Consciousness

The Lightness of Being by Michael Spirit
an Excerpt from
Grand Universe 

Walking on Water         by Michael Spirit
an Excerpt from Grand Universe 

A Theory and Use of Meaningful Coincidences
(Synchronicities)
by Gibbs A. Williams, Ph.D.

The Difference Between the Living
and the Lifeless
by Syamala Hari


Back to Universal Mind Categories Page
Return to Presentation Page

Join the Grand Universe Webring Now!

Charter Membership ends  7/30/02

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Lightness of Being
by
Michael Spirit 
Primordality.com

                   We do have a nebulous idea of the existence of higher realms, as we sense this idea through the common Locus from which we each extend. When we try to elucidate the idea through the perception and translation of the Animate Interface though, we run into walls of paradoxes that generate detailed “approximations” and “explanations”. If one could …just for a moment, disconnect from one’s senses and perceive “existence as it is”, directly, then an understanding of the true nature of Primary Consciousness …of the Void might instantly come about. 

                    A process to experience existence at the Quantum Level is described below in a conversation that I had with a friend on the Internet. The process is derived from my own personal direct, though surprisingly unexpected experience with the Void.

This is a conversation about achieving Oneness and Radiance

The Lightness of Being

                   It is about a process that anyone can generate within themselves. Although it has been known for thousands of years, I discovered it myself quite by accident while out on my boat …in the uncontrollable element of the sea…


Kalliste: I understand those things ...feeling them intuitively ...explanations ... words are often too confining.

Spirit: That is true - but the process that I found that enabled me to achieve the meditative state is a simple one.

Kalliste: Yes ...but so often the intellect gets in the way.

Spirit: In this case - intellect was the key to attainment.

Kalliste: For you ...I am easily derailed. I do not have the skills you possess.

Spirit: Little skill is required – just a willingness to try. I was alone in my boat, fifteen miles out to sea in five to six foot swells and I was terribly seasick. Instead of leaving the area and getting back to calmer waters, I decided to stay and tough it out. I sat myself down on a chair on my deck and closed my eyes and fought with all my will against the discomfort that I was feeling. Eventually, I felt a form of disconnection from myself, from the seasickness, although I was still aware of it. In this state, I developed a kind of detached lucidity and was able to begin to analyze my condition. I realized that I was balancing against the previous wave – against a memory …that set me up for the present wave to take me by surprise and this was what was causing my seasickness ...a continuous state of unbalance ...not inflicted by the sea upon me, but inflicted by myself – upon myself. When I stopped balancing against myself …against the memory of the previous wave …against a memory, I gained “effortless control” …over my balance and the seasickness stopped. I had entered the Meditative State and within that state, not only was I able to gain mastery over my seasickness, but I saw the process of Time and Primary Consciousness, (the Unified Field), for what it is and saw as well, my own connection to it.

Spirit: Once understood, this is a simple process, not unlike what the Native American Indians do to have a “vision”, in that they subject themselves to discomfort and then mentally focus away from that discomfort. Because of the focus, they disconnect from their senses and enter a Meditative State. I have learned that such “effortless control” is also achievable by staring into a candle flame for a period of time until the Meditative State is reached. There are many other ways to get there, but one half of the key to attainment is to focus to the exclusion of all else upon something that holds your attention. The other half of the key is not to look for the Meditative State, but to just let it happen. When it comes, you will know it with certainty. A feeling will come over you – like a kid, who is having a happy time at play. It seizes you and all at once – you are there.

Kalliste: Yes, I can see that ...effortless control …it is something to aspire to. I am my own worst enemy :)

Spirit: I never realized that this was possible. What I felt is almost indescribable. A feeling of absolute power was generated with absolute happiness - a kind of Radiance and Lightness manifested. I became the boat and the sea …and movement was effortless - a kind of weightlessness accompanied by a sense of naturalness. All physical movement was without effort. My mental state was sharp and filled with happiness.

Kalliste: Ahhh Satori …Nirvana …It is the same thing ...at-one-ment.

Spirit: Yes - that's it.

Kalliste: It is an exciting breakthrough.

