Original Thesis Started in 2002
By going back and looking at the history of life on Earth, this work will show we can have a better understanding of evolution and using this provide an explanation for the biochemical origin for what we term the mind and/or consciousness.
Time is a natural part of the environment and the sense of time is a perceptual sense identical or similar to vision, hearing, sound, touch and taste.
Consciousness is the logical outcome of perceiving time within the environment. Just as advanced organisms can manipulate parts of their environment using arms, claws, feelers, appendages, etc, the brain has evolved to the point where it can perceive and manipulate time which is the source for what humans call the mind and/or consciousness.
This work will show the close relationship between the basic structure of time, its relationship to the kinase CaMKII and how that relates to memory, thought and other aspects of consciousness.
(Original layout, easier navigation, reading here: https://web.archive.org/web/20160304214943/http://functionsofnature.com/ )
It’s a pretty hard question because one uses one’s consciousness when one asks the question thus the conundrum becomes, can I even understand consciousness if I am using it right now – how can I reasonably observe something which is being used to observe itself? How can the observer observe itself without compromising what is observed? This will be answered.
From a purely thought perspective, when one goes in search of this information, what is consciousness, one has to be almost brutal in one’s analytical ability – there can be no compromises, no white lies to ease the pain of the offended or potentially offended, especially oneself. Brutal honesty has to be a key ingredient in any analysis, but it is even more crucial to the undertaking at hand.
Another crucial component is of course knowledge. Beyond simply what we know, we have to examine how do we know it? This question is very important because not only does data exist but we must also understand how that data was collected over the centuries. Then the question of what is knowledge also becomes relevant.
So what is consciousness? I have been looking at what is existence and reality since I was a teenager. It has been the most important thing in my life ever since. Through this search for knowledge it became apparent that our own minds, my mind, consciousness and the brain have a lot to do with what we perceive to be reality. Even at the start of this quest, I came upon a hole in our knowledge.
Many years ago when I was 16 or so I realized that there was a concept out there that we just gloss over as a given. At the time, I did realize it was important, but I wasn’t thinking about it in terms of consciousness, nor was my knowledge level sufficient to finally pull it all together.
Today, over 25 years later, I will start to present what I know now about that blind spot and what is consciousness. Following the exposition of the idea and it’s proofs, I will also strive to present steps to confirm or deny what is stated here and provide a definition what is “thought” and some of what that means across various species including our own.
There are two large, common things for which we have no explanation and unsurprisingly, they are related.
Both Consciousness and Time are concepts that we seem to “know” a lot about but cannot define with any degree of certainty. This thesis will show that there is a geometry of Time and how it relates to consciousness, the mind and the brain.
If you look for definitions of Time all one finds are yardsticks – measuring tools. No idea or knowledge on what exactly is Time – does it have a structure, does it have microscopic particles, what is it other than the rate of radioactive decay?
It would be like defining the world as you perceive it in your eyes only using a ruler – sure measuring physical surfaces yield some information on those surfaces, but says little to nothing of what composes the surface or how the surface interacts with anything else other than in the most crudest fashion, nearly nothing at all about erosion, electrochemistry, friction or a myriad of other properties of the physical world as per physics.
Basic cosmology and maths say we are living in time and space and that space can be represented in three-dimensional equations and time is a closely related fourth dimension.
We know a lot about three-dimensional geometry from a maths perspective and have a lot of equations that can explain a lot of the structures and behaviours of the 3d world. Not so much for 4d other than describing objects moving in a 3d context.
We have started to see some great work of mathematicians who have started to produce 4th dimensional structures in a way we can more easier perceive. A excellent development which will allow for easier understanding of the idea here – that our minds are merely the logical outcome of evolution, that time is a phenomenon part of our environment and that consciousness and our minds are simply functions of the nature of time.
The thesis says that there is a 4th-dimensional or sub- or supra-physical landscape and that our brains evolved to the point to where we not only perceive this 4th dimension or quantum (misnamed and misunderstood in my opinion) aspect of the environment, – time – but can actively manipulate aspects of this time environment to achieve what we term the mind.
We need to refine our understanding of 3D vs 4D and realize just as there are squares circles triangles cones, bricks rocks etc in 3D interacting with each other, so too there are 4D objects that interact with each other and some of these interactions produce effects we experience with our primarily 3D-evolved sensory systems. Another way of saying that is we can perceive and manipulate Time or quantum aspects of our environment and this ability evolved in Nature like other aspects of organisms.
This thesis will show how Time is perceived, what it is, how we may form nodes in Time and how that can describe how thoughts are formed and what memory is, among other things.
To get there, we have to refine our knowledge of evolution to understand what is an evolutionary advance using the criteria by which a mutation or epigenetic expression of an individual can be said to be better evolved than it’s peers – a successful adaptation.
By understanding the outcomes of evolution we can see that when organisms became more complex, early nervous systems had to manage incoming sensory data about the environment within the organism itself – this ability to coordinate is in and of itself a function of Time.
Certainly there are lock and and key systems, i.e. if A is stimulated, then B will occur, methods of environmental interaction. Without these systems being present it is highly unlikely the mind would emerge at all.
However this is only part of the story and does not explain self-awareness, problem solving and many other aspects of what we term the mind.
When there are competing streams of data coming in to the organism that information has to be processed by the organism in a logical and beneficial fashion. Without coordination there would be a cacophony of chaos – there can be no successful organism without sensory coordination. When Time became one of those sensory experiences, consciousness arose in earnest.
This will be supported by among others things, looking at the ability of completely different organisms to problem-solve even though they are not humans (octopi) and why; how cascades in the brain may mimic nodes or the 4d geometry of Time; explaining what memories are, including why those with certain brain-injuries can no longer create new memories yet retain their old memories; glimpses of this through recorded history; and how synthesia can provide some proof of the thesis.