I added this chapter on April 13, 2020, after completing the other chapters on consciousness. Why?
Because like any science, General Epistemology evolves, makes discoveries. In the 20 years since I published its principles, this was bound to happen: detailed theories appeared, on real facts.
Well, it is a bit strange that, after 20 years, I am still the only one using General Epistemology. But that's the problem of those who refuse it, not mine. That Galileo was never recognized by the Church does not prevent space probes from flying. And I am laughing, especially since on the other hand some of my other activities worked well beyond my expectations.
In any case, the time to deliver my final copy is approaching, and my only remaining responsibility is to provide something presentable:
☻ A concise summary of all my deductions about consciousness (like this whole book summarized in one chapter).
☻ A simple, neat and precise operational concept which will put a lot of things in place.
☻ A testable hypothesis, to please Mr. Popper.
This is why this chapter introduces the Cyrlikars©.
(Permalink) Hehe to create a landmark event, and stand out clearly from any other concept: nothing you know comes close to a cyrlikar. It is a bit like black holes, a completely unexpected concept, which people wondered for decades how they look like, what they do, assigned them magical properties and so on. However, «black hole» or «big bang» are clearly unimaginative, awkward terms. Something entirely original, weird, lyrical and mysterious was needed, the production of an entirely new and unexpected science, suddenly emerging from the darkness of ignorance. Well, we were already guessing their silhouette, in chapter V-2 and chapter V-9, but I think it will be better with a chapter dedicated to this concept alone. So we needed an entirely new word.
This name is an acronym in the Tibetan way: «Neural Circuit Linked Karma». Replacing the i by a y is to make it more 1950s mad scientist style. At least it will be successful in social networks!
When we see the origin of words like «quark», or worse «axion», we stay perfectly within accepted science standards.
(Permalink) Even without parapsychology, we see that consciousness strongly interacts with matter. The whole theory must therefore explain how physics lends itself to these interactions. Hence the need for this short summary of the fourth part on physics:
Most people, and even many scientists, consider that the laws of physics describe «how matter behaves». The problem with that, is that it does not explain what matter is. Seen this way, the nature of matter, space and time are deep mysteries, and it seems impossible for matter to bend space or time, as in Relativity.
The problem can be solved in a very simple way, without paradox or vagueness, if we just remove the metaphysical dogma known as materialism, which poses a mysterious «matter» as the basis of physics. The hunt for dogmas is a very popular sport among scientists, yet few have yet dared to tackle this one. So it is my mantelpiece which will be adorned with its stuffed head.
Indeed experiments never allowed to find this absolute matter, and this has been summarized by the Copenhagen Interpretation of Quantum Physics: there is nothing underlying what is observable, which would explain it.
What is interesting, then, is to assume the fact, instead of seeing it as a mystery. This leads us to a positive version of the Copenhagen Interpretation: The logical relations between its elements are enough to describe the observable universe, without needing anything else, especially without assuming that any of these elements would absolutely exist.
I introduce this vision in the third part, by proposing the idea that the physical universe is a logical self-generation process, of the same nature as a mathematical series. This means that it is a series of events, that I call nibs (symbol ¤, Currency, alt+0164), which succession is ruled by a law of cause to effect, that I call self-generation law. In the case of the physical universe, the self-generation law is the set of the laws of physics, and the nibs are the quantum interactions.
But then, if the universe has such an abstract nature, as a series of numbers, with no self-existing matter, then how does it appears us concrete and scientifically observable? Simply because our sense organs, which are material objects, are part of it. Then they receive information from it. Information that they can transmit to our consciousness, where it appears as sensations: contact, images, etc. So our positive Copenhagen interpretation explains this as well: we feel and observe the world, simply thanks to the logical relationship between its elements, even if it does not have any absolute existence.
We remark that this sub-chapter is just another way to present the known physics, without adding anything.
But it is also the understanding of Buddhism. (And remember, correlation is not causation: I am not saying this because I would be a Buddhist, I found it long before, as early as 1972, while I started studying buddhism in 1991).
