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Re: Temporary Bicamerality

Posted: Mon Nov 15, 2010 9:33 am
by Rollo
I do have faith though -- I'll answer your rhetorical question -- in systems. Wikipedia, as I have said, is a system that works, and I think the guiding principals embodied by it could be put to use in replacing the systems we have.

Do you know Wikipedia well? The machinations behind the scenes I mean? No leadership, thought leaders do emerge from time to time and take their place as leaders of the consensus -- but who are instantly and immediately overruled by the consensus when needs must. No denial or secrets; there is no deletion on Wikipedia, only editing, so we can't hide from the past, and so don't need to; and nothing can be written that can not be read by any and everyone, though the overabundance of information means people can have their privacy. No rules, though rules emerge and evolve over time, the only remaining rule being 'no rules'. These, among some others, are simple lessons in systemic practice that I think we would do well to learn from Wikipedia.

So yes, I still have faith. Emerging truths and systems will eventually replace the redundant ones, won't they? Here's hoping. Here's another beginning.

Re: Temporary Bicamerality

Posted: Wed Nov 24, 2010 7:28 pm
by JSJohnson
Amen to that, Rollo. While the laws of science are a mechanistic interpretation of natural order, Kauffman’s “Reinventing the Sacred” (as much as I could understand of it) explains that nature is self-organizing in creative ways that are not reducible to, or predictable by, the laws of science. But he seems to imply that the sciences, the physical laws, are fundamental; that the resulting creativity, while remarkable, is simply emergent, i.e. incidental.

But we argue, instead, that the physical laws and the emergent properties are integral to a still-deeper unitary coherent creative structure of natural order. In other words, the laws are what they are because they support the emergent properties in coherent ways that sustain creativity.

The way to understand this is to recall that self-organization means increasing system complexity, i.e. including the commonly understood reduction path back from biology to chemistry to physics. Each more complex level (as from physics to chemistry, etc.) adds emergent properties that are not reducible to natural law, but of course if there were no physical processes, there would be no biological processes, etc. What this implies is that if there were not some more-basic principles of natural order, there would be no physical process either.

So now we look back to the creation event, the earliest conceived expression of physical law where we expect, and find, a most relevant connection with the still deeper structure of natural order. The transitional quality from pre- to post- objective expression is the constraint of symmetry that always applies to the expression of the energy of any system, including the ‘first system,’ whatever than may have been, and all subsequent systems, as conservation law. (Noether’s theorem).

But if symmetry has objective expression, it is also familiar to us as a particular of the deeper, more general and inclusive subjective quality of Aesthetics. We know this because, as Jaynes seems to imply, our neural faculties are naturally selected to reveal this as well as relevant factors essential to organization of sustainable and constructive personal and social systems organization (Golden Rule, love, etc.).

Thus, if symmetry constrains all energy expression of natural order at the interface between pre- and post- creation, then aesthetic qualities are most relevant to sustaining the evolution of all subsequent system complexity. In other words, natural order at the most fundamental level is subjective. The implication is that the human subjects are the most evolved agency of the larger cosmic process on the planet. Small wonder that, as Jaynes has shown us, the natural selection of human neural faculties would lead to perception of the implied symmetries of the Golden Rule relevant to sustained creativity through constructive human choice as essential (and still evolving) agency of the larger creative cosmic process.

Re: Temporary Bicamerality

Posted: Thu Nov 25, 2010 1:51 pm
by aufderoed
Hi Kaori,
if you assume temporary bicamerality (which means a state of subconsciousness; a state without consciousness) that would imply, that consciousness has already existed before this kind of catastrophe, which made humans temporarily "bicameral".
So let's go back to the time before this catastrophe took away consciousness. The question remains: how did originally consciouness evolve. And here we are back at Julian Jaynes basic question.
BTW: I think that these states of partial or total bicamerality (partial or total lack of consciousness) can always be observed among humans and it doesn't necessarily need to be evoked by a catastrophe. It can be even a blessing to be able to dive down into a state of subconsciousness.....and become creative. All creativ events break through from our subconscious mind, spontaneously, to consciousness.
Usually, our consciousness is in the way of becoming creative.
But a non-creative state of subconsciousness can also mean a state of being victim to manipulation. Most people, like sheeple, stay in this state and do what they are told to do: buy stuff, go to war, elect politicians :twisted:

Re: Temporary Bicamerality

Posted: Sat Nov 27, 2010 11:59 am
by Rollo
Haha! Excellent, yes!

