Does the Brain Create the Mind?

This topic contains 15 replies, has 6 voices, and was last updated by  Aurora Carlson 4 years ago.

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  • #4636 Score: 1

    Deepak Chopra
    Moderator
    60 votes
    @deepakchopra

    In this video I am reading from the chapter Does the Brain Create the Mind? and answering a few questions.

    Questions:
    “Does the brain create the mind? Does the mind create the brain?
    Does it matter? Why is it important to know? Will it make a difference to how I live my life?”

    Let me know what you think!

    Love,
    Deepak

    This post has received 1 vote up.
  • #5203 Score: 2

    duckduckbearbear
    Participant
    4 votes
    @duckduckbearbear

    Dear Deepak,

    Thank you for starting this discussion. From what I understand, your main points are:
    1) “Both mind and brain are not reality. They are models of reality.” (6:15)
    2) There are 5 reasons you have come up with for why a computer and mind are different–why a computer is not a good model for how the mind works. (4:45)
    3) “Both mind and body and brain and universe, are modified forms of awareness. In fact, they are nothing other than awareness.” (10:40)

    May I respectfully share my experience of watching your video:
    1) You look so cool!! i love how you are wearing a hoodie and look so comfortable and casual. i appreciate how slowly and comfortably you speak. You are not afraid of being seen in your authentic state and sharing your thoughts, despite being a high-profile celebrated person. This inspired me to create an account here to communicate with this community. Please forgive the awkwardness of my communication style. i have NVLD.
    2) The words in your video, unfortunately appear backwards to me sometimes. This is an artifact of the front-facing camera.
    3) I very much enjoyed how from minutes 3-5 or so, you outlined the evolution of consciousness along several different animal lineages. I have often had similar ponderings!

    My main reaction to your video is in response to your statement:
    “Minds understand concepts; Computers understand nothing.” (5:00)
    I liked this sentence very much, though I disagree with your distinctions between computers and brains. There was, to me, an edge of dismissiveness in your tone regarding computers becoming conscious. I question this… perhaps I have watched too much Westworld or read too much from Ray Kurzweil, but I am not sure that computers may not eventually develop consciousness. Though trained to follow commands, if they were eventually programmed to follow internal rather than external commands.. to have some kind of randomness generator within.. how could we say they are less conscious than a plant or other “living thing,” per se? How do we as humble consciousnesses recognizing our limited place in evolution… how do we fully exclude the possibility that computers may eventually become conscious? How do we know that the same electrochemical flow coursing through our neurons, does not generate a consciousness within a CPU or motherboard or sensing from a touchscreen?

    What if computers truly understand “nothing,” the same “nothing” that was there before the Big Bang, the same Void from which the Ten Thousand Things and every concept emerged?

    I am interested in hearing your thoughts on this. You are right in being concerned that “modern science” does not have the whole truth, and I appreciate your efforts to bring deeper spiritual truths to the worldwide conversation taking place. If you feel moved to, please consider connecting with or exploring the AI community, as I believe you have much to offer there. If the robots of tomorrow are programmed with only the wishes of their masters in mind, we risk unbalancing the world further as a species.

    Thank you for your deep listening to all that is around you. I am not sure what pulled me to your website today. I am supposed to be editing a scientific paper. Will return to that now.

    Sincerely,
    ddbb

    This post has received 2 votes up.
    • #5340 Score: 0

      Aurora Carlson
      Keymaster
      110 votes
      @aurorac

      Hello DDBB, a warm welcome to the #YATU community!

      I very much enjoyed reading about your experience of watching the video, I love your enthusiasm and I share the appreciation for Deepak’s natural style. I guess self-knowledge and self-acceptance on all levels has this effect, and he demonstrates how totally relaxed and enjoyable life can be for us all.

      I found your follow up thoughts and the implied question interesting:

      I am not sure that computers may not eventually develop consciousness

      After reading You Are the Universe I would say that the authors’ message is that consciousness is not something that is developed from matter. Yes, this is the physicalist view which is very widespread and most of us are conditioned from birth to believe it. But the whole book is a presentation of why that can’t be true and why it is much more rational to see consciousness as the ground from which matter and also thoughts and feelings arise.