(Permalink) Neuroscience did a fantastic job at analysing how the brain functions.
This picture shows for example what happens when you drive a car and you see a red light:
☻ The circuits of perception decoding of «red light» information.
☻ The circuits of a reflex arc which, starting from this information in the visual cortex, trigger the «braking» action.
(This is a very simplified presentation. Driving is more complex, and involves many other circuits).
These analyses are extremely relevant, except on one point: how do these activities of the material neurons lead to the appearance of an experience of consciousness, which necessarily is immaterial: the sensation of red?
This difficulty is summarized by David Chalmers and his classification of the problem in two:
☻ The easy problem: how the brain works («easy» not because it is simple, but because it entirely comes down to known physics)
☻ The hard problem: how this activity produces the experiences of consciousness, or Qualia («difficult» not because it would be complicated, but because it is insoluble with known physics).
We can trust the cognitive sciences for the easy problem. But nobody has really tackled the hard problem so far. So it is time to bring my contribution.
(Permalink) We notice, as seen in the second part, that consciousness is an observable entity, even if each of us can (usually) observe only his own. This second part discusses the scientific methods to apprehend this situation.
What we then observe are elements of the consciousness experience, such as sensations, emotions, ideas, intentions, images, etc. However, none of these things can be formed from the particles or fields of physics. Neither can they come out of a quantum physics equation. We therefore need to admit, contrary to the previous materialist dogma, that the elements of the consciousness experience have their own nature, irreducible to physics.
But here too, we tend to consider that there is «something which is conscious»: a self, an ego, a soul, a monad, etc. and we explain consciousness like that. But this view poses the same problem as with matter: what is the nature of this entity?
The solution I propose (and discuss in detail in the fourth part on the nature of consciousness), is to also consider consciousness as a logical self-generation process. But instead of linking quantum leaps in physics, it links elementary instants of the experience of consciousness, and elements of the said experience: sensations, ideas, intentions, images, etc.
This also leads to the equivalent of a «Copenhagen interpretation of consciousness»: to know the logical relations between each elementary instant and elementary content of consciousness, allows us to fully describe consciousness, without assuming any underlying metaphysical entity.
☻ Calling this «Copenhagen interpretation» is justified by the fact that we have the same logical mechanism as for physics. In fact it is a fundamental property of the logical self-generation processes, see chapter III-6, which can also be found in mathematical series.
☻ The word «quantum» has been abused by the pseudosciences. But strictly speaking, any logical self-generation process is, starting with the high school mathematical series. However, I prefer to keep this word for physics, so as not to provide fodder for the pseudosciences.
☻ For the religious, this seems to deny the soul. In fact it does not, for it is enough to consider the soul as being the self-generation process itself. This avoids unnecessary opposition between science and spirituality, or if you prefer it promotes ecumenism with science.
☻ Buddhism proposes a very similar view of the nature of consciousness.
☻ More and more scientists invoke quantum mechanics to try to explain consciousness. I disagree, because consciousness is not material, and thus any material explanation is bound to be false. However they noted that consciousness in the brain shows non-local properties, just as in quantum mechanics. I think that the true reason is that consciousness is indeed non-local. That does not make it «quantum» as in physics, but quantum-like non-locality is a general property of logical self-generation processes.
One last point before introducing the Cyrlikars, is the comparison of the logical self-generation process of physics with the one of consciousness:
☻ In physics, the laws of self-generation are called «the laws of physics». They are are a set of Aristotelian mathematical relationships. Even when probabilities are involved, they remain defined by the laws of mathematical statistics, which still are formalizable. (See chapter I-3 for the types of logic.)
☻ For consciousness, the self-generation laws are generally non-Aristotelian (Chapter I-3). There therefore is no precise correspondence with physics, beyond the general analogies and principles of such processes. We could name them «the laws of consciousness», but this sounds too much like other vague expressions used in ethics or in pseudo-spirituality. Authentic spiritual traditions, on the other hand, have a precise word for this: the karma. We can therefore call «karma» the set of self-generation laws of consciousness. This is what we shall do now.
