Second Sight

#1
Second sight is a descriptive term that alludes to an experience that is more than that of the normal 5 senses. Many here on these forums are concerned about having these experiences personally; or in claiming that second sight experiences are confused and not scientific. There is lust for them, despair at not having them and fury over the claim that they are real experiences in a material world.

A pragmatic approach is offered; where they are nothing more than (and nothing less than) an integrated experience of the faculty commonly called the understanding. The ability to understand a pattern, is essential to what is a successful mental process. An understanding is had by agent who takes sensory signals, compares them to an internal database and makes abstract judgments about their relations and then comprehends a unified conceptualization.

The thesis presented in this thread is simply what is known as a physic-like event, is simply a vivid expression of "the understanding". The understanding being no more than a sense, like the five senses, but is a direct perception of structured information objects. As the thread progresses, definitions of "information objects", direct perception and "understanding as a sensation" will be offered and hopefully debated rigorously.

Note: as disambiguation it is acknowledged that the publication by Jim Carpenter called First Sight, is a parallel set of ideas, but developed in detail and supported by clear analysis and data. Craig Weiler, a member of this forum, has written an excellent review of Carpenter's book - https://weilerpsiblog.wordpress.com/2013/10/31/first-sight-a-comprehensive-theory-of-psi/

This thread is about a highly generalized and simple approach. One that embraces every encounter of "deep meaning" experienced in a vast multitude of ways, where an understanding is an actual occurrence. Experiences that bring an actual personal understanding to their experiencer in a subjective mode. Second sight is just this, hunches that pan-out, imaginative plans that result in drives to actualize them, visions of art works, visions of lovers not yet embraced & all manner of psi tinged perceptions.

I offer a iconic example, leading to a process analysis of this subject, as a quotation from several hundred years ago: "Thinking from the eye closes understanding, but thinking from understanding opens the eye." E. Swedenborg

In this brief sentence - is defined the difference between afferent sensory information (vision in this example) - from integrated information that is found in abstract thought about circumstances. The second sight, coming from the understanding is infused with meaning. This meaning not truly located in the sensory bits or bytes that enter the optic nerve, yet carries with it objective potential to change real world events.
 
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#2
Second sight is a descriptive term that alludes to an experience that is more than that of the normal 5 senses. Many here on these forums are concerned about having these experiences personally; or in claiming that second sight experiences are confused and not scientific. There is lust for them, despair at not having them and fury over the claim that they are real experiences in a material world.

A pragmatic approach is offered; where they are nothing more than (and nothing less than) an integrated experience of the faculty commonly called the understanding. The ability to understand a pattern, is essential to what is a successful mental process. An understanding is had by agent who takes sensory signals, compares them to an internal database and makes abstract judgments about their relations and then comprehends a unified conceptualization.

The thesis presented in this thread is simply what is known as a physic-like event, is simply a vivid expression of "the understanding". The understanding being no more than a sense, like the five senses, but is a direct perception of structured information objects. As the thread progresses, definitions of "information objects", direct perception and "understanding as a sensation" will be offered and hopefully debated rigorously.

Note: as disambiguation it is acknowledged that the publication by Jim Carpenter called First Sight, is a parallel set of ideas, but developed in detail and supported by clear analysis and data. Craig Weiler, a member of this forum, has written an excellent review of Carpenter's book - https://weilerpsiblog.wordpress.com/2013/10/31/first-sight-a-comprehensive-theory-of-psi/

This thread is about a highly generalized and simple approach. One that embraces every encounter of "deep meaning" experienced in a vast multitude of ways, where an understanding is an actual occurrence. Experiences that bring an actual personal understanding to their experiencer in a subjective mode. Second sight is just this, hunches that pan-out, imaginative plans that result in drives to actualize them, visions of art works, visions of lovers not yet embraced & all manner of psi tinged perceptions.

I offer a iconic example, leading to a process analysis of this subject, as a quotation from several hundred years ago: "Thinking from the eye closes understanding, but thinking from understanding opens the eye." E. Swedenborg

In this brief sentence - is defined the difference between afferent sensory information (vision in this example) - from integrated information that is found in abstract thought about circumstances. The second sight, coming from the understanding is infused with meaning. This meaning not truly located in the sensory bits or bytes that enter the optic nerve, yet carries with it objective potential to change real world events.
Well I've just returned from a visit to the cellar of Treasurers House, York, and I'll be interested to read this thread. But I'll only be able to participate if you use very basic language to describe your ideas, rather than the complex language you use here (and elsewhere). There is no criticism intended, I'm just being direct, and pointing out that I struggle to pin down what you mean in an everyday sort of way when you launch into this sort of stuff.
 