Spirit: The trick I think is to know what to stop fighting ...what to stop balancing against. With all of the work that I have done in describing the fundamentals of existence …I couldn’t know …really know …that the bottom line …the true understanding comes from the direct experience with the Void itself ...through the Meditative State, to know that Time and Consciousness are one and the same …and to see our own connection to this, as we each are an undivided part of it. With this understanding comes the realization that all patterns of existence …all “things” – rocks, people, buildings, mountains, oceans, planets, stars …and the Universe itself, are composed of Time/Consciousness in diversified compoundment/experience of itself ...and that bordered existence …the illusioned separations that we perceive between such “things” are merely the interpretations by ourselves as “localized” Consciousness …(as “localized time”), – enlivened to self-awareness by the digitization of experiential encounter …perceiving through our own self created and extended senses of our animate forms. We perceive “things” as separate because we perceive from a localized perspective.

Kalliste: Yes ...I am in the process of discovering “what to stop fighting” within myself.

Spirit: While in the Meditative State, one sees themselves from the perimeter of their being to the center of their being, as one is disconnected from the animate senses and experiences the Void directly. Within the Meditative State, the “Way”, is to let a negativity, an uncomfortable memory from your past, perhaps from your childhood, emerge in your mind and then to objectify it into a solid ball. You will see from the perimeter of your being, the negativity emerge from the center of your being – as if from a well at the center. The process of objectification is a form of forgiveness in that the negativity will not objectify unless forgiven …(But forgiveness is easy and natural when in the meditative state. In fact, whenever we forgive, we naturally enter into some degree of meditation). When it is made “solid”, mentally throw it away. The next negativity will then emerge. It will float to the top of the well, as it was obscured by the previous one. Getting rid of each negativity allows the next to emerge naturally. Keep going through this process of “Objectification” and “Negativity Deconstruction” until the Radiant State of Being occurs.

Kalliste: I get deluged with whys, what-ifs and should-haves.

Spirit: In the Meditative State, there are no “whys, what-ifs and should-haves”. These notions are part of the limited decision making process of Localized perception through an animate Interface. In meditation, the Animate Interface is bypassed and the decision making process is greatly enhanced, but rarely required – as most of what you will do in the meditative state will be by auto-thought. Just focus on “materializing” the negative memory as an object. No need to explore it. Just see it, objectify it, look at it, forgive it …and throw it away. This process is a natural form of forgiveness – at the Quantum level – at the baseline perception by Localized Primary Consciousness of itself. I will try next time using handfuls of sand - the imagery is the key.

Kalliste: Yes ...I will keep trying it. Ahh …sand …I like that. Slipping through my fingers ...absolving ...dissolving…

Spirit: Good thoughts. The key is to dismantle the negativity - as that is your imbalance.

Kalliste: Yes ...and right now, I am filled with it... change always dredges up the old tapes ...the old patterns of behavior and the old belief systems that keep us in the same old spaces ...imbalance - yes indeed.

Spirit: Imbalance requires continuous effort to stay balanced. The negativity creates the imbalance. Once balance is achieved. The negativity seems inconsequential. The Deconstruction Process described above allows the unveiling and dissolving of one negativity after the next.

Kalliste: Yes I see ...but sometimes we hold on to negative patterns just because they are so damn familiar ...and that is what I am sorting through now …it can be insidious.

Spirit: The negativity is Inertial …at the baseline of time …at zero “movement”, in that it stays where it is until an effort is made to remove it. You are experiencing the Inertia of the negativity in that it stays with you until you make the effort that I have described – the deconstruction of it by objectifying it and throwing it away. This is easily accomplished within the Meditative State.

Kalliste: But what if you don't perceive something as negative, but it is a major block to the knowingness?

Spirit: Please explain further - give an example? 

Kalliste: What if the illusion that surrounds a pattern is so strong that you don't perceive it as a pattern at all ...like say …for instance ...fears of sustainability ...even though you know the truth of it?

Spirit: Are you speaking about fear of death? 

Kalliste: It is something that can be rationalized as reality based ...not necessarily a negative ...no, not fear of death, but fear of not having enough money to pay bills ...very mundane ...but it is a pattern that is negative in that it accepts the premise that one is separate after all …and that one is in control of these things from without ...even though we are all sustained from within. It is a pattern of negativity ...like when you say, “I need”, you are really saying “I don't have” ...but the “I need” can be rationalized as “taking care of business”, see? It is negative but not readily perceived as such. How do you objectify that?