      So DDBB, if matter doesn’t give rise to consciousness, then robots won’t either. Matter doesn’t have thoughts and emotions. Consciousness does. Matter doesn’t think. Consciousness does. Robots don’t think and neither do humans. Consciousness thinks 🙂

      You see what I mean?

    • #5524 Score: 0

      Deepak Chopra
      Moderator
      60 votes
      @deepakchopra

      Dear @duckduckbearbear, thank you for your question! I have answered in Readers Ask: Can Computers Develop Consciousness?

      Love,
      Deepak

  • #5334 Score: 1

    lilianna.deveneau
    Participant
    19 votes
    @lilianna-deveneau

    Deer Deepak,

    Thank you so much for all the loving work being done by you, your coauthor, and your team. As you explain throughout the book, “the body is a modified form of awareness” and the “mind/brain are models of reality.” The intricate mural of reality is co-created by our consciousness, as You Are the Universe contends. I not only know this intuitively, but physically. As I was diagnosed with a rare chronic disability at a young age, I was used to listing all that I could not do. And though I was told by medical professionals I was stuck with the disease forever, a strong resistance boiled within. That’s when I first started to notice the effects of this truth through small changes in my self-perception. I then found your book Reinventing the Body, Resurrecting the Soul: How to Create a New You, in which you attested genes could be turned on and off. If this is true, I thought, I don’t want arthritis anymore. I want to be able to hold a coffee mug or dance without pain. I became conscious of how I was treating my body, and how my internal treatment was linked to my outer being. I began listening to my intuition and really trusting it for the first time. I became honest with my feelings, rather than trying to “nice” them away. I had falsely believed that reaching “perfection” would deliver me. Meditation and self-reflection became daily practices. And the more attuned to my own self I became, the more physical strength I gained. Soon the pain and swelling were distant memories of a past, caged life. Every aspect of my experience, from what I wear to which mode of transportation I choose (usually myself!), has been impacted by this consciousness shift, and I know I’m still in the early stages of recognizing the results. I am humbled and grateful to be transformed by a simple truth that still shocks me to say to myself: You Are the Universe! Thank you both for sharing the realization of infinite possibilities with the world in hopes of empowering us all to live a fruitful, loving, conscious journey—in each moment. I now recommend BOTH of these books at every opportunity!

    Light and love,
    Lili

    This post has received 1 vote up.
    • #5341 Score: 1

      Aurora Carlson
      Keymaster
      110 votes
      @aurorac

      Dear Lili, thank you so much for sharing your beautiful story of awakening and transformation! I’d like you to know that both authors have read, appreciated and even tweeted your story when you posted it the first time!

      I am so grateful that you reposted this! We in the moderation team hoped you would, as you happened to post just when the forum moved to another system and a few posts vanished in the transition, including yours. I apologize for that technical glitch, we couldn’t find you to tell you what happened, but we are happy to see you and looking forward to your contributions on the forum!

      This post has received 1 vote up.
  • #5403 Score: 1

    lilianna.deveneau
    Participant
    19 votes
    @lilianna-deveneau

    Hi Aurora,

    Wow, that is absolutely fabulous to hear about both authors sharing! I figured a glitch was responsible, which was why I summarized the last post while addressing your questions of responsibility and ownership from the previous reply. I remain grateful to participate with such an inspiring group of souls. Thank you all, and I look forward to more beautiful and helpful conversations!

    Light and love,
    Lili

    This post has received 1 vote up.
    • #5422 Score: 0

      Aurora Carlson
      Keymaster
      110 votes
      @aurorac

      Thank you Lili, we’re grateful to have you here! 🙂

  • #5533 Score: 1

    Elan
    Participant
    9 votes
    @elan

    “DOES THE BRAIN CREATE THE MIND?”

    If Brains Create Mind
    then my intentions to choose any actions or distinction is lost.
    And thus I might also have to wait for the my computer to turn me off ???
    (That is a purposefully stated insight”

    This post has received 1 vote up.
    • #5541 Score: 0

      Aurora Carlson
      Keymaster
      110 votes
      @aurorac

      Chuckling with you Elan 🙂 If I may, I will use that in my next discussion with a physicalist… who knows, maybe they will notice how absurd it is!

  • #5614 Score: 1

    duckduckbearbear
    Participant
    4 votes
    @duckduckbearbear

    Hello, and sorry for my delayed reply! I want to express my appreciation of your replies, Deepak and Aurora, and I also enjoyed reading your story, Lili. This is indeed a “hard problem” of consciousness, and while I am still not sure whether computers may or may not become “conscious” someday, I am amused to hear that Deepak is friends with Ray Kurzweil even though you two “don’t agree on anything.” 🙂

    I am very interested in this “hard problem” of consciousness and will be reading and learning more. I’m particularly interested in the question of “free will,” which is also central to the computer issue. I was hoping to find more in Chapter 9 about the consciousness of nonhuman living things as well, such as primates, rodents, c.elegans, other model organisms studied today in the physical brain science framework, though could only find examples on humans. From growing up with a dog and being around other animals, I can say they certainly experience “moods” and sometimes behave rather randomly. Do living organisms in bodies have “free will” independent of the field of consciousness we all live in? It seems to be a precondition of being “conscious.”

    I am particularly interested in this question remembering, with deep sadness, that today is the 18th anniversary of the shootings at Columbine high school. I am reminded of how much work needs to be done to increase consciousness on a national and global level, and if everything comes from the same “consciousness,” how do we handle the imbalance that feeds into these tragedies, and how do we hold individuals accountable for their actions in this regard, after determining that they do have “free will”?

    Sincerely,
    duckduckbearbear

    This post has received 1 vote up.
    • #5644 Score: 1

      Aurora Carlson
      Keymaster
      110 votes
      @aurorac

      Dear DDBB, thank you so much for participating in this dialogue. I absolutely love your questions and these are issues that are dear to my heart too. Those “other” beings which so often are ignored or harmed by humans, the entirety of our planet… we need indeed to find ways to heal it all.

      A practical tip to you and everyone is to tag any questions you direct to the authors with @question in order to submit it to the moderation team (more explanations here).

      To offer my take on your question, free will has to do with awareness. The more awareness, the more free will. All beings have only so much free will as they have awareness. Also, I would say… what we are not aware of we are not responsible for, simply because we are not even aware of it. But we might become aware through the effects of our actions, which some call karma. To us, those effects come right out of nowhere, and they do come out of that which is beyond our conscious awareness. Through repetition, we might start to see what was unseen to us before, see beyond our smallness to that which is infinite.

      I guess that step by step, consciousness is becoming aware of itself in all of us, and karma is the way this process works. Through our ignorant actions we become aware of much more. The problem is that it takes (too much!!) time 🙂 On the other hand, time is a construct in timelessness… right? 🙂

      This post has received 1 vote up.
    • #6289 Score: 1

      Deepak Chopra
      Moderator
      60 votes
      @deepakchopra

      Dear @duckduckbearbear , thank you for the second question, my answer is in Readers Ask: Conscious Computers and Free Will Paradox

      Love,
      Deepak

      This post has received 1 vote up.
  • #6354 Score: 1

    Menas Kafatos
    Moderator
    41 votes
    @menask

    Dear ddbb ( @duckduckbearbear ):

    Brain and mind are complementary constructs. They arise from experience in Awareness. One may say that “mind” is more “primary” but even that statement is relative and based on experience (confirmed by modern quantum mechanics which has often been described as a mental theory of interactions with (I would say apparently) external Nature.

    is the physical TV with all its integrated circuitry the “creator” of a program we watch on TV? Certainly not. But without a physical TV, we could not watch any TV program. The physical TV is there to allow us to see TV programs. In that sense, the TV program is primary.

    I realize this is a crude analogy but maybe it will help.

    Your question matters, in my view, to begin to assign some sort of ordering. Realizing that any ordering is itself arbitrary and not Reality itself.

    Best,

    Menas

    This post has received 1 vote up.
  • #5731 Score: 1

    duckduckbearbear
    Participant
    4 votes
    @duckduckbearbear

    Dear Aurora,

    Thank you for your reply, which makes elegant sense to me. “All beings have only so much free will as they have awareness” <—love this. I have often wondered what it is that drives people with antisocial/psychopahtic tendencies to do what they do. If their brains simply process information differently, as neuroscientist James Fallon found, it helps me forgive them more easily, “for they know not what they do.” Still, very sad. And there are others who are freely transmitting “bad karma” into the world via intentionally harmful actions…

    Bringing the question back to whether the brain creates the mind, I found this video interesting. It shows the capability of AI to replace human jobs, the way cars replaced horses. It strikes me that unless we transition away from a work-based economy, and people learn how to reconnect with and live from nature the way wild animals do (rather than he domesticated forms we have become), we risk propagating further inequalities in the system. My brain is telling me that those who build, control, and have access to automation will control the economy of the future, and either not have awareness of or not care for the 45% of the population whose jobs will be replaced. I can only hope that this shift happens with enough foreknowledge that the birth rate among unskilled classes declines (but many of them, perhaps due to lack of womens’ education, will continue to reproduce beyond their means through lack of awareness/biological instinct) and people are supported to live to old age… i count myself lucky as a professional (over-employed physician, now at the bottom of the top 1% in income) but my job is also replaceable, my partner and I notice our biological/familial instinct to have children (both sets of parents want grandkids as none of our siblings are having kids) but I am not sure it’s ethical to bring children into the world when their lives could be so constricted, and I want to do what I can to alleviate suffering. My heart feels heavy with all the suffering I have become conscious of in the world. And because I am aware, I feel responsible.

    What is one to do? Thank you for reading and listening here. It is comforting that there is a medium like this with which one can communicate with other souls who have tasted enlightenment and are centered in love. I have read your comments on other threads and appreciate how you help to hold space for those here. Thank you. Would appreciate any thoughts you have on this, when you have time to share.

    Sincerely,
    ddbb

    [Moderation note: Dear @duckduckbearbear this message was blocked by the spam software because there were several links in the text. Sorry for the inconvenience! Releasing it now!]

    This post has received 1 vote up.
    • #6552 Score: 0

      Aurora Carlson
      Keymaster
      110 votes
      @aurorac

      Hi DDBB ( @duckduckbearbear ), I have just read your post and I want to thank you for your compassion, for caring for all people, for feeling responsible. I understand your point of view so well… but I do have a slightly different one.
      If humanity remains on the same level of consciousness, we do indeed face the problems you mention, and there are no obvious solutions. But as I see it, the actual solution is as so many have expressed- on another level than the one of the problem.

      Today, education means learning the already existing thought systems and structures, and building on them. The more books one reads and the more years one spends combining and regurgitating them, the more knowledgeable one is about how the systems work- which guarantees jobs. Computers are probably already much better than humans at this type of predictable functioning.

      What needs to change is our very understanding of who we are, what the world is and how it is created!

      You see… an enlightened peasant ploughing a rice field is far more capable of handling life than a PhD who has no idea of anything beyond the intellect. The former knows how everything is created and can create consciously and freely, the latter is struggling to push life into as many prefab structures as the intellect has collected. It simply won’t work when the problems have piled up!

      If the physicalist paradigm continues, it is my conviction that humanity won’t make it. If on the other hand humans become aware of the very practical value of spiritual understanding, yes, there will be progress, our societies will change completely, and we will be able to allow AI to do what AI does best, the structural work, while humans can fully give themselves to what humans do best- playing, creating, envisioning, manifesting, evolving, etc.

      I wouldn’t worry about bringing children into the world, as long as those children are not intensely conditioned to forget their true nature. Children are our hope- but only if collective understanding shifts. If you and your wife dedicate yourself to the evolution of your own consciousness, only good can come of it. You will be preparing the way for a new conscious human being, and I don’t know what could be more meaningful.

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