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Mental Relativity

An Overview

by Melanie Anne Phillips

Self Awareness is an elusive entity. As a concept, it defies definition. As a process, it masks its mechanism. There is no object of consideration, no subject of speculation more observable nor less quantifiable. As humans, we all feel we have it, yet none of us are sure exactly what it is we have. The ability to be aware of oneself forms both a window to and a filter over the universe. And more than all else, self-awareness seeks to look into a mirror.

Exploring the mechanism by which one can explore is a recursive process. It is difficult to take an objective view of subjectivity. It is not, however, impossible. If any one of us was alone in the cosmos, we would have no possibility of understanding who and what we really are. However, we are many, and we can all look at each other more objectively than we can look at ourselves. And this is where we make our first mistake.

We assume that because we are outside observers, we can impartially inspect and document the minds of others. What we are forgetting, is that we are observing others from the subjectivity of our own minds. The template of perception that makes each of us conscious is layered over all that we observe without our being aware. We stamp our patterns upon all that we see, mixing ourselves with our subject.

If we were only aware and not self-aware, we would still be affected by the external world. Observations would come in through our senses and the body would respond, unknowingly. But as a result of our self-awareness, we do not merely respond, but seek the meaning of that which we observe. To find meaning, we look for patterns. In fact, we impose patterns.

Whether we recognize a character in a word or a character in a story; whether we see a footprint in the sand or a footprint in a spectrum; regardless of whether we note harmonics in sound, electronics or the resonance of atoms, we are imposing patterns on what we observe.

When we attempt to document the workings of our own minds by looking into the minds of others, our capacity to make patterns overlays the essence of their pattern making ability, masking from us the very thing we seek. As a result, the one place we can least see the nature of our selves is in ourselves. A much better place to look for the mechanism of our minds is in the physical universe, where the patterns we see as a species and agree upon are reflective of that part of self-awareness that is common to us all.

Mathematical relationships, physical laws, art, even logic itself reflect recurring patterns that are not intrinsic to the universe but intrinsic to the Mind. We see ourselves in everything in which we find meaning. The stuff of the universe is the screen upon which we project our image.

But how to separate the image from the screen: how do we remove the observer from the observation so that we can see either one clearly? A solution is to accept self-awareness as being an internal universe in which we must remain. The concept of self-awareness then becomes a closed system where the very existence of a self precludes an external appreciation. Such a closed system defines what is self from what is not. Anything inside the system is "us", anything outside the system is not us.

This view clearly separates our sense of self from the rest of the universe. This is a key concept. Rather than seeing consciousness simply as the result of complex biochemical interactions, the mind becomes a specific definable object, separate from all parts of our body and brain that are not actually self-aware, separated completely from the physical universe. From this perspective, the mind emerges as a kind of synthesis - a wave of consciousness that represents the summation of physical processes, yet is non-physical itself.

That this wave form is common to all minds is the essence of communication. Without this central similarity, we could find no meaning, no empathy in the minds of others. Yet in spite of the similarities among us, there are differences as well. Each of us has an identity in which we perceive ourselves as essentially different from anyone else. Clearly, there is a mechanism at work that overlays, modulates or appends the foundation of self-awareness so as to allow for a range of personalities within the Mind's domain.

Immediately, two high level questions present themselves in the attempt to identify the mind. One, what is the nature of the essence of self-awareness common to us all? And, two, how is that essential self-awareness changed to create the variety of personalities we observe? To answer the second question, we must have the answer to the first. So, it is with the first question we begin.

Conceptual Components of the Mind

In the physical world, we perceive four essential components that, in the most basic sense, describe categories with which all observable objects and phenomena can be defined. These four components are Mass, Energy, Space, and Time. If all we know of the universe is reflective of the manner by which the mind generates patterns, then we might expect the inner universe to bear an analogous relationship to the external universe, and that is the case.

In the mental world, we perceive four essential components that, like their external cousins, describe categories with which all mental states and processes can be defined. These four components are Knowledge, Thought, Ability, and Desire.

Knowledge is the Mass of the Mind. It represents that which we hold to be true: that which is no longer considered and is accepted as a given.

Thought is the Energy of the Mind. It represents the force of change than can act upon Knowledge to alter and re-order it.

Ability is the Space of the Mind. It represents how much unknown falls in between areas of knowledge.

Desire is the Time of the Mind. It represents an appraisal of how things are changing.

In effect, Knowledge Thought, Ability and Desire (KTAD) are the process equivalents of Mass, Energy, Space and Time (MEST). The mental components are the pattern generators that we project and impose upon the physical universe, creating our appreciations of their physical counterparts.

In the external universe, MEST are all that is necessary to wholly describe any object or event. In the internal universe, KTAD are all that is necessary to describe any attitude or consideration.

That relationships should exist among KTA D is not surprising. Not only do we intuitively expect Thought to have an effect on Knowledge for example, but we have extensively observed Energy having an effect on Mass. For ordinary purposes, we might expect to see some psychological laws such as Conservation of Knowledge and Conservation of Thought.

In fact, when we consider the way self-awareness feels, it seems very much as if we never really lose nor gain knowledge per se, but simply re-order our understanding. As for thought, we do not think any more or any less, but just in different ways, i.e...: logic or feelings.

There is inherent in this approach to describing the Universe a mechanical understanding of these interactions. In the Mind, this approach engenders a digital feel for something we know to be much more flexible and fluid. In the universe, the hard edge of physics was softened with an understanding of relativity. In the mind, the digital nature of a mechanical psychology is supplemented by an understanding of Mental Relativity.

Just as Energy and Mass can be converted one into the other, so can Thought and Knowledge be converted in the synthesis of the mind. In fact, self-awareness appears to each of us inside our personal universe to be a constant. Self awareness seems to be here when we are awake or conscious and gone when it is not. Immediately one suspects that the parallel between mind and universe will extend all the way through Einstein's famous E=MC2. We shall ultimately see, however, that there are significant differences. But first, we must lay some ground work.

Points of View and Perspectives

Although there are four components to self-awareness, we can only see three at any given moment. To be self-aware means to see oneself. The only way to get the full picture would be to stand outside of oneself, which, obviously, we cannot do. So we do the next best thing. We retreat to one corner of our minds to evaluate the rest. If we jump from corner to corner, eventually we can get a good view of the entire mind, though not at the same time.

This is what happens with KTAD. We cannot see all four at the same time since our self-awareness must couch itself somewhere. So, we stand on one of them while we observe the others. What do we mean by "standing" on a component? What we mean is that we cease measuring that one component, assuming it to be a constant. Subjectively, the mind uses that component as its measuring stick, judging the value of the others in reference to the one. Then, in order to get a view of that one, the mind must adopt another component to measure by. When both measurements have been made, the results from the first and second are combined, giving the most efficient internal view of the complete mind.

It is clear that between the first observation of self and the second that things may have changed in the make up of KTAD. Even the process of standing on the "observation platform" of a single component has in reality altered the makeup of that component. So, at the end of two observations, two components have been seen clearly, from two positions, and the other two have only been seen from one point of view each. As a result, there is no way the mind can tell if something has changed on the single observations since there is only one reading each.

The two components that are seen distinctly appear as separate aspects of the mind to the mind, but other two that are seen by single observation become blended and appear as one. An example of this kind of blending in external observation would be when one is sitting in a traffic jam next to a truck. Suddenly, the truck is moving by the window, but one cannot tell for sure if the truck is going forward or the car is slipping back. Something is moving, but which one?

The concept of two components seen as distinct being measured against two components that are blended is expressed by the function: A/B <-> CD which reads "A separated from B is compared to C combined with D. This function describes the most we can know from the most efficient internal process of self-observation.

As a result of this function, one would not see, for example, KTA and no D but rather K and T as separate and A and D as blended. There are still three apparent objects to the mind in this example: K, T, and something called DesireAbility. DesireAbility forms the measuring stick against which K and T are evaluated. This relationship between what is being measured and what is doing the measuring has many ramifications. What it amounts to is a change in point of view.

Is a glass half empty or half full? Is a chemical reaction fast or slow? The answer to both of these questions depends upon what frame of reference is used. What are we measuring them against? Until we establish some ostensibly unchanging "measuring stick" we cannot begin to quantify what we observe.

This problem is no less acute in the mind. Let's look at the relationship between Knowledge and Thought. It is easy to picture Knowledge as being increased by Thought. However, when we reconsider something, we may determine that we really knew less than we thought we did and Knowledge has been decreased by Thought. But do we really know less or do we know more, because now we have a greater certainty in the degree of our knowledge than we did before? Certainly some common frame of reference is required to define these relationships as well.

We have established a frame of reference we call a Quad. The Quad itself represents the function A/B <-> CD. Whichever of the components KTA or D is placed in the A position is seen as distinct from whichever is in the B position. The components in the C and D positions blend, creating the measuring stick for A and B.

Even though C and D are blended, their position in the Quad is important because it indicates the sequence in which the two measurements are made. Here's why. If we assign K to position A, T to B, A to C and D to D, the function reads K/T <-> AD. K is the average of the A and D measurements of it. However, if A measured K as being a certain size and the D measured K as being less, the direction of the change in K would be negative. This would create the perception that this particular kind of knowledge has a negative DesireAbility. Whereas, if D had measured K first, then A's measurement of K would make it appear to be increasing, leading to a positive Desirability for that kind of knowledge. Positive Desirability would lead to a motivation to keep on gathering that knowledge, Negative Desirability would lead to a motivation to avoid that kind of knowledge. It is clear why the sequence of measurement is important.

When considering the four elements of a quad from a spatial ponit of view, sequence doesn't matter. Rather, a spatial appreciation does not look so much toward the blending of elements, but toward the comparison of elements. The most basic kind of comparison would evaluate one element against another, examining the relationship between the pair. Among the four elements in a quad, there are only six different pairs that can be created: two diagonal, two horizontal, and two vertical. For example, K might be paired with T, A, or D. T can be paired with A or D, but has already been paired with K. A can only be paired with D, for it has already been paired with T and K. And D has already been paired with all three of the other elements in the quad. Each pair measures the components KTAD in a different way, and each pair represents a different kind of comparrison made by the mind.

In addition, each of the six pairs will have a certain similarity or kinship primarily with one other pair. In fact, the six pairs of a quad might be considered all falling into three groups of two. The diagonal relationships are called Dynamic pairs, the horizontal relationships create Companion pairs and the vertical relationships describe Dependent pairs. Once again, the subjective view of the mind looking at itself creates three appreciations rather than four. In fact, there is a fourth kind of pair which is much more objective. The fourth view is to see each of the elements in the quad as distinct, not paired at all, or to see them as all being blended together into a single unit.

The fourth view of the quad which creates the two additional "pairs" cannot be arrived at from a point of view inside the quad. It can only be seen from outside the quad, which makes it a more objective view. Since we cannot leave our own minds, self-awareness does the best it can by weighing the sequence against the comparison of all the elements in the entire quad to arrive at a synthesized approximation of objectivity. It is small wonder then, that in the external universe while we are aware of four dimensions, we perceive only three directly, seeing the fourth one, time, as describing the change in the other three.

The appreciation of a single quad can generate many points of view. For example, K and T might be separate with A followed by D as one possibility. Another would hold T and A as separate with D followed by K. In fact, when one considers the sequence of the blended side, the sequence in which the separate side is evaluated, the sequence in which the pair appreciations are explored and the sequence of which pair is seen as blended first, we end up with 192 different points of view from a single quad. In fact, these 192 perspectives represent the most essential intrinsic human concepts, conclusions, emotions, and evalauations. They are nodal points along the continuous spectrum of mental experience.

