Some thoughts and questions about awareness and PCT

[Blake Ashley (2015, 10/14, at 8:32 Arizona Time)]

Greetings All,

I would like to articulate my understanding of what PCT has to say about awareness, with perhaps some extensions of my own, and a bit about how this relates to the practice of mindfulness. This is to some extent an oblique response to Bruce Nevin's kind welcome to me [20150917:17:10 PT].

As I understand it, awareness is not needed for any control loop to function. However, awareness can move freely among them, shining selectively on one, several or perhaps all of them. This awareness can be moved intentionally or drawn by a disturbance to perception.

When awareness is focused on one particular set of control loops and ignoring others, we would be conscious of the former and unconscious of the later.

Bill postulated that awareness is needed for the reorganization function to operate.

The foregoing is my understanding of what PCT says about awareness. Now please permit me to suggest a couple possible extensions.

In addition to the parts of the control system upon which the light of awareness is presently shining ( the conscious), and the other parts of the hierarchy being ignored by the light of awareness but which COULD be illuminated by awareness (the unconscious), there are parts of the control system that seem to be beyond the reach of awareness. Let's call this the subconscious. Feel free to correct my terminology if I am treading an old trail.

One example of a part of the control system that is not accessible to direct awareness is memory. The vast storehouse of memories that feed imagination and dreaming, and provide reference perceptions, seems to be off limits to direct awareness. Not having direct access to "the stacks", it seems that we must ask the special collections librarian to fetch the memories for us. And, as I approach my 60th birthday, it is painfully obvious to me that the librarian will take their sweet time about it. Sometimes the result is instantaneous. Sometimes the result never arrives. At other times, the librarian shows up out of the blue twenty minutes after I made the request and plops the memory in my lap. None of this retrieval process seems to be accessible to direct awareness, so I relegate it to the subconscious.

Another example of a part of the control system that is not accessible to awareness is the "settings" of the feedback loop. The sensitivity of a given loop to a discrepancy between an actual perception and a reference perception is an important variable in the function of the control loop but does not seem to be directly accessed by awareness. I cannot, as I sit here at my desk, bring awareness to just how sensitive I am to the pain of a dental drill, although I can send for some associated memories and might, if I dwell on them, elicit an analogous physiological response. Another important variable I cannot bring into direct awareness is the strength of the impetus to act to correct a given error signal (is there a correct technical term for this "strength of response" setting?), although I can sense the level of urgency as a body sensation when a particular error signal is ringing.

As I understand it, both the sensitivity to deviation from the reference perception and the strength of response to an error signal are parameters subject to reorganization. Yet, they do not appear to be subject to direct awareness. So the awareness needed for reorganization need not encompass the actual parameter subject to reorganization.

One reason this is important when trying to understand mindfulness in PCT terms is the almost universal experience of mindfulness practitioners who, after a few months of practice, will claim that events that used to irritate them now have no effect. For example, the neighbor dogs barking used to cause irritation, but it no longer does. In PCT terms, this could mean one of several things: the sensitivity setting has been turned down, the strength of response to the error signal has been turned down, or the reference perception has been changed to allow for the change in perception created by the environmental disturbance.

This effect seems to be unconscious or subconscious, since the practitioner does not typically notice the change until after it has happened. It seems to creep up on them slowly and then one day the change just pop into awareness.

And the effect seems to be somewhat general. For example, the practitioner not only notices that the barking dog does not generate irritation, but neither does the train delay on the way to work, or the formerly annoying in-law, and so on. This seems to argue against a change in reference perception, since that would be specific, and instead argues for a change in a "master" setting for sensitivity or strength of response to error signal. This will be of particular importance for other aspects of the mindfulness.

Thanks for listening to some musings. This is really just the tip of an iceberg I have only begun to explore. I am very excited about the possibility of using PCT to explain mindfulness.