This, of course, presupposes that we forget about Lobsang Rampa and the boobtube, and that we study what karma really is. Especially, the karma is not a «divine punishment», although it can produce this kind of results if we provoke it.
Karma is a set of laws: habit, attraction of similar, etc. Its operation is very visible in precise moments like NDEs, where it activates the switches of our life. Spiritual currents such as Buddhism, Jainism and Hinduism give usable descriptions of the karma.
(Permalink) Neuroscience indicates that a given consciousness experience occurs when a neural network activates one of its trainings. For example, the visual cortex can recognize several flowers, but we are only aware of the flower which is actually perceived by the eye, and which activates one of the trainings of a given group of neurons in the visual cortex.
This still arises a problem. Let us consider for example the auditory cortex. We have (while simplifying) one neuron per note, and each neuron is activated when the ear receives the corresponding note. Yes, very well, but these neurons are all the same!! And there are no axons going to note identification circuits, only unconscious reflex pathways, as seen in the images above. But then, how can all identical neurons produce different sensations? This arrangement is very general, however, because many neuronal circuits produce each very specific experiences of consciousness: sensations, sounds, colours, images, intentions, etc. The neurons of sight, sound, maths, sex, pain, etc. are all the same!
The only solution is that it is the self-generation process of consciousness itself which produces this imputation. A given element of the experience of consciousness appears when the corresponding learning of a neural network is activated.
We thus have a point-by-point, bijective correspondence between the neural circuits, and the type of experience that consciousness imputes to them. And also, in a given circuit, between each learning and each consciousness experience precisely.
This definition comes:
A Cyrlikar© is the functional association of a neural network, and the type of consciousness experience felt when the network is activated.
Example: the visual cortex produces the sensations of colours, the audition cortex the sensations of sound, etc.
In a given cyrlikar, the activation of each learning or output of the neural network raises one experience of consciousness of its type.
Thus each learning of the visual cortex raises the sensation of one given colour, each output of the audition cortex raises the feeling of one given note (to simplify), etc.
This is summarized in the image below:
This relationship even seems extremely precise, with thousands of neural networks in our brain, each producing tens or even thousands of different experiences of consciousness, with no communication between neurons, and no mixing between these different experiences. This precision can only be explained if it is produced by consciousness.
We can therefore consider that the Cyrlikar is the basic unit of the conscious brain. Some may include circuits in their neurons for unconscious calculating and processing of information. Or several circuits and their cyrlikars act in concert to code and elicit complex concepts or reasoning.
Finally, it is important to note that a cyrlikar cannot be reduced to a neuronal learning alone (many neuronal learnings and even entire networks do not produce any consciousness experience), nor to the karma of consciousness alone (it would then give a kind of dream, unrelated to neurons: we would not perceive the world).
Thus a Cyrlikar is neither a material object nor a consciousness experience: it is the functional union of the two.
Well, undeniably Cyrlikars exist: to deny it would be to deny consciousness itself, an absurd, masochistic and anti-scientific position. The novelty is to consider neurones and consciousness as an inseparable functional whole (except at death, we shall see this case later).
I also propose a symbol:
The square part is the material part, governed by the laws of physics, the domain of neurons and neuroscience. The round part is the spiritual or non-Aristotelian part, governed by karma, domain of Qualia or experiences of consciousness. The vertical separation does not mark a Manichean-type opposition, but on the contrary the inseparable union of the two. To insist on this point, this separation has «holes». The horizontal lines indicate the bijection between the learning of the neural network, and the corresponding experience of consciousness. If necessary, an arrow can be added, in one direction or in the other. Unfortunately, I do not know of any pre-existing UTF8 characters which would be suitable. One will have to be created.
The most remarkable point is that a cyrlikar is made up of both material and spiritual structures in the same time: this is what makes it a novelty in sciences. But not for spirituality, which knowns for long the action of symbols.
(Permalink) A simple logical self-generation process, like a mathematical series, is completely closed on itself: no information enters or leaves it.