It is interesting at this stage to note the increasing difficulty we are having in discovering these (somewhat arbitrarily defined, but still discrete) levels in scientific inquiry; if we say there are four: psychology (this is the first step I think away from simple biology, where the "not reducible ... or predictable" occurs -- the whole-greater-than-sum-of-partsness that we term variously the 'soul' 'free will' 'consciousness' &c.): biology (the step here from chemistry being what we term 'life'): chemistry: and physics.

Psychology needs no proof -- the fact of our inquiring about it is the evidence. Biology can be seen with the naked eye -- look at the clear blue sky and see the cells falling in front of you, or look at a light through a droplet of water in your eyelash and see the world of cells stark (and somewhat frightening) in front of you. Chemistry can be proven with items from the larder, from our everyday experience, but for physics we need more sensitive equipment. The stage we are at now, searching for Higgs' Boson and other such experiments, require millions of man-hours worth of machinery.

And we are, definitely, at a new frontier. Call it the ether, call it the quantum foam, call it whatever -- that stuffs, that nothingness from which tendrils of energy grope into our human reality. And what we will have to do to reach it? Biology is the science of life. Chemistry of the earth. Physics is the science of the solar system, of stars and planets. What we are looking at now is the science of the entire universe, the unraveling of secrets long left untroubled -- touching on the possibility of time as having a 'physical' property? That is far beyond the physics of the table of elements. No, we need a new word, for this new science.

But, can we get there? Look at CERN -- look at the OWL. Perhaps the ether will be our human limit.

So isn't it natural that there will be a new emergent system? We are the best we know of, so far -- and we are standing on the shoulders of (tiny) giants. RNA did not meet its doom with the advent of life -- it was it's glory. Cells have not had their destruction at the hands of this emergent species -- we are a veritable smorgasbord of life, we humans. Why need we fear the next level that emergence? Why would, for instance, silicone based life be any threat to us, any more than we threaten our biological, chemical, physical ancestors.


But this is all aside. I just felt the need to say it -- rarely does the chance arise. But I'm not sure if I follow you -- are you saying the organisation we perceive does have a cause? I rather thought it was not there at all, only a figment of our perception -- that the whole isn't really greater than the sum of its parts, but only seems so. Or are you suggesting that once we understand the fundamental rules that, shall we say, govern the rules we have discovered, we will have more luck explaining this seemingly inexplicable -- that the emergent does exist, and that my thinking it is an illusion is simply because I haven't reached the truth yet?

Indeed, as we delve deeper and deeper, it is easier and easier to understand; and once we think we know all we do about, say, consciousness in biological terms, we must by needs look to chemistry to understand what we don't; and then to physics, to understand further; and eventually we may come to a time when neuroscience is a field run by quantum physicists, because the other answers are already got; and that we won't really have the answer until we have the sciences yet unknown to us?

Well. If thought were food, your post would be a feast. I am full, for the moment.

Re: Temporary Bicamerality

Posted: Tue Nov 30, 2010 2:53 pm
by JSJohnson
Rollo, much obliged for your most stimulating analysis and focus. You ask whether I say that the organization we perceive has a cause or whether it is merely a figment of our perception.

I’d be inclined to say that there are two perspectives on organization; one objective and one subjective. The objective organization would be the causality of the sciences. The subjective would include choice, selection, and emergence.

Causal are the pathways that lead through physics, chemistry, and into biology where there begins emergence and selection and ultimately choice as in psychology where aesthetics would tend to dominate and sustain emergent systems and endless creativity.

But in the absence of the long promised but apparently undeliverable TOE, it seems the cosmos is uncaused in the usual objective sense. But underlying any objective emergence is the constraint of symmetry which is just a particular of the deeper aesthetics, contributing to emergence, selection, and ultimately to choice. Psychology tells us that choice usually implies ends and means.

Is our cosmos chosen or is it merely one of a random multiverse?

1. Science cannot deliver a TOE. It seems cosmos is uncaused in the objective sense. Moreover, there is no causal pathway to confirm a multiverse as an excuse to deny the implications of ‘choice.’

2. Several of our ‘constants of nature’ are very precise. The odds of a multiverse producing a random universe with exactly such a combination of precise constants are extremely low. The implication is that our cosmos emerges from ‘choice,’ not from objective cause, and implies a Subject.

3. Psychology suggests that choice implies ends, and expression implies means. Given that the Subject is fundamental, the nature of the chosen means seems to imply ---

4. A solitary omnipotent Subject overcoming eternal sameness through the agency of emergent subjects having perceptions both limited and challenged by contrived effects of time and space, assuring endless plurality, novelty, and ultimate propagation of life and the subject agency throughout. Perception, yes, but hardly trivial or without meaning.