Whatever the actual biologic mechanism of the brain turns out to be, the elemental nature of the mind is the smallest mechanism that dynamically functions as a Quad. We call the tiniest system that meets this criterion a Thoton.

A thoton is not a physical object. Rather, it describes a system of processes that are interrelated. When one looks at the system, it appears object-like; when one looks at the processes it appears as a function. Therefore, similar to its external cousin, the photon, the thoton can be seen as either a particle or a wave. It can be appreciated either as an arrangement of KTAD or as a sequence of measuring that is occurring in it. A particle view is favored by space, a wave view by time. It is the interactions between the spatial and temporal nature of thotons that synthesize all higher level aspects of self-awareness.

The thoton is not neuralgic, but psychological. However, many of its attributes are reflected in neurons. This is not surprising, since any psychological function is inceptually driven by neuralgic function, although much of this relationship remains unknown. Before describing the thoton directly, it helps to become familiar with neuralgic functioning as an analogy. To understand how this works, let us examine the functioning of a single neuron to see how self-awareness responds to sensory input from the outside universe.

Let's construct a simplified model to illustrate the concept of a neuron. Imagine a hypothetical, empty brain, containing no thought and no knowledge, completely isolated from any kind of sensory stimuli. Now, let us connect sensory nerves to this brain. Action Potentials begin to move along the axons of the sensory neurons, stimulating the dendrites of the next until the spikes ultimately encounter the interneurons of the brain.

The action potential generated in the initial interneurons at a nerve ending in this empty brain come only from the sensory nerve itself, from that single source of stimulation. But as the interneurons begin to stimulate others, eventually, somewhere within the brain, there will be a neuron that is stimulated by the data flowing from two nerves. In effect, this neuron is an intersecting point where signals cross.

Neurons only fire when the reach threshold, which is a trigger that requires a given amount of potential to build up. This threshold can be attained either by temporal summation, which is repeated stimulation from a single source, or by spatial summation, which is multiple stimulations from several sources, or by a combination of both.

So this neuron at the intersecting point might fire as a result of repeated stimulation from one of the two sources or from a multiple stimulation by them both. The effects of time and space interfering with each other is already evident at this point, since until the neuron actually fires, it acts as something of a sponge, sopping up potential in both temporal and spatial summation, blending them together in synthesis until it reaches threshold. It does not matter to the neuron how this potential was amassed, just that threshold was reached.

Our sample neuron fires and continues to fire , due to additional stimulation, which is a fairly binary affair. However, the process of firing is not due to direct electrical stimulation; it is caused by biochemical stimulation. It is the neurotransmitters that collect at the dendrites, building potential, that trigger voltage gated channels to open in the receptors. Migration of ions in and out of the neuron's membrane moves the action potential down the axon to the terminal endings where it releases its action potential in the form of ruptured vesicles that spit neurotransmitter chemicals into the synapses near other neuron's dendrites, building up new potentials.

But, and this is most important, neurotransmitters also build down. Some neurotransmitters act as inhibitors that actually reduce the tendency to fire, by creating a less favorable environment in the synapse. A neuron might be receiving data indicating that it fire, but it cannot because of conflicting data indicating it should not.

Based on this cursory description of the function of the neuron, let us freeze the processes in a neuron and its environment to examine what forces are at work. We would find four qualities involved. First would be the degree of potential that currently exists between the neuron and its environment. This quantifiable amount is analogous to what we call Knowledge in a thoton. It defines how fully prepared a neuron is to fire. Until a neuron has experienced sufficient stimulation, it does not know that stimulation has occurred. More precisely, it is not prepared to inform other neurons that information has come in because the quantity (spatial summation) and/or quality (temporal summation) is not enough for the neuron to believe in the datum is has received. Only when the neuron reaches the threshold does it in fact have enough confidence in the datum to pass it on deeper into the network. Of note is that this analogous knowledge is not contained within a neuron, but between neurons. Being a synthesis, the qualities of thotons are best see as "in-betweens".