At first glance, this seems to be the case for the self-generation process of our physical universe: no other influences it, and our sense organs cannot perceive other universes.
This should also be the case for the self-generation process of consciousness. However, it is clear that this process receives massive information from the process of the physical world. This information is physically transmitted to the brain by the sense organs, toward the neural networks of the brain. From there, each Cyrlikar sends it to the consciousness process.
There is only one possible explanation: receiving information through the physical sense organs is part of the logical self-generation law of consciousness.
How is this possible? We saw in chapter III-3, point 6, that it is enough that both systems are branches of the same ancestor system. In the case of consciousness, we can imagine many ways in which it could have appeared, from the moment that the brains became capable of manipulating information of several categories:
☻ A representation of the world
☻ An issue, like feeding or escaping a predator
☻ emotions, which at first existed as physical polarizations of the neural networks.
It can also be assumed, again from point 6, that a specific event (special nib) triggered the separation of the two processes.
The self-generation process of consciousness would thus be a branch of the physical world process. (This is the simplest solution. There are other solutions, where the physical world has been intentionally created by pre-existing consciousnesses. In the present state of knowledge, we cannot know what happened exactly.).
(Permalink) In the fifth part on consciousness, we saw that usually the consciousness contains only the elements which are aroused in it by the brain. We called this state psychological consciousness, or neuronal consciousness. It is the state of consciousness described by the cognitive sciences, where consciousness is only a mirror of the activity of the neurons, the latter being the only cause of all our thoughts, emotions and actions.
In this state of consciousness, however, there is no free-will. Indeed, neurons are material objects, which do not contain any information about ethics, happiness, or a possible meaning of life. And especially nothing about any kind of transcendence. It is therefore an extremely miserable, hallucinated state of consciousness, where people believe they are obliged to inflict enormous suffering on themselves. Indeed, neurons do not suffer. But the consciousness they drive, on its side, it suffers. And a single neuron can inflict us untold torture for years, with things like racism or drug addiction. For this reason, spirituality proposes meditation techniques to pacify the neurons, and also to release the frenetic attachment of consciousness to their activity.
When enough release happens, it then allows the process of self-generation of consciousness to function autonomously, without the need for inputs from the physical process. There therefore exist various intermediate states of consciousness (chapter V-8) between neuronal consciousness and purely spiritual consciousness. Some result from meditation, others occur spontaneously, such as the moments of super-consciousness: an element of information reaches the consciousness without passing through the sensory organs or the brain.
Indeed, once an information path exists between two logical self-generation processes, there is no reason it restricts itself to the bottleneck of the sensory organs. Indeed experiencers of NDE (chapter V-9), astral voyage (sleep paralysis) or superconsciousness instants (chapter V-8), routinely report large flows of direct perception of the physical world (ESP), shunting the sensory organs. But in the ordinary neuronal consciousness state, the consciousness is grasping so hard at the output of the sensory organs, that it makes us deaf and blind to any other information path. This is the only reason why we are not massively experiencing ESP and telepathy, and it is our fault.
But what happens at death, when the brain stops? (chapter V-9) The consciousness then stops receiving information through the Cyrlikars. But their «karma» part is still here!!! This is then what allows the consciousness to still have a content: everything stored in the inventory of the Cyrlikars, images, sounds, perfumes, concepts, ideas, etc. continues to exist in the consciousness, as a stock of karma. Thus during NDEs, people continue to see a world which, in the end, looks very much like ours.
(Permalink) Added on May 27, 2020: The concept of cyrlikar clarifies how a given consciousness is so strongly linked to only one brain: it is the habit (karma) of this consciousness, to be linked to the neural activity of this brain precisely. The relationship with another brain simply does not exist. Otherwise, we would wake up every morning in the body of somebody else at random. A thing which thanksfully never happens.
A consciousness using another brain is possible, still. When hostile, it is called possession, aiming at injecting noxious content in the psyche of the attacked person. When positive, it is called incorporation, or adombrement. This is for instance what does the Netchung oracle. He necessarily needs some specific karmic talent for doing that: there are stories of Him running on roofs while shooting arrows with an incredible accuracy. He must be able to find out the neural commands of movements, which are different for each person. Probably his choice of a receiving monk (the Kuten) is a function of the later’s unique neural circuits.