#3
Well I've just returned from a visit to the cellar of Treasurers House, York, and I'll be interested to read this thread. But I'll only be able to participate if you use very basic language to describe your ideas, rather than the complex language you use here (and elsewhere). There is no criticism intended, I'm just being direct, and pointing out that I struggle to pin down what you mean in an everyday sort of way when you launch into this sort of stuff.
I don't think it is so much the language that you find difficult, it is the ideas. I think you have to take this as a "what if" experiment. This is perfectly scientific, for example, a mathematician might try to explore what might follow if Riemann's hypothesis is true. I think you need to ask yourself what if consciousness really is non-material, and only connects with the brain in a way analogous to the way a transmitter connects with a radio (or perhaps better, a Mars rover) ( BTW, analogies only work if you don't take them excessively literally).

From that point of view, you have a mind that has resources of its own - that don't use the brain or its senses - but that while we are alive, these resources are used to keep the brain (and body) on a useful track - a bit like when we drive a car, the car does all the work, but we cause that to be useful in some way.

I think that hypothesis is something like right, but you can still explore the idea without committing to the idea (as you know, I am reluctant to commit to any idea totally).

David
 
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#4
Well I've just returned from a visit to the cellar of Treasurers House, York, and I'll be interested to read this thread. But I'll only be able to participate if you use very basic language to describe your ideas, rather than the complex language you use here (and elsewhere). There is no criticism intended, I'm just being direct, and pointing out that I struggle to pin down what you mean in an everyday sort of way when you launch into this sort of stuff.
This is the shaping of a very rough-cut model. Following only natural patterns, there is intent to probe and reveal the outlines of a common-sense, simple version regarding "how-it-happens", as mind operates in a material environment. The word, consciousness, is a vague and general term about a broad range of modes for processing both bio-information and meaning. To start, I am going to attack at the core of mind - not centered on a vague term: "consciousness" - but on the processes that take place when information is integrated and understanding is the result.

Modern biology understands the senses as a flow of signals to biological receptors, with output to the brain. These signals are stimuli that may, or may not, cause a behavioral response. I suggest that the operating pattern of the 5 senses is the same for second sight. Second sight is simply the straightforward reception and detection of objects in the environment. Detection is only possible with actual natural objects. The mind is focused on these structures, albeit abstract structures, which are integral fabric to ongoing reality.

Formal information flows from organic events within the biological receptors of the senses (the eye as an example). This channel becomes the way into the nervous system's communicative network sharing bits and bytes about the environment. I see no place for meaning in this segment of the physical channel – only the transfer of electrical signal patterns. The optic and auditory nerves are not signaling a decoded external meaning. All the potential meaning associated with the natural and logical procession of events is still in the outside environment. The brain is just getting the optical signals to decode and integrate. The brain's work with meaningful decision-making must be recreated on the inside, from external stimuli. Logical circumstances from the outside stay out there, since they are lost in the transmission via the nerves leading to the brain.

"Thought from the eye" is exemplified by the flat-earth idiom. The perspective of the normative animal is to unconsciously assign a horizontal plane as being the geometric reference for gravity. It takes both new data and intelligence to understand that the correct geometric perspective is a tangent, perpendicular to a vector aimed at the center of the earth. Physical orientation from the senses, at ambient scales, leads to an incorrect thought. Knowledge of the earth as a sphere, combined with an understanding of patterns of space, can help the understanding correctly conceive of gravity being a pull to a central location beneath the feet. And in this way, it explains how people on the other side of the globe don't fall off. Knowing how gravity works is an understanding and can help train the eye to see reality. This leads to correct and more in-depth experience, when one climbs to a point where the earth's curvature is visible.

So, a mental "information object", imaged by a mind's eye, reveals itself as being the most common sense of all mental experiences - a thought that contains an understanding. The advantage of this approach is objects can be informationally real. Analysis of influential thoughts is centuries old. There is a new way to study Information objects. When represented, they have measurably structured Shannon entropy, and when understood enough to be explained, they carry meaning ready to be communicated. Objects of mental focus are understood meanings of useful information. New meanings to this objective information (think meme), also follow from continuing influence on minds as time moves forward.

An ordered and deeply-felt idea can bring influence and make organized changes to its environment. Objectively, as much as information objects run as code in programs, we can measure their integration of facts and meanings in the terms of logic. There are measures for changing productivity, when organization from good ideas is well-represented in the environment. Information objects can evolve and run-down. Tracking them is the root work of history.

Mind must have evolved tied to the material substrates on which its programs developed. Is it OK now to just come out a say - biological information processing is a natural process! And naturally, it has evolved to be focused on immaterial abstract probabilities and personal meanings!


.
 
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#5
This is the shaping of a very rough-cut model. Following only natural patterns, there is intent to probe and reveal the outlines of a common-sense, simple version regarding "how-it-happens", as mind operates in a material environment. The word, consciousness, is a vague and general term about a broad range of modes for processing both bio-information and meaning. To start, I am going to attack at the core of mind - not centered on a vague term: "consciousness" - but on the processes that take place when information is integrated and understanding is the result.

Modern biology understands the senses as a flow of signals to biological receptors, with output to the brain. These signals are stimuli that may, or may not, cause a behavioral response. I suggest that the operating pattern of the 5 senses is the same for second sight. Second sight is simply the straightforward reception and detection of objects in the environment. Detection is only possible with actual natural objects. The mind is focused on these structures, albeit abstract structures, which are integral fabric to ongoing reality.

Formal information flows from organic events within the biological receptors of the senses (the eye as an example). This channel becomes the way into the nervous system's communicative network sharing bits and bytes about the environment. I see no place for meaning in this segment of the physical channel – only the transfer of electrical signal patterns. The optic and auditory nerves are not signaling a decoded external meaning. All the potential meaning associated with the natural and logical procession of events is still in the outside environment. The brain is just getting the optical signals to decode and integrate. The brain's work with meaningful decision-making must be recreated on the inside, from external stimuli. Logical circumstances from the outside stay out there, since they are lost in the transmission via the nerves leading to the brain.

"Thought from the eye" is exemplified by the flat-earth idiom. The perspective of the normative animal is to unconsciously assign a horizontal plane as being the geometric reference for gravity. It takes both new data and intelligence to understand that the correct geometric perspective is a tangent, perpendicular to a vector aimed at the center of the earth. Physical orientation from the senses, at ambient scales, leads to an incorrect thought. Knowledge of the earth as a sphere, combined with an understanding of patterns of space, can help the understanding correctly conceive of gravity being a pull to a central location beneath the feet. And in this way, it explains how people on the other side of the globe don't fall off. Knowing how gravity works is an understanding and can help train the eye to see reality. This leads to correct and more in-depth experience, when one climbs to a point where the earth's curvature is visible.

So, a mental "information object", imaged by a mind's eye, reveals itself as being the most common sense of all mental experiences - a thought that contains an understanding. The advantage of this approach is objects can be informationally real. Analysis of influential thoughts is centuries old. There is a new way to study Information objects. When represented, they have measurably structured Shannon entropy, and when understood enough to be explained, they carry meaning ready to be communicated. Objects of mental focus are understood meanings of useful information. New meanings to this objective information (think meme), also follow from continuing influence on minds as time moves forward.

An ordered and deeply-felt idea can bring influence and make organized changes to its environment. Objectively, as much as information objects run as code in programs, we can measure their integration of facts and meanings in the terms of logic. There are measures for changing productivity, when organization from good ideas is well-represented in the environment. Information objects can evolve and run-down. Tracking them is the root work of history.

Mind must have evolved tied to the material substrates on which its programs developed. Is it OK now to just come out a say - biological information processing is a natural process! And naturally, it has evolved to be focused on immaterial abstract probabilities and personal meanings!


.
I dunno what to say Stephen, you've obviously laboured on this, but it just goes over my head. Seems like a lot of assertions, without much in the way of easy explanations, or very simple real world examples that I can get to grips with...
 
#6
I dunno what to say Stephen, you've obviously laboured on this, but it just goes over my head. Seems like a lot of assertions, without much in the way of easy explanations, or very simple real world examples that I can get to grips with...
Current efforts in the modeling of mind are focused on consciousness and qualia. I suggest a focus on the "how" of understanding, as the key functional aspect of knowing anything. The process is the use of natural informational assets for survival and fulfillment. These assets are affordances and are the focus of the function of understanding.

The "how" of understanding is the same mode of information detection as the five senses. A pattern of information is encountered by a living thing and the pattern is interpreted in the context of the organism. What is problematic - is that information is not seen as directly detectable. Hence, this approach is little pursued. Yet, J. J. Gibson addresses direct perception as the best explanation, more than 60 years ago.

Seeing the understanding function of mind as an integration of information fits with the efforts to measure Phi by G. Tononi.
 
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