First Causes

Peter F fell_trapforspambot_in at ozemail.com.au
Wed Sep 15 06:44:35 EST 2004

"JPL Verhey" <matterDELminds at hotmail.com> wrote in message
news:4146f327$0$62373$5fc3050 at dreader2.news.tiscali.nl...

> I agree that social cohesion and communication is a big player, als in
> our emotions, thoughts and behavior. We wouldn't be, and as we are,
> without it. But that is also and even more so true in an ants nest.

There are some differences between ants and humans, too; differencers that
ought not be
ignored IMHO. ;-)

> But it's a hard guess what "ants consciousness" would be. In my next life
> I'll try being an ant.:)

Me think its better if you try being a "single individual ant-colony" rather
than a single ant, since the former is an organism that operates closer to
the level and degree of complex functionality and mass of coordinated
cellular componentry (respectively so to speak) that a brain (or nervous
system or
brain-body system) of a fully developed and functionally intact adult human
individual operates at. :-)

A have spotted (and been more or less willing to swallow) different
hypotheses and theories about what consciousness is. Some of these I feel
are worthy of being patched together as legitimate partial
descriptions of what consciousness is, or ought to be thought to be. (Ought
be most
Encompassingly Philosophically Thought, that is :).

One unusually meaty (and tasty) interpretation I have come across is
O'Regan's and Noë's "Sensorimotor
Contingencies" (theory).

Another, complementary, view of 'the big and slippery C' is so simple and
that it has no name. However, it has nevertheless indirectly been given
pride of theoretical place by some of the world's most prominent brain
scientists/authors --  not the least by Alexandr R. Luria in chapter 2 of
his book "The Working Brain, An Introduction to Neuropsychology".

It is merely to do with the well-known "neuropsychophysiological" reality
of "reticular activating type" (or "RAT") neurons.

[RAT is a S_EPT_IC humored attribute, advocated by the acronym-adoring
author of EPT.

The signature attached at the end of this post reflects an attempt to cram
into a tight digital space (word-count limit imposed by Microsoft) as much
of an account for what EPT is as that space allows, or more. This is why I
now warn you that when I wrote that signature I had to be *even more cruel*
to the English language than I normally am.%-}]

RAT neurons is a legacy of the first to have evolved type of
"neuroelectrically" active cellls.

They evolved during the comparatively sedately life-styled early phase in
the phylogeny of fauna. And
so, there is not much of a coincidence that the main location of the somas
of RAT neurons are located at the basal and core regions of the brain.

Only when the era of predation had started, and began to hot up, did the
phylogeny of
fauna 'feel' the evolutionary (selective) pressure that made it 'respond' by
emerging and accumulating an increasingly greater proportion of rapidly
responding/signal-transmitting, phasically activated and relatively
specifically projecting, neurons. [For want of a suitably silly - RAT
matching - name, "specific neuron(s)" might suffice for any roughly RAT
neuron contrasting neuron.]

RAT neurons provide (by their firing) the _essential "energizing" (or tonic)
of (most generally considered) the 'brainspacetime patterns" that are (of)
the three gross levels (or sequentially ontogenetically expressed
functionally specialized neuroanatomical "layers"), motivational modes,
specific sensory feature-detecting contents, and intensities, of (the)
Consciousness (of hence differently conscious animals of differnet and same
species) *IS*.

I hope I have provided at least a small reminder about that we (perhaps even
I ;) normally use the 'Consciousness-concept' very sloppily and sweepingly.



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