This arises a problem: to what exactly the consciousness is attached? The body? The neurons? Their layout, topology or functionality? My best guess it that the consciousness is linked to the meaningful content the neural activity is coding for, when this activity happens. Most consciousnesses crave for neural input, to the point of obliterating anything else. This is what NDE show: as soon as this neural content stops being produced, the consciousness loses contact with the brain, even if the later is still intact. So clearly the consciousness is not linked to the physical brain itself.
So that, when designing artificial neural networks intended to host a consciousness (chapter V-18), we have a degree of freedom we don’t have with the natural brain: we can save the topology of the neural network in a computer file (extension: .cno), and reload it in another integrated circuit: the consciousness should work as well with this new «incarnation» as well. Or should we say «insilication©»?
(Permalink) Can information pass from consciousness to the brain? Such occurrences are indeed observed, the simplest being free-will. We saw in chapter V-3 how it works. Let us repeat it, using the concept of Cyrlikar:
For an act of free-will to occur, we need that two neuronal learnings in an appropriate cyrlikar (related to ethics, emotions, etc.) each provide equal level outputs. What the person feels at this moment is a dilemma between two choices, for example between compassion and selfishness. But what happens at the level of the neural network is a logical indeterminacy. We saw in Chapter III-3 that this situation can enrich a logical self-generation process with a new self-generation law (case of the Big Bang phase transitions), or at least produce a «special nib» (point 6), which is a limited exception to one of the self-generation law (case of the symmetry violations in the RHIC experiment). Of course, if we admit that matter is «real» and consciousness is «abstract», the second cannot influence the first. We must therefore remove these epicycles, and start on the hypothesis of the logical self-generation processes, where matter and consciousness are of equal existential statute. This is what allows them to exchange information, exchanges which appear to us as «parapsychological phenomena» (chapter VII-4). Yes it's just that. Nothing mysterious or surnatural.
But consciousness, on its side, knows perfectly well the answer to the dilemma between altruism and selfishness. So, what happens then is that, thanks to the logical indeterminacy, its influence can become stronger than the one of the neurons: their output state is then forced to altruism, in a special nib modifying together consciousness and the state of the physical system (the output of the neural network). The person then feels the revelation of altruism. Then the neurons resume their normal functioning. At this point however, the material brain naturally has the property of modifying its own neuronal learnings, even after an unique but moving experience. So, it modifies the learning of this network: the person is now permanently more altruistic, even if he or she returns to the usual purely neuronal consciousness.
For this to work, however, the neural networks must be receptive to the influence of consciousness. Fortunately, there is a slight influence of consciousness on random, analogical or quantum physical phenomena. This phenomenon has been demonstrated through several experiments in the Princeton University, PEAR and the Global Consciousness Project,, thanks to the statistical analysis of a large number of random drawings. Such an influence (less than 1%) is usually inoperative. But in the case of a neural network with a large number of analogical parameters, it could be multiplied, with each neuron making an intelligent contribution, instead of a simple statistical average over a large number of drawings.
This is why a cyrlikar would be the best device to test the whole theory.
(Permalink) This was for the theory. As for the proofs, they are still weak. But I can make here a coherent and testable proposal («falsifiable» according to Popper's term), which would firmly validate the whole theory. Some rather extraordinary results are already present: sit down before reading the continuation.
It is quite easy to observe conscious free-will (chapter V-3) thanks to spiritual techniques. But it would be very difficult today to detect its material counterpart in the brain. Such a materially observable result is useless for the spiritual practitioner, but it would bring the test on the field of classical material science. It could therefore be decisive in tipping the materialist paradigm. In short, it would be an historical experiment.
To obviate this difficulty, the idea is to create an artificial Cyrlikar, based on an electronic neural network. An influence of consciousness would then manifest itself through a materially measurable output of electronic neurons, easy to detect.
I describe such an experiment in a novel, «Why Daddy he not comes», and claim antecedence since the creation of this story for the winter gala on December 12, 2016 in the former virtual world Inworldz.
The advantage of an artificial cyrlikar is that it does not generate a whole lot of parasitic activity, as a brain would. Moreover, you only need to pull a wire from any neuron, to observe its activity.
I still not have any fixed idea about the topology of the network, nor about how the person would create the karma of using it. Probably the artificial Cyrlikar would include a learning for each person, towards a practical output, such as an alphabet, or the controls for a virtual character.
On the other hand, I have a much more precise idea of the artificial neurons, which criteria we already saw in chapter VI-18. They would be built on the Sigma-Phi-Upsilon model, an extension of the classical Sigma-Phi system, with in addition an Upsilon noise source («entropy» on the picture), ideally Gaussian. Such a source can be added in integrated circuits, and some learning algorithms already use noise sources.
The purpose of the random noise source is to allow for the influence of consciousness, through a slight modification of the average signal value. But this noise source must be non-deterministic, with high entropy in technical jargon. A result that I had predicted as early as 2000, but which has since been proven by the PEAR experiments (scientific paper here). Indeed, these experiments also shown that a pseudo-random (deterministic) generator is insensitive to the operator's intent:
… when source #3, which retains some physically random features, is utilized, statistically significant correlations of results with operator intention, comparable to those seen in the benchmark experiments, continue to appear. For the strictly deterministic sources #1 and #2, however, no such correlations are observed.
(Sources No. 1, 2 and 3 were all pseudo-random generators, but No. 3 had a clock which frequency varied in analogical way, the operator choosing the moment to press a key).
However, the experiment found no measurable difference between an analogical random generator and a quantum random generator. My intuition still tells me that a unique quantum event would be more interesting... at least by its prestige, which would help a lot to create the karma part, lol!
The above PEAR publication shows other extraordinary effects, which an artificial cyrlikar would allow to easily reproduce by a large number of people:
☻ Independence of the distance between the random generator and the person trying to influence it. (There are other sources mentioning telepathy experiments from Antarctica, and astronaut Edgar Mitchell claimed to have successfully performed one from the Moon).
☻ The experiment continues to provide the same results, despite a time difference of several days between the operation of the random generator and the action of the person trying to influence it! (Other sources also mention such time lags, and some UFO cases such as the Valdez affair).
Of course a single source is not sufficient to establish a fact as a scientific truth. Nevertheless, the quality of the PEAR publication is a strong incentive to try to reproduce these experiments, or other experiments like the artificial cyrlikar I propose above.
Indeed, such violations of the normal flow of time, carried out with such a simple method, clearly demonstrate the presence of another logical self-generation system, interfering with the one of the physical world. The system of consciousness in this case.
This happens because non-locality and non-temporality are fundamental properties of logical self-generation processes: it is time which is an illusion resulting from the operation of the process, not the process which unfolds in any absolute time (Chapter IV-3). Normally this property cannot be observed from within a single process such as our physical world, where reigns the illusion of an absolute time. But this property of logical self-generation processes makes that the times in two different systems are incommensurable (we cannot find any linear or unequivocal correspondence between them). Hence the time shifts which are observable when two logical self-generation processes interact.
It is therefore understandable that Wikipedia, and its damned soul the fundamentalist materialist group Wikipedia Guerrilla Skeptics (Wayback machine), took so much trouble to have the PEAR study censored. But it remains visible (with the Princeton URLs) on the wayback machine, or on the site of the ICRL (the former PEAR team). This stench reminds us that science is not yet safe. The denial of consciousness could be the next big disinformation war, after the denial of climate change. And with even more serious consequences.
We must therefore stand up to the warnings in Chapter II-9, including triple-blind testing, and discreet research until we have unassailable results which can be massively reproduced by all.
In fact, I am no longer alone, and the science research on consciousness is getting organized. So there will be news, and I shall report them.
Ideas, texts, drawings and realization: Richard Trigaux.
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