Blake

Hi Blake, I think this is great. You could add intrinsic systems to those outside awareness too. However, I don’t seem to see in your accounr the importance of managing conflict between control systems as a key process going on in mindfulness, and the importance of going up levels in the perceptual hierarchy in awareness through mindfulness. These seem critical to me…
Warren

···

On Wed, Oct 14, 2015 at 4:42 PM, Blake Ashley Blake.Ashley@tucsonaz.gov wrote:

[Blake Ashley (2015, 10/14, at 8:32 Arizona Time)]

Greetings All,

I would like to articulate my understanding of what PCT has to say about awareness, with perhaps some extensions of my own, and a bit about how this relates to the practice of mindfulness. This is to some extent an oblique response to Bruce Nevin’s kind welcome to me [20150917:17:10 PT].

As I understand it, awareness is not needed for any control loop to function. However, awareness can move freely among them, shining selectively on one, several or perhaps all of them. This awareness can be moved intentionally or drawn by a disturbance to perception.

When awareness is focused on one particular set of control loops and ignoring others, we would be conscious of the former and unconscious of the later.

Bill postulated that awareness is needed for the reorganization function to operate.

The foregoing is my understanding of what PCT says about awareness. Now please permit me to suggest a couple possible extensions.

In addition to the parts of the control system upon which the light of awareness is presently shining ( the conscious), and the other parts of the hierarchy being ignored by the light of awareness but which COULD be illuminated by awareness (the unconscious), there are parts of the control system that seem to be beyond the reach of awareness. Let’s call this the subconscious. Feel free to correct my terminology if I am treading an old trail.

One example of a part of the control system that is not accessible to direct awareness is memory. The vast storehouse of memories that feed imagination and dreaming, and provide reference perceptions, seems to be off limits to direct awareness. Not having direct access to “the stacks”, it seems that we must ask the special collections librarian to fetch the memories for us. And, as I approach my 60th birthday, it is painfully obvious to me that the librarian will take their sweet time about it. Sometimes the result is instantaneous. Sometimes the result never arrives. At other times, the librarian shows up out of the blue twenty minutes after I made the request and plops the memory in my lap. None of this retrieval process seems to be accessible to direct awareness, so I relegate it to the subconscious.

Another example of a part of the control system that is not accessible to awareness is the “settings” of the feedback loop. The sensitivity of a given loop to a discrepancy between an actual perception and a reference perception is an important variable in the function of the control loop but does not seem to be directly accessed by awareness. I cannot, as I sit here at my desk, bring awareness to just how sensitive I am to the pain of a dental drill, although I can send for some associated memories and might, if I dwell on them, elicit an analogous physiological response. Another important variable I cannot bring into direct awareness is the strength of the impetus to act to correct a given error signal (is there a correct technical term for this “strength of response” setting?), although I can sense the level of urgency as a body sensation when a particular error signal is ringing.

As I understand it, both the sensitivity to deviation from the reference perception and the strength of response to an error signal are parameters subject to reorganization. Yet, they do not appear to be subject to direct awareness. So the awareness needed for reorganization need not encompass the actual parameter subject to reorganization.

One reason this is important when trying to understand mindfulness in PCT terms is the almost universal experience of mindfulness practitioners who, after a few months of practice, will claim that events that used to irritate them now have no effect. For example, the neighbor dogs barking used to cause irritation, but it no longer does. In PCT terms, this could mean one of several things: the sensitivity setting has been turned down, the strength of response to the error signal has been turned down, or the reference perception has been changed to allow for the change in perception created by the environmental disturbance.

This effect seems to be unconscious or subconscious, since the practitioner does not typically notice the change until after it has happened. It seems to creep up on them slowly and then one day the change just pop into awareness.

And the effect seems to be somewhat general. For example, the practitioner not only notices that the barking dog does not generate irritation, but neither does the train delay on the way to work, or the formerly annoying in-law, and so on. This seems to argue against a change in reference perception, since that would be specific, and instead argues for a change in a “master” setting for sensitivity or strength of response to error signal. This will be of particular importance for other aspects of the mindfulness.

Thanks for listening to some musