Unified Experience

Is the mind the same as the body? What is consciousness? Can machines have it?

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Unified Experience

Post by Xav » Sun Jan 06, 2019 8:13 am

Imagine for a moment that all that existed in the entire universe was a single human brain. There was no vacuum or void surrounding it, it just was. By some miraculous means, it thought, functioned, and experienced all on it’s own.

Now imagine it experienced its life time; formed memories, started small and childish, grew old and tired, then died and faded away to nothing. This mind and the universe are one and the same. Let’s say it was you who was this mind, your experience could equally be regarded as the universe’s experience as you are all that is the universe. That single point or entity we all feel we are (not the network of ticking neurons); the experience of being ‘one thing,’ was being experienced by you, who is the universe.

Now imagine, once there was nothing left of the mind, a new and different mind grew in a similar fashion. This new mind has no memories of the previous mind, yet is still all that is in the universe. Though the mind would have no memory of it, it is still the very same universe which was originally entirely the previous mind.

The two minds might think of themselves as two different selves however I would say that the universe experienced both outside the limitations of concepts like ego and memory. In this strange and hypothetical universe, is a space where a reincarnation like concept can be easily imagined. The universe being both minds whilst each mind feeling separate.

The universe would have no facilities for being aware of itself. Nor would either mind know what it was apart of as the powerful sense of being an important and individual existence (the ego) is a deep and core value of the brain that hosts our experience. This universe would be like a pool of water, that is experience, with dividers in it separating it like segments in an ice cube tray. Each divided section being a mind, unaware that it is filled with the same water that fills all the other trays.

In this hypothetical universe, the ice cube tray only has one row; only one pool at any one time. Linear. But who’s to say there couldn’t be simultaneous pools? Einstein’s work tells us time’s relation to space is nothing like how we perceive it. Chronology means nothing to the overall workings of the universe so why would reincarnation like phenomena not be possible in a nonlinear environment. Who’s to say everyone of us isn’t the very same experience divided only by memory and evolved illusions of self?

What’s more, who’s to say experience is even limited to the complex neurological systems of organisms and brains. Frankly it is a vast assumption to make any definition for what experience is. From experiencing, I infer that it is possible for a large system of complex energy transfers and reactions (the brain), to form a unified entity, a section of the metaphorical ice cube tray of experience. Who’s to eliminate the possibility that any network of reactions and energy movement couldn’t result in some sort of experience, no matter how foreign or simple? To rocks striking each other in space could create a sudden moment of experience that the universe could feel. A sudden pulse of experience so simplistic and foreign to us it’s impossible to imagine and so we conclude it’s impossible in general.

What if the dividers in the pool are what is unique to human experience? Could everything else in the universe be experiencing as one? Our strange ego’s extending like tendrils or limbs; still apart of the enormous experience of the universe yet in our own peculiar way isolated by traits grown by evolution. (Evolution in itself being a complex system that very well may have its own experience).

I do not think the fact that I can entertain this idea via a pseudo rational thought experiment, relying on assumptions and missing many of the greater complexities of human experience proves it is correct. However as a westerner, ideas like reincarnation are often laughed at as we head to church to transmit thoughts to a giant man in the sky who puts us on naughty-nice lists like Santa, yet thoughts like these make me think that reincarnation like ideas run closer to the laws of logic and rationale than god like beings seem to.

This article may very well be just be wrong. Perhaps there truly is no such thing as experience from that single unified being made of a brain. That may simply be how deep the illusion of ego runs. I am very much a follower and believer of science. But the point of this article is to show that a oneness among life and the universe doesn’t stray as far from logic or science as I’ve heard many say. Science has been aided and phenomena have been discover from just as absurd sounding thought experiments.

In a TED talk David Chalmers says to attack a scientific explanation for consciousness we will need highly radical ideas to kick off and in summary here is mine:

What if the universe is a unified experience that has developed complex structures within itself (human minds) that have developed a technique (ego/sense of self) of separating themselves from the wider experience of the universe?

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Re: Unified Experience

Post by Age » Mon Jan 07, 2019 4:26 am

When, and if, you define the word 'Mind' correctly, then you will SEE just how close you are to thee actual Truth.

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