I would say that this is essentially, the main motivation behind New Age concepts.

Ancient tales also talk about people being able to perform magic. Maybe a stronger link with the higher self enabled ancients to do amazing things.



posted on Oct, 26 2013 @ 05:18 PM
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reply to post by JayinAR
 


Just pointing out the logical opposite to your statement

I think you need to do considerably more to prove that the concept is inherently flawed.



posted on Oct, 26 2013 @ 05:24 PM
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reply to post by poet1b
 


Actually no, I don't. The logic is faulty.
You don't start with a conclusion and work towards that end.



posted on Oct, 26 2013 @ 05:25 PM
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reply to post by poet1b
 

Even in the Iliad, the men who "hear the gods speaking" are only isolated individuals.
if there was anything in this theory, it ought to be everybody.
To me, the conversations in the Iliad reveal as much subjective personality as can be found in any more recent literature.
They are not people with different kinds of minds from our own.



edit on 26-10-2013 by DISRAELI because: (no reason given)



posted on Oct, 26 2013 @ 05:31 PM
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poet1b
reply to post by KellyPrettyBear
 


I would say that this is essentially, the main motivation behind New Age concepts.

Ancient tales also talk about people being able to perform magic. Maybe a stronger link with the higher self enabled ancients to do amazing things.



Indeed!

However what most new-agers don't know, is that by using
new-age concepts.. it's apparently (or so it seems to me)
purposely designed to prevent success.

Now, are there some writings with clues that a very dedicated
person could use to reclaim their humanity? Some. Not many.
Some of the best are in Tantric Buddhism. But that can only
take one so far.

KPB



posted on Oct, 26 2013 @ 05:39 PM
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gardener
Would make sense Abrahamic religions claim a God talks to them (in what language)? And entrusts them of all billion people on the world, to deliver messages for all Mankind.

Schizo also tend to have that high brain activity, hearing voices, and insisting on ideas/theories as fact *cough*



Two things. It goes way past hearing voices to include face to face conversation. Need to understand that if we are going to get a clear picture here.

As well, considering the history time frame of the Hebrews, very rare were the individuals that claimed any sort of conversation with God or His angels.

As a side bar, this "Abrahamic Religions" thing is weak. For one thing the God of Abraham keep a vain of conversation going with His people going for some time unbroken. This other son of Abraham did not take up with Abrahams God and didn't report any "conversations" for some many hundreds of years after his mother was spoken with. Calling this other thing an "Abrahamic Religion" is intellectually ridiculous on several fronts.



posted on Oct, 26 2013 @ 06:00 PM
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reply to post by DISRAELI
 


It has been a loooong time since I have read the Iliad. How about yourself? If you are basing your idea on a movie, then you might want to take a look at the Iliad again. At least that is what I considered when I read this concept.

Odysseus certainly showed imagination, but I don't know about the other characters.

I don't think it is that far fetched to explore the possibilities that human beings' minds worked differently.

Consider this, the Y chromosome is shrinking, and I would think that has a lot to do with how men think.

www.hhmi.org...



posted on Oct, 26 2013 @ 06:03 PM
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reply to post by poet1b
 

I read through it again last year.
So no, I'm not basing my thoughts on a movie.



posted on Oct, 26 2013 @ 06:42 PM
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Now this is absurd.

Obviously it *WAS* god talking to them.

I mean, there were no microwave transmitters back then to send the signals into the skulls of the psyop victims, right?

How else did they hear these voices? Has to be god, because we all know that when people today hear voices, it is the government.

Hmm a controlling authority that scares us.. I don't see the connection.




posted on Oct, 26 2013 @ 06:45 PM
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poet1b
reply to post by JayinAR
 


Just pointing out the logical opposite to your statement

I think you need to do considerably more to prove that the concept is inherently flawed.



Reason is barely half a millennium old
yet presumes to be able to explain prior POV/paradigms

the claim that before Reason, humans did not have conscious minds or subjectivity
is beyond ludicrous and implies that anything before the renaissance is irrelevant to moderns
same with your title it presumes everybody was crazy before "the light of Reason " appeared

The Invisibles_v.1 issue 07 copyright Grant Morrison and Vertigo/DC Comics
which also happens to be the foundational principal of Francis Bacon's view of science [with torture included]

what changed with the mass imposition of exclusive "left brain" consciousness was merely the hypertrophy of merely one of the multiple intelligences humans possess: the one that allows mass manipulation by those who control society
also known as the Ego.
the claim that the heroes of the iliad were robots of the gods, is a classic case of projection and exposes the agenda

proof? are you a parent?
tell me how your kid's were just "out of control robots" until they were properly "programmed".
oh wait...



posted on Oct, 26 2013 @ 06:48 PM
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poet1b
reply to post by KellyPrettyBear
 



Ancient tales also talk about people being able to perform magic. Maybe a stronger link with the higher self enabled ancients to do amazing things.


That is correct,
this is one of the fundamental teachings of Shamanism.






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