After many conversations with friends about experience vs. reflection, I decided I should attempt to extricate how it is I grasp consciousness and its inhabiting structures. These are simply ongoing notes and reflections written for my own personal reference. Though it may not be immediately obvious, there is a certain logic to the order in which these thoughts are introduced.
A living organism is a subjective being, and a subjective being possesses a body. A subject possesses a perspective, while an object is possessed by a perspective.
Stimulation occurs due to a change or transference of energy, otherwise called an affect. Stimulation acting on the body produces an affect which leaves an impression on the mind. Sensory stimulation occurs due to an affect on the sensory organs located on the body.
Memory is produced by recalling past impressions
Reflection is a synthetic process which integrates past memories with present experience; by retrieving past impressions, of varying quantity and quality, and creating new associations.
Reflection extricates concepts from their originally generated, or prior applied, context and introduces the concepts into the present consciousness.
Experience is a feature of all living beings, rendered by responding to stimulations derived from the external world.
Experience is feeling: the production of sensations on the mind.
Experience, prior to the introduction of any and all structural concepts, is a swirling chaos of pure feeling and sensation, with each sensation represented to varying magnitudes and degrees. The absence of any order is confusing, swirling, melting, blooming, variegating; a storm of senses, containing every color, sound, smell, touch, taste; with all the accompanying pain and pleasure; boiling of shade, hue, tint, tone.
Experience can be conscious or unconscious.
Consciousness is produced by active reflection. Unconsciousness is produced by inactive reflection.
Consciousness is marked by reflection: it is the feature of reproducing impressions—memories— and hold them before the “mind’s eye” for consideration (for application or entertainment).
Reflective consciousness may produce the feeling of experience by reproducing memories of prior experience, otherwise known as imagining, but this experience is not actively “living”, but presently “dead”. According to the sensations produced, that which is living is fluid and changing; while that which is dead is static and persisting.
Consciousness has many levels: it is not simply being “alive”. There are many levels— or orders— of consciousness. Higher order consciousness arises in proportion to complexity: the greater the complexity, the greater consciousness.
The complexity of consciousness is proportional to the quantity and quality of reflection. By quantity I speak temporally of “how often”, specifically done. By quality I speak spatially of “how many”, specifically kinds.
The faculties of consciousness relate to both the sensory input organs and the sensory integration organs. The five senses constitute the input organs, while the integration organs relate to associative memory.
The sensory input organs are developed according to their sensitivity which arises from exposure. Each input organ develops independently from or in combination with other input organs. Independent exposure produces depth; while combinatory exposure produces breadth, with depth increasing in proportion to exposure of combinations..
The integration organs break down further into two aspects of integration, being intelligence and creativity. Intelligence relates to efficient associative memory, while creativity relates to effective associative memory.
Efficient associative memory arises from similar stimulation, repetition, or repeated exposure, or routine; which produce strengthened habits of thought.
Effective associative memory arises from dissimilar stimulation, instances, or diverse exposure, or novelty; which produce weakened habits of thought.
How concepts structure experience into knowledge:
Concepts render conscious experience; that is, concepts render experience conscious.
Concepts are the lens, the paradigm, the filter, the mold, the scope, the structure, the order with which experience is made conscious.
Conceptual structures arise from reflection.
Concepts order experience; they serve to distinguish distinctions among the spectrum of colorful feeling so that colorful feeling can be indexed according to its kind and utilized when the appropriate context calls for it.
All knowledge resembles a polyhedron bi-pyramid. Each domain of knowledge (experience or thought) is a triangular face on the pyramid, with every domain representing a specific context, or culture or social structure.
Concepts are geometric shapes or tools; they exist as structures that organize the integration of experience.
When I imagine what a single concept is within a single domain, my thoughts produce a two dimensional geometric shape that resembles a snowflake.
If the concept is complex and developed by experimental experience, and incorporates many domains of thought, I imagine a three dimensional solid, with one face visible to the domain, and the interrelations with other conceptual blocks hidden from sight, existing internally within the pyramid.
A context is the associations established among objects by circumscribing the area around the location of a given point.
A context is determined by the degrees of relation among objects proximate to the given point of a subject’s location.
A context is an ecology and system: an ecology is the entire sum of objective demands acting within the context; a system is a series of connections produced by cause and demand.
The context produced by conscious experience is a domain of thought; a perspective of mind.
Each context is a unique, temporally and spatially located, experience with specific environmental demands, being physical or social. Context is the situation of a given organism or subjective being, in present or past.
Context is defined as the problem; the environmental demands. Every organism is programmed to self-preserve: survival is an organisms priority. As such, every context poses a problem, with the ease of the problem increasing in proportion to the level of adaptation.
The greater the problem or struggle or chaos or confusion, the greater the need for reflection, and the greatest potential for generating new concepts.
Concepts are always generated within a specific context, to solve the problem of context and its individuated environmental demands; therefore concepts are anchored to the context in which they were generated. Concepts may be unanchored when they are reproduced through reflection, introduced to the consciousness, and applied to the context of present or past experience.
Division of labor diversifies contexts by delineating and indexing concepts according to the specific context in which they were generated. In this way division of labor acknowledges the utility of context and the accompanying specialization of concepts.
Each face of the geometric solid represents a the conceptual structure of a single perspective.
Environment is determined by the temporal and spatial location of a subjective being in an external world constituted by finite matter composing infinite entities.
All particulars are ideas of consciousness:: All facts are particulars of experience.
All ideas are indexed concepts; ideas are truth, and cannot be challenged by experience.
All facts are indexed experiences; facts are probable, and can be challenged by experience.
An untested fact is only an idea.
A tested idea is a fact only in the context in which is was tested.
All premises must be grounded in experience.
All facts must be grounded in experience.
Convergence occurs due to association.
Convergent lines intersect at angles which represent logical connectors, or operators or associations.
Operators connect or hold the concept together and give it shape.
Dualities of Consciousness
I come to possess concepts in two ways: passively or actively.
1. Passive concepts are yielded deductively, as given ideas.
2. Active concepts are yielded inductively, as created facts. .
1. Knowledge is ideas that have been passively structured with concepts: knowledge is rote, analytic, two dimensional, logically sequential, abstract and monochromatic
2. Wisdom is experience that has been actively structured with concepts: wisdom is intuitive, synthetic, three dimensional, holistic, concrete and colorful.
1. I passively receive concepts through books or passively listening to lecture or discourse. These concepts arrive prefabricated and incomplete. In this way passive concepts exist a priori to experience until the extent of their full nature fully tested through experimentation and the geometric solid can be developed. These concepts are linked
When I receive a passive concept, each sentence or logical operation produces or adds black lines, points, or angles to the shape. The lines are the premises; and the angles are the operators. The concept itself is hollow and possesses no internal color and therefore no way of distinguishing it from other similar concepts without an external indicator. In fact, when I think about an abstract concept, it’s sometimes difficult to see where premised lines begin and where they end, which angles of logic are part of the line or part of two separate premised lines intersecting.
2. I actively produce concepts though the process of organizing chaotic or confusing experience. That is, a problem imposes disorder on my experience and by turning over the problem within my mind— by reflecting and describing and rotating its nature; and asking how and why and when it works and where it comes from and what it associates with— I produce an erect a structure which orders the experience. This structure is a concept.
Every actively produced concept is a result of applied pressure, applied work, constantly squeezing, testing, stretching, challenging, and undermining its ability to yield a concept that orders and explains experience.
New concepts are constructed when the particulars of mind converge in a context, as a result of reflection.
Wisdom is synthesis of contexts, or disparate domains of knowledge, and the concepts located within.
The process of testing particulars yields experience.
The process of testing concepts within a context yields understanding.
The process of testing concepts in various contexts yields wisdom.
The bipyramid capstone is the unifying concept; the pinnacle is the all seeing eye; the concept located at the highest point is the higher order self, or a consciousness that is fully aware of its self, due to reflection.
The top of the pyramid is where synthesis occurs: all concepts exist under this synthesizing capstone.
No matter what the domain, there is always a single unifying concept at the top, which resembles a capstone, in which all other concepts are built upon. This concept possesses the same shape and is positioned in the same location for every domain. Reaching the very point of this capstone requires emptying all concepts from the mind, and feeling entirely. When this occurs synthesis can occur among other domains of thought and their concepts.
The concepts extending from under this unifying concept all resemble irregular geometric shapes. The farther down, the more irregular, and the less compatible with concepts horizontal to it. Extending away from the unifying pinnacle located at the tip of the capstone, the base extends down infinitely as each additional concept justifying existing concepts indexes a new aspect of experience.
Each concept possesses very unique features that allow it to integrate seamlessly with other concepts that possess inversely congruent features, so that they rest stable on one another. In this way all compatible concepts are inversely related (dualistic), like puzzle pieces, possessing a supply or demand that links them together, a void or an instantiating, a cause or effect, a deficit or surplus. Every concept contrasts with an interlinking, compatible concept in which it is connected.
New domains of knowledge cannot be built up from passive concepts. They can only reconstruct an existing domain of knowledge. Passive concepts can build down, developing or elaborating new concepts, from existing domains of knowledge.
Only when the unifying concept located at the point of the capstone is established can active concepts build up new domains of knowledge.
Adaptation and Evolution
Adaptation is an equalizing response; adapting is a response which creates equilibrium between two objects.
Adaptation is the appropriate response to environmental demands.
Adaptation of a subjective being is the appropriate response to proximate objective demands imposed by the given context.
The necessities, struggles, and demands original to a context does not guarantee adaptation. If the subjective being is perfectly adapted to its environment– the objective demands of its context–, appropriate responses will occur fluidly and seamlessly.
Energy must be supplied to a system to produce change.
If a subjective being is produced by the context, it is perfectly adapted. Wherever energy is highest, adaptation is fastest. Potential energy allows for future adaptation.
Concepts allow for adaptation by producing appropriate responses to changing demands.
Access to concepts and active reflection is imperative to adaptation.
Concepts without reflection cause functional fixation because they only consider the concepts—and the context in which they were generated— presently occupying the consciousness, which is incompatible with the demands of the current context.
Some personalities possess a chronic struggle which produces creative thoughts and solutions: madness of creative genius, anxiety, bipolar, depression, and the like.