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§ September 2nd, 2009 § Filed under Chapter 12: Deconstructing Consciousness § Tagged , , § No Comments

Flowers own the "right now," don't they? But your conscious experience of it can only be a memory.

Flowers seem to own the "right now," don't they? But your conscious experience of it can only be a memory.

            That Saturday morning See Do and I connected again and moved into questions and discussion of human consciousness.

            His explanation is that only our memories align to form a cohesive reality. That, in fact, these memories are all we have. From split second to split second, all we are able to be aware of is the nearest memory of the last instant. Even our perception of “right now” is assembled about a half-second after we receive the sensory input. We tie these moments in with what we believe are a long history of memories inside our head, leaving us with our belief in a continuous reality.

            Our moment-to-moment grappling with this sense of what we call “reality” is what we call “consciousness.” And holding it as a whole and cohesive matter is consuming.

            Our minds build a cohesive universe based on the briefest, sparsest of data: the sensory inputs funneling into our brains. And in what we believe is real-time, but actually isn’t real anything, we build a whole and functional worldview.

            Science has long demonstrated that the world is not as we perceive it. For example, there is no “color.” It is our mind’s way of decoding a rudimentary sense of energy frequencies built up from just three sensors, tuned for what we think of as red, green and blue. You see, in the actual world outside our heads, there is no color as we think, or rather believe, we see it. Just various frequencies of electromagnetic radiation bouncing around.

             And a lot of energy is moving around us. In every direction. Our minds have to assemble something for us to deal with. They take in sensory information. Information that comes in through a very limited set of senses. Senses that have been tuned to efficiently deal with and build a cohesive reality while expending a minimum of energy and brain power. Remember, we need to do other things too, like think, dream, learn, love, decide, act, etc.

            These “constructs” are then given over to be memory. That’s all there is. And we believe in it, as we must. Though memory can bend to keep the world feeling cohesive, as it must. And we are completely unawares. That is consciousness – the holding of reality – the constant reconstructing to maintain a continuous cohesive whole that we move through. Between people, we assume each of us is on the same page, experiencing this consciousness of the same instant, in the same instant. As our brains yield up the evidence to this seamless sense of “consciousness”, there is simply no way to validate, or invalidate, that idea.

            Our minds will create a cohesive universe on the slightest grounds. And tie it up to agree when new input threatens. And rework memory to fit. We’ll move together and believe we are moving together, and at the same instant. If not, there is just no way our minds would let us see.

            Science has proven that most of our sensory input comes to our consciousness about a half-second after it is initially sensed. And that when events force disagreement, our mind can move our sense of consciousness back in time to make inputs align into simultaneity.

            — continued