Spirit: Ok - I understand. The way is not to throw away a given situation – that you cannot do. The way is to objectify the negative feeling about that situation and throw away that negative feeling. When you deconstruct enough of your negativity’s, the feeling of radiance will displace your need to brace yourself against illusion. The need to sustain yourself will still be there, but your frame of mind will be different and you will see things differently. That which you perceive as need pulling on you, will be replaced with a feeling of confidence and you will be able to better “take care of business” without the imbalance of the illusion of negativity dragging you down. Even if you cannot imagine how this is possible, once you enter the Meditative State and work through the Deconstruction Process - you will then come to a clear understanding.

Kalliste: Ahhh …I see that now.

Spirit: As soon as you take a position against the unknown - you are positioning against the illusion of “what might be”. This causes unbalance. I was seasick on my boat – fifteen miles out in rough seas and during this, I entered a natural Meditative State because I was unable to control my situation. I was in an uncontrollable element. The uncontrollable rocking of the sea helped to create the Meditative State. I entered the Deconstruction Process automatically - remembering a situation in my past that was uncomfortable for me. I took the negative feeling and objectified it - mentally imaged it into a solid ball and then mentally threw it away. The next emerged and I repeated the process. With each repetition, I felt better. The last negativity was a realization that I was pitting myself against the memory of the previous wave. This allowed the next wave – the current wave - to catch me by surprise - keeping me continually off balance. Through this realization, I took the negativity that I was feeling about my current situation, my lack of control over the sea …and objectified it and threw it away. This was the same as forgiving the last wave. When I did this, the next wave did not take me by surprise because I put no effort against what might occur. In doing this, I became at-one with it …one with the boat …one with the sea …perfectly and effortlessly balanced …and the seasickness left me completely. Just do it without expectation. Be unconditional - and therefore effortless.

Kalliste: Unconditional ...that is a keyword. No expectations ...even when you are objectifying? The negativity I mean.

Spirit: That is correct. No expectations, allow the radiance to manifest. You will learn this as you experience it.Let go of the “whys, what ifs and should haves”.

Kalliste: Wow... remain in the… IS…

Spirit: You can objectify them - the “whys, what ifs and should haves”, and let them go - throw them away.

Kalliste: Very, very exciting stuff.

Spirit: May I send this conversation to others?

Kalliste: Of course …but I feel like I am pretty far behind in many ways, like I am always just on the edge of knowing that I know...

Spirit: Not at all. We are all in the same “boat” :) The feeling of “knowing that you know”, but not being able to put your finger on “what it is” that you know, comes from your direct connection to the Void, your sense of being connected to all knowledge, but since this is perceived through your animate senses, your vision of knowledge is limited through the sequentiality of your perception of time and events and bordered “things”. The sensory perception through the Animate Interface is an illusion that interrupts your direct view of the Void …of all of knowledge. This is why we “know that we know”. Spirit: The very concept of “knowing that we know” speaks of interrupted perception. Once the Meditative State is achieved, the senses are bypassed and all knowledge is directly available to you, directly a part of you – you just know …instantly …in the moment, as the Void is not other than the Totality of knowledge …as it is the virtual compoundment of experience of the Unified Field of Primary consciousness …of which we are each an undivided part. Within the Meditative State, time is not sequential – it manifests as it truly is …instantaneously, as the Unified Tensor Field of Primary Consciousness in multiplistic comprehension of itself. We are in a constant state of anticipation because of our focus through the Animate Interface. We approximate existence because of our interruption of perception through our animate senses. We interpret sequentially because of this interruption, which results in our anticipation of the next moment ...of the next thing, event, or situation, which gives rise to a possible illusion of negativity or an illusion'd over-expectation of positivity. In either perception, the illusion invariably leads to disappointment. Giving up the anticipation generates a state of being as Oneness – Radiance, Happiness - and comprehensive understanding.

Kalliste: Yes …but doesn't anticipation also attract that which enlightens?

Spirit: Anticipation is the fundamental process that eventually brings one to the state of deconstruction, but this is because we start the process of entering the Meditative State from the perception of the Void through the Animate Interface. Once the Meditative State is entered however, the Animate Interface is bypassed and anticipation disappears. When the process of deconstruction is generated and completed - a wave collapse to the state of At-oneness …or “Radiance” occurs. After Radiance - the ocean felt like a natural state - a natural environment.

Kalliste: Ahh yes ...living in the Now …as One ...you are one with the ocean. It is an especially good metaphor ...“I am a bubble ...make me the Sea” becoming the Sea ...At-One with all. The ecstasy is the natural state of us I think.

Spirit: You understand it intellectually however …but to feel it - to be it, requires the Deconstruction Process. It is important to note that in this instance, the Meditative State was brought on by the uncontrollable motion of the sea. That state was similar to lucid dreaming, except it was lucid “being awake”, a form of hypnosis. I suspect that the motion of any vehicle that one does not have control over may be capable of initiating such a state. I mention this because the Meditative State is necessary to the Deconstruction Process.

Kalliste: Yes ...I know ...I will do it - thank you so much.

Spirit: We together today have constructed a wonderful concept through our discussion - that will help many. Thank you.

Kalliste: Thank you ...it is a pleasure speaking with you ...you have given me a wonderful key.

Kalliste: Have a delicious day!

Spirit: Pleasure talking to you
____________________________

                 It should be noted that fasting for 24 hrs or more without the intake of drugs, nicotine, caffeine, alcohol or mind-altering medications should occur before attempting to enter the Meditative State. Drinking water during this period is permissible. The Meditative State is a natural condition and should not be altered in any way so that the full benefits of this experience may be gained.

Back to Consciousness Table of Contents

Back to Universal Mind Categories Page

Back to Opening Presentation Page

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Walking on Water
by Michael Spirit 
Primordality.com

             We interpret Time-Space and illusion it into “time” and “space”, both illusions of the animate form. If we are making a “picture” within our minds and projecting this image “out there”, can we not reinterpret “time” and “space” and project a different “image”? If enlivened inertia affects the gravimetrics of animate matter in a unique way by its perception of Time-Space, isn’t it then also possible to affect “time and space, velocity, direction and of course energy and materiality” through our synthesized perception? The limitations that we experience are set by our interfacial interpretations of the processes of Primary Consciousness that we encounter …that we extend from. If we reinterpret those processes in a way that is more direct than through an Animate Interface, we can harness them in ways that are only imaginable in our dreams.

              Have you ever had a “flying dream” where your only limitation was your own fear? If you were fearful, you were unable to control your direction or velocity and then your fear compounded upon itself and you fell …but if you were fearless …you could fly - joyfully, change direction and velocity …without the benefit of friction. Of course, this is only a dream, right? …but why is it that everyone has had “flying” dreams, whether falling, or joyfully flying? The reason why is because we are always “flying” within the limitations of our own perceptions. Can we experience “flying” while awake? Can we rise or change direction through shear will within our perception of our “Classical world”? It can be done – joyfully …but it must be done fearlessly …and there is a process of learning what to do when your feet leave the ground …to stay in frictionless, effortless control. 

The following is a small but significant example of a way to bring 
this Meditative State into the Classical world 

This is another communication from myself to a dear friend on the Internet;

Dear Steve,

                 Recently I sent you an email regarding an experience that I had on my boat, regarding the “Motion of the Tao”. I have pursued this experiment and have had varying degrees of success. As many occurrences that seem unusual to us can be attributed to luck or coincidence through our classical vision, we find it difficult to accept that the unusual, simultaneous, or non-classical events that we sometimes unwittingly evoke are derived from the effects of our undivided interaction through a greater realm, through our reciprocity with the Void. Now, all of this can be construed as coincidence, luck and so on, but to tie this together into something believable, let me tell you about one more occurrence…

                 Once again, I was on my boat, 4 miles offshore in heavy seas. The wave heights were at between 5 to 7 feet and my boat was achieving 30-degree angles to the horizon. As I had mentioned earlier within this writing, I went into deep meditation due to the distress of being in rough seas and through that meditation, I learned how to deal with the effects of such “seasickness”. Rough seas therefore, no longer automatically drive me into a state of meditation. But I learned about effortless balance during this prior experience and I decided this time to try something new.

                  This time I did not try to balance as a good seaman should, with feet apart, using my legs and knees to counter balance the rocking motion of the boat. (When one has legs apart on a rocking boat, one makes “two point contact” with the boat and is subject to all of the forces that the sea transmits to the boat). Rather I stood on the deck of my boat, feet together, up on my toes, arms outstretched to my left and right, eyes closed …and allowed the boat to pivot under me while I stood perfectly still. (If one puts feet together on a rocking boat, one makes “one point contact” and is less subject to the forces of the sea). The way that I did this was to align my perception with a lateral motion of the Tao and allow myself to be held there – by thought! In doing this, the boat rocked and rolled under me, but I did not move. At one point, the boat fell into a trough between the waves and dropped out from under me, and I stood there for a moment …in thin air, and then I opened my eyes. When my feet gently touched the deck once again I was in a sublime state of meditation and although the sea was violently tossing about and the motion of my boat was translating those forces, I saw a calmness to it all because I had achieved a perceptual oneness with the greater extensity from which the ocean, my boat and I extend.

                  I was fixed to a lateral plane of the motion of the Tao and in having achieved this lateral control, I altered the forces affecting my vertical position, as my rate of fall was a bit slower than that of my boat. The boat was resting on the water and the water was resting on the planet. When the boat dropped away, the world dropped away, and I was fixed to Be-ing …in space. This “space” is a reinterpretation of “time” through the mind. Once time is reinterpreted, gravity is thereby altered! I have repeated this experiment several times with each time having a degree of success. The greatest success comes when I do not eat the night before and I get a good night’s sleep so that I am fresh and fully awake the following day. I tell you about this because anyone can do this, as all this takes is a little effort, some patience, and a little courage to try this in rough seas. I believe that this can be accomplished on land, but more has to be learned and I will eventually intuit what to align with, anytime, anywhere, as I continue to advance my knowledge. There is a theory that spinning objects fall slower than non-spinning objects. Our classical perception of “spin” is derived from our intuitive knowledge of the omnidirectional motion of Tao. As brought out earlier within this writing, all “straight” lines are actually circles viewed edge on. Therefore, all “motion” through “spatial” coordinates is curved. Curved motion is “spin”. The omnidirectional motion of “Tao” is thus curved and when one achieves perception of this motion especially through a physical act, reciprocal effects unfold. There is no coincidence or luck involved here. This is an accomplishment of volition that manifests the Unity of the Void directly into the classical world.

                 The self-experiential “motion”/encounter by Primary Consciousness of itself is what we ourselves experience as our ambient being, our own ambient “motion” whether we are in “motion” or at relative rest. Our dynamic being however is our perceptiveness, our recomprehension of ourselves and of our greater extensity, which we interpret as our “environment”. The inertial processes that make up the fabric of the Souls of animate matter therefore extend from the whole of the universal inertial fabric, from the common Soul of our Universal Span and of the Grand Universe. We therefore are both the connected whole of ambient Primary Consciousness as our foundation …and of dynamic localized consciousnesses, as extensions of that foundation.

Back to Consciousness Table of Contents

Back to Universal Mind Categories Page

Back to Opening Presentation Page

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Difference between the Living and the Lifeless
Syamala Hari

Abstract

          In this article, we describe some aspects of intelligent and conscious behaviors from our daily experience that suggest a fundamental difference in the behaviors of living beings and lifeless systems. Three such aspects are discussed: 1) Information in a living brain is different from any of its Representations used for its communication. 2) There cannot be self-awareness in lifeless matter, not even in intelligent computers. 3) Inductive Reasoning takes place in human brains but not in computers and the causality associated with inductive reasoning is different from the causality described in the well-known causality principle.


Introduction

          Explaining how human beings exhibit consciousness is a major topic of research today across a broad spectrum of academic fields. There are experts in physical, biological, computational, and social sciences, who are all interested in finding out what constitutes consciousness in human beings, intelligence in living beings, how the brain works, what is the fundamental difference, if at all there is any, between living and lifeless beings in nature, and so on. One school of thought may be called scientific materialism; it believes that mental states are identical with brain states and that our thoughts and feelings, and our sense of self are all generated by electrochemical activity in the brain. Today's computers, which think like human beings if not better, and do superhuman tasks, reinforce this belief. On the other hand, others like Sir John Eccles argue that there is a mental world in addition to the material world, and that our mind or self acts on the brain at the quantum level, by increasing the probability of the firing of selected neurons (Eccles, 1994; Giroldini, 1991). He argues that the mind is not only nonphysical but absolutely nonmaterial. Quantum physicists think that Quantum Physics with its embedded philosophical discussions to reconcile indeterminism and causality is the appropriate scientific discipline to explain mind and free will. 

          In this article, we describe some aspects of intelligent and conscious behaviors from our daily experience that suggest a fundamental difference in the behaviors of living beings and lifeless systems. 

          * One observation is that whenever we refer to "information" in physical sciences, it consists of some form of material energy or matter and is merely a "representation" of some "real" information stored in a living brain. The "meaning" exists only in the brain and not in any representation. 