The second force at work in our sample neuron is dynamically equivalent to our definition of Thought in a thoton. In the neuron, the channels in a receptor do not remain open indefinitely. If they did, a long, slow process of building up potential could cause a neuron to fire. In reality, if the frequency or power of the potential that exists in the synapse is not great enough, channels will close and have to be reopened. Clearly, the firing of a neuron is not only dependent upon spatially reaching a certain potential, but also that the potential is reached in a certain amount of time. This is much more complex than a "window of opportunity" for it is a continuous process, based on the average of openings and closings. When enough channels are open at the same moment (space intersects time) the neuron will fire. This second force occurs because the neuron seeks entropy in the absence of external stimulation. Entropy is only achieved when the entire compliment of receptor channels is closed.

The third force acting upon the neuron are the inhibiting neurotransmitters. These molecules bind to the receptors preventing the excitatory neurotransmitters from opening that channel. So, the mix between excitatory and inhibitory neurotransmitters determines the susceptibility of the neuron as a whole to fire. The degree of inhibition by neurotransmitters is analogous to the Thoton's quality of Ability.

Finally, the fourth force in neuron firing is concerned with the long-term aftereffects of repeated stimulation of a neuron. Without going too deeply into the biochemistry, Calcium ions bind free vesicles in the bouton to the membrane wall, making them more likely to release neurotransmitters. The presence of Seratonin and/or other transmitters acts upon the membrane to open the calcium channel, allowing more Ca++ ions into the bouton, thereby increasing the likelihood of firing by sensitizing the neuron. Conversely, repeated firing tends to drive calcium out of the bouton until most of the vesicles become free, desensitizing or habituating the neuron. This force is analogous to Desire in the thoton.

In summary, a single neuron is driven by four essential forces: a threshold which functions as a resistance, a time limit which opens a potential, a variable mix of excitatory and inhibitory neurotransmitters which determine power, and a tendency toward habitation or sensitization which controls current.

In the Thoton at rest, Knowledge can be seen as Resistance, Thought as Potential, Ability as Power, and Desire as Current. These four variables constitute a relationship that repeats fractally all the way from a single neuron up to the higher level psychological functions of problem solving and justification. Once the relationship is defined, it can be applied with success to any level of appreciation of mental processes.

This is why we feel confident, that even though the causal relationship between neurology and psychology is still unknown, we can use our understanding of the forces in the one to analogously describe the forces in the other. To this end, let's look at how the concept of a thoton describes the psychological response to sensory stimulation.

Returning to our empty brain, we examine a single thoton, rather than a single neuron. Let us imagine this thought receives stimulation due to an observation (equivalent to sensory nerve stimulation) This stimulation raises the energy level of the thoton, much as the potential is raised in the synapse. The thoton, however, does not fire immediately. Rather, it has a capacity to absorb repeated stimulation, either by temporal or spatial summation, raising it to a new level of energy, building up a charge. As the thoton's charge increases, much like quantum theory, the energy of that charge becomes more unstable; less bound to the thoton. Eventually, through repeated stimulation, the thoton has reached the limit of its ability to hold on to its charge. An additional stimulus occurs, overloading the thoton, making the energy it holds so unstable that it sheds itself of excess energy, sending a packet or quantum of energy on to the next thoton in the chain, stabilizing the thoton back at zero charge. It has taken a number of stimuli to force the thoton to pass on the data.

Now, let's imagine a group of thotons. A single observation, by virtue of its pattern, charges certain thotons in the group, raising each to a higher energy level and making each slightly more unstable. A second observation, identical to the first, stimulates the same thotons. They are all raised to the next level of energy, building up a greater charge and becoming even more unstable or closer to firing.

Observations continue until the stimulated thotons have reached their maximum capacity to absorb energy. At this point, each thoton is at its highest energy level and its greatest instability.

Another identical observation stimulates the same thotons. Since they can hold no more energy, each thoton fires, shedding itself of the excess energy and stimulating the other thotons it is connected to. Each of these new thotons now absorbs the energy of this second-generation stimulation raising to the next energy level, and duplicating the pattern of the ongoing observations.

But all observations are not identical. Some thotons will be stimulated by every observation, some never; most will be stimulated to varying degrees as observation continues.

What happens if sequential observations are not identical? Let's wipe the slate clean and return to the empty brain. As a sequence of dissimilar observations stimulates the immediate thotons, some will eventually reach the firing point before others. At that time, even a homogeneous observation will cause only those most unstable thotons to fire. The others will continue to absorb energy.

When the fully charged thotons fire, the only second-generation thotons to be stimulated will be those directly connected to the firing thotons. Effectively, the homogeneous observation has now been altered and a different pattern emerges at the second generation. This is the essence of synthesis.

This Synthetic pattern is representative of the accumulated energy levels of repeated stimulation by different observations. Effectively, this pattern is learned knowledge, and the first generation of thotons has acted to filter an observation based on accumulated Knowledge.

The pattern and the process of filtering can be described in several different ways. The rising energy levels of a thoton might be seen in electrical terminology as decreasing the resistance of that thoton to the flow of current. This casts thotons in the role of transistors with a very important difference: unlike transistors, each thoton requires MANY stimulations to "open the gate". This gives added weight to repeated stimulation and much more significance to the ultimate firing.

Another perspective is to see Knowledge as a "weighted pattern" not reflecting any specific observation, but the accumulated weight of many observations or the weight of simultaneous occurrence. It is significant that this "weighting" is not an average as once a single thoton has reached its maximum level, it will fire regardless if all the other thotons in the pattern are at their highest or lowest levels.

Refining the model: Knowledge

As progressive generations of thotons become stimulated, paths or channels are created along those connections from generation to generation. A single observation might have portions that are absorbed at the first generation, others that continue far through the brain, and others that continue all the way to the final generation where nerves are stimulated causing muscles to contract and altering the environment in turn.

So, Knowledge may be seen not merely as a simple cross-sectional filter, but as a three dimensional pattern of channels leading into the brain to various depths. Such complexity is difficult to illustrate, but the concept can be conveyed by an analogy. A single observation might "lodge" at any number of levels resembling icicles of various lengths hanging from a roof.

The icicle example illustrates the pattern of repeated stimulation in its cross-section and the degree of repetition in its depth.

"Depth" is not a truly accurate description for in the three dimensional matrix of the brain, the paths of stimulation can assume any pattern: spiral, zigzags, or even double back on itself crossing its own path (a function definable in terms of non-linear equations). Even more accurately, depth might be seen more like gravitational fields that describe a probability map of the mind, based on the experience level of each thoton, cross-connected with thousands of others. In these cases, a single thoton may serve multiple duty as a variable at different stages of processing. This creates the opportunity for complex "processing", but still can be understood as the linear progression of observation-driven stimulation channeled by accumulated knowledge.

So far we have concentrated on a brain receiving one observation at a time. But the brain receives many simultaneous stimulations in a variety of physical areas. As these paths of stimulation cross, they can add to or subtract from other paths. They might also be redirected, enhanced, diminished, or cut off and halted entirely. Any form of interaction is possible. As these separate non-linear paths cross, the affect each other as a common thoton is shared in all their sets. As a result, the relationship between these separate non-linear functions is a relativistic one.

Buckminster Fuller said, "The flow of energy through a system tends to organize that system." As a system, the mind is no exception. Organization can be seen as a stability. In the mind, which is an organization of processes, each process is a function that can be plotted as a wave form. When the wave forms cross each other's paths, they create interference patterns as they synthesize. The overall effect of these interactions creates a pattern of standing waves. This pattern is created by the biochemical makeup of the brain, making the nature of each individual mind identically respondent to the same stimuli, even though the pattern itself derives from the specific observations that have stimulated the mind's thotons. It is this standing wave pattern, which alters and flexes in response to changes in the internal and external environment, that describes the essence of self-awareness.

This concept, as we shall later see, is at the heart of Mental Relativity. For now, however, the important concept to remember is that all these complexities are the result of the simple stimulation of thotons weighted by the pattern of stability due to repeated observation.

Refining the Model: Thought

So far, we have created an analogy to describe how thotons generate knowledge. At this point in development of the model it becomes obvious that if no mechanism existed for the lowering of energy levels in thotons, eventually every thoton would reach maximum. Knowledge would be at 100%, but Thought would completely cease. Fortunately, a mechanism for thotons to return to lower energy levels is intrinsic in the model as described, and functions spontaneously to keep the mind from being grid-locked in knowledge. That mechanism is instability.

As we have seen, when a thoton's energy level raises, it eventually reaches a level at which it will fire when further stimulated. But if left alone, the thoton will fire spontaneously, lowering its energy to a more stable level. The higher the level, the more quickly the spontaneous firing. Again, this function is not only reminiscent of Quantum Physics but is reflected in the neuron in the processes of habitation and sensitization. Depending upon the kind of output neurotransmitter created by a neuron (excitatory or inhibitory) either habitation or sensitization can have the effect of stimulating additional firing elsewhere. It is this spontaneous firing that defines Thought.

Returning to our model, we can see that at any given moment, each thoton in the mind has a degree of instability ranging from zero (fully stable) to infinity (wholly unstable). In actuality, thotons do not truly have "levels", but have a continuous range from stable to unstable that depends upon the specific charge (much like the infinitely variable potential in the synapse that can range from a theoretical zero all the way up to the threshold trigger point). The higher the potential, the greater the probability that the effects of habitation or sensitization will raise or lower the threshold far enough to induce or prevent firing.

This "probability" is the uncertainty principal of the mind. Mental Relativity accepts this uncertainty and seeks only to suggest that as the charge in a thoton increases, there is an increase in the tendency to spontaneously fire. Because each spontaneous firing lowers the remaining energy level, the thoton becomes more stable and less likely to fire. The curve is logarithmic. This gives the existence of un-reinforced knowledge a "half life" that describes its spontaneous decay into original thought.

So, as unstimulated thotons spontaneously fire, they create patterns that never existed in direct observation, but rather reflect the synthesis of repeated observations. These internally generated patterns move through the mind, through the network of thotons, as if they were caused by observed stimulation. And they can modify other paths in the same manner. Internally generated patterns could channel, alter, add to or halt a path of stimulation cause by a direct observation.

It is clear that incredibly complex paths can be created by these simple means. As these complex paths of potential and resistance represent Knowledge, the flow of energy through these paths represents Thought. The subtle nuances of Thought are due to the cosmic scale of the complexity of the paths and the relationship between direct and indirect stimulation.

It is also clear that both of these components are a result of cause and effect, both with observation and with each other. An observation can flow directly thought the brain to nerve endings, triggering an immediate response such as a reflex action. Or, it might cross a path and trigger additional thought or the release of pre-existing patterns that alter thought or trigger a series of complex actions.

Refining the Model: Observation

So far, we have been referring to an observation as "a pattern of stimulation". As with a neuron, this pattern is comprised of both temporal and spatial summation. Rather than seeing an observation as a flat image, we might imagine it as a 3-D image, possessing both a planar pattern and a depth. In our model, of the two remaining components of the mind, Ability relates to the planar pattern, Desire relates to the depth.

Refining the Model: Ability

Our model to this point has dealt primarily with single Thotons. To understand Ability and Desire, we must consider groups of Thotons, called Networks. Networks of Thotons have much in common with Ganglia in the brain. If one considers a single Ganglion, it consist of two partitions, the Left and Right hemiganglion. Each of these regions has both unique and shared duties within the Ganglion as a whole. Similarly, a Network of Thotons consists of two Domains, one an attractor, the other a detractor.

A network of Thotons will have a pattern of knowledge that is generating spontaneous thought. This pattern can be liked to checkers on a checkerboard. The board represent a network of empty thotons. Each checker represent a single stimulation by an observation. Every square that contains at least one chip is considered to possess some knowledge. The depth or degree of knowledge.

Let us imagine a checkerboard above this one that represents the spatial and temporal pattern of an incoming observation. When the observation falls upon the network, some squares will need only one more checker to fire, but don't get it because there is nothing in that area of the observation. It is a null space in the pattern. Other squares require varying amounts of stimulation to fire and get what they need. Still others have no inherent knowledge existing in the network, yet the size of the observation is so great that it causes firing from the strength of its own intensity.

We see these functions occur throughout psychology, most notably in memory where repetition has an affect as well as cross-referencing. Also, flash memories occur during events of particular intensity.

Returning to the model, when the observation impacts the network, part of its strength will be absorbed and part sent on in the form of thoton firing in the network. That part of the observation that has been well experienced previously will be sent on in its full strength, deeper into the system of the mind, ultimately to trigger reflex action in the neuromotor system. But that which is less experienced, or not experienced at all, will have a portion of its impact, perhaps even all, absorbed by the network. In this manner, the network serves to filter observations so that action is taken based on those portions of the observation that are most familiar. This familiarity is the essence of Ability.

In terms of our four components of the mind, KTAD, if we refine the definition of Knowledge to mean only the binary sense so that a thoton either contains knowledge or it does not, then the depth or degree of that knowledge is Ability.

What we mean by Ability then, is not at all the same as the dictionary definition. We do not mean this component of the mind describes one's physical or mental prowess, rather, we mean that Ability is more akin to experience or familiarity. Why don't we just call it experience? Like a neuron, a single thoton has no idea if the state it is in is due to temporal or spatial summation. So it cannot tell if it is seeing the same thing many times, or the same part of many things.

As described earlier, the quads of the mind have a fractal nature. At a higher psychological level, the relationship between habitation and experience creates the common understanding of Ability. Therefore, at thoton resolution, labeling the quality of knowledge as Ability will later allow us to apply the single KTAD quad anywhere in the model without the need for redefinition.

In conjunction with habitation then, Ability is the percentage of an observation that has been observed before. The greater the percentage match, the less is completely unknown, the less opportunity for risk and the greater the perceived Ability. If existing Knowledge matches an observation completely, Ability is seen to be 100%. If there is no match at all, Ability is zero.

Refining the Model: Desire

Just as Ability is related to Knowledge, Desire is related to Thought. We have defined thought in the thoton as the actual spontaneous firing of a stimulus based on the decay of knowledge. The likelihood or probability of spontaneous firing is logrithmically related to the increasing instability of a thotons energy due to repeated stimulation. It is this probability that describes Desire.

In our checkerboard model, we can see that the thotons in the network with the most checkers will be the most likely to spontaneously fire first. As a result, if there is a repeated pattern of stimulation that suddenly ceases, those thotons fire, recreating the image of the observation. In effect, the network causes internal thought to focus on what is missing.

Certainly such familiar attitudes as the motivation to possess or a sense of grief at personal loss have many parallels to this mechanism. Still, one does not only desire what one has lost, but also what one can imagine as having. The model of Desire accommodates this as well. As different observations cause a continually changing pattern of observations, driven by this seemingly random stimulation, some thotons in the network will receive a full charge and fire in response to no single observation but the overall impact of many. This probability to fire increases as more observations are experienced. The resulting patterns may represent a complex situation that fosters a wide variety of experiences, ultimately reflected in a higher level desire to involve oneself in a certain profession, relationship, activity or environment. Even more unpredictable are truly creative thoughts that bear no direct relationship to any observations actually experienced, but are the result of a synthesis of many different experiences.

Summarizing the Model: KTAD

Starting from the concept of four basic components of the mind, we have shown how they are related in a quad form. This quad form is a physical matrix representing an equation of relativity. Points of view within the quad allow for different arrangements of KTAD, leading to a number of implementations of the equation. Further, the intrinsic relationship of the functions represented by KTAD, acts upon incoming observations to create a synthesis of self-awareness that evolves fractally to higher levels of psychology.


Copyright Melanie Anne Phillips

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