          * The other observation is that intelligent behaviors seem to be associated with a type of causality different from that of lifeless material systems. Living beings are capable of both deductive and inductive reasoning where as a lifeless computer, for example, implements only deductive reasoning even when it is simulating inductive reasoning because it obeys the principle that a cause must precede its effect. (Today's scientists including Quantum Physicists, despite disagreements about causality, non-locality, and indeterminism, all accept that lifeless material systems all obey the principle of causality, namely that a cause or causes precede its or their effect.)

          Information is different from any of its Representations. As is well known, many computer design techniques are based on various brain models. One common characteristic of a computer and a living brain is that information is stored both. We know how it is stored in a computer. The machine has a bunch of memory cells, each of which can exist in either of two states denoted by "0" and "1". Writing information is the process of driving these cells into the "0" and "1" states as dictated by the operator punching the keys. Reading information is sensing these cells to know in which states they are. What information is represented by bytes of '0's and '1's is decided by the programmer and not by the computer. So, the machine carries only a representation of some information but does not really know or understand the information. Similarly, seeing an object, hearing a sound, etc. also create in the brain's memory, representations in the form of bonds of nerve cells but in addition, there is an experience of seeing, hearing, knowing etc. in the brain. So, in the brain, there is "real" information, not merely a representation.

Information

          A representation of information is different from the information itself. The same meaning may be conveyed by different words in different languages. Sometimes a language is not even used to communicate information. For example, babies cry when they are hungry. A right signal flashing on the front and back of a car is an indication to others that it is about to make a right turn. Animals also convey some feelings by making sounds and movement of their bodies. Thus information can be conveyed in many ways but the communication uses some form of representation. Without a representation information cannot be read, written, told, heard, and so on. Examples of representations used for communication of information are words, sounds, electrical signals, etc. Such representations are all mappings of pieces of information to matter or material energy. A language is a mapping of information to words that become sound energy when uttered, particles of matter when written on a paper, and electrical signals when transmitted over a telephone line. Yet information itself is different from the language or the energy signals used for its communication just like water is different from its container without which it cannot be carried from place to place.

Awareness and Self Awareness

          People who use personal computers (these days, more people use them than not) frequently use expressions like "the computer knows", "it does not understand", "it thinks", etc. In fact, we can precisely define what we mean when we say " the computer knows the object". 

          Definition (D): A computer knows an object (a data item or a program instruction), when a representation of that object (as bytes of "0"s and "1"s, in other words, as a bunch of memory cells), exists in its memory. 

          Once such a representation is entered into a computer's memory, it can perform any number of operations with that representation. The computer can compare the object with other objects also known to it similarly. It can add, subtract, compute functions of it, draw a picture of it, and so on. The computer can do almost anything that a person can do with that object and behave as though it "knows" the object. In fact, computers do so many miraculous things that we often wonder whether they are more intelligent than us human beings. Even a simple hand calculator does all arithmetic operations without errors and much faster than any well known mathematical genius! But, does a computer "really know" the object it is playing with? Of course not. A paper on which a few sentences are written, does not know the meaning of these sentences. A person uttering a word knows its meaning but the sound does not. Similarly, the computer does not know the meaning of the contents of its memory although it exhibits many intelligent behaviors using those contents. On the other hand, we, human beings know what we are saying and what we are doing. Note that the above definition of knowing applies to a human brain as well, with the difference that the representation used for storing information into the brain is still under investigation. Thus, lifeless physical systems some how do not "really know" what they are doing where as we humans do.

          Let us take a further look the previous sentence asserting that lifeless systems do not know what they do where as people know what they do. If one tries to simulate this self-awareness in a computer making use of the definition D above, then one has to write a program which can write into the computer, the following infinitely many representations of the object and of the sentences: "I know the object", "I know that I know the object", "I know that I know the object", and so on. A computer can never execute such an infinite loop of instructions. It can execute a finite number of these writings but then we do know that it still does not know what it is doing. So, in any case, a computer can never know what it is doing and it is our experience that people do know what they are doing.


Inductive Reasoning and Causality

Inductive Reasoning:

          Let A and B be two statements such that B is true whenever A is true. Then we say that A implies B or B follows from A and write A*B. Deriving a new statement B whose validity solely depends upon the validity of one or more statements, say set A, by a chain of implications, is called deduction. If B is true whenever all the statements in A are true, then we again write A*B. On the other hand, given a statement B, to figure out a set of statements, which will imply B is one form of induction. Artificial Intelligence experts consider any type of inductive reasoning as an "intelligent" behavior. For example, consider the statement "I do not get wet in the rain if I use an umbrella". Here, the statement B = "I do not get wet" is deduced from a set A containing the pair of statements: "It rains" and "I use an umbrella". To figure out what I must do in order not to get wet if it rains is induction. All living beings and human beings in particular, do inductive reasoning almost always because they choose to do whatever they do, in order to achieve a goal. A person takes a plane or a train in order to go to a place other than where he/she is at present. A cat jumps on a mouse in order to kill it. Note that jumping happens now and kills the mouse later but the cat has figured out that it should jump on the mouse first and it does just that.

Causality: 

          There may be slight variations of statement of this principle but they all agree that if a set of events A causes an event B then A cannot occur later than B. In our umbrella example, I first open my umbrella and therefore I am dry when it is raining. (Incidentally, this is also an irreversible causality relation because my staying dry does not cause my umbrella to open!). In the case of inductive reasoning, when one tries to figure out a set A of events that will lead to B, not only A is a cause for B but A also depends upon B. For example, a child may leave home without an umbrella when it is already raining outside because it wants to play in the rain. Whether to take the umbrella or not depends upon whether one wants to stay dry or get wet. Thus deductive and inductive reasoning involve different types of causality and both types are present in our thinking. 

Problem Solving, Search, Backtracking, and Backward Chaining: 

          Many Artificial Intelligence programs simulate inductive reasoning because, they do solve problems, learn new rules, create new theories, and so on. However, when one takes a close look at how the program actually executes, one finds that only deductive reasoning takes place inside the computer but not inductive reasoning. Here are some examples.

          Suppose we want to find a path from the starting city S to the goal city G through a network of cities. To solve this problem, a program called depth-first-search would start from S, visit the first city (say alphabetically first) that can be reached from S, say A, then go to the first city that can be reached from A and so on. When it reaches a dead end say B, it backtracks to a previously visited city to find an alternate route. In a particular example, the path traced by the program within the computer can be S-A-B-A-C-G to reach the destination G although the output it will show is S-A-C-G. Is this how we travel (unless all flights are suddenly cancelled from B)? Normally, we do not keep on trying all wrong places before we get to the right place. All the necessary thinking and inductive reasoning goes on in the brain. Our AI programs are of course, make better search than a mere depth-first. They use clever guesses called heuristics so as to choose the right path quickly but they still try one path after another like a person driving a car in an unfamiliar place. This is because they can only go one way that is the deductive way. Programs do another type of search called goal-driven search also called backward chaining. Such a program starts right in the goal city when our real problem is how to get there. A planning program, which uses problem reduction approach, for example, an aircraft-designing program does a similar absurd job. It starts with a completed aircraft and breaks it into parts while the engineers are trying hard to build each part and assemble them together. Chess playing by a computer is another example that shows how inductive reasoning is simulated in a computer. The machine is given a measure of the advantage of each possible move in each board position ahead of time. It is also told that the opponent's move will be to minimize its score in any current position. With this background, before it finally shows its move on the screen, the program takes every possible move from the current board position and calculates the resulting score for each such move; then it finds which move gave it the best score and displays it to the opponent. This is called look-ahead. The program plays better and better, as the look-ahead covers not just one future move but more and more future moves.

          The point of all these examples is that only a deductive reasoning takes place in a computer even when it is simulating inductive reasoning. In general terms, the deduction of a proposition B from a set A of is carried out in a computer as follows: The sequence of steps required to deduce an event B from a set of events A is represented as a program and stored in the computer. The proposition that "A is true" is entered into the computer to put it in the initial state required to execute the program. The computer then goes through a process according to the stored program and ends in the final state "B is true". Each event in this process is the result of a past or past events. The computer implements only deduction because it obeys the causality principle. The computer enters a state because of what it has gone through but not because it wants to get into a future state. On the other hand, human beings almost always do whatever they do because they want to be somewhere or get something or be somebody, etc. The "want" or desire is looking into a future state. This desire is the source of inductive reasoning which as pointed out earlier involves a different type of causality than the causality we know in physical sciences.

Back to Consciousness Table of Contents

Back to Universal Mind Categories Page

Back to Opening Presentation Page

Join the Grand Universe Webring   Go to Links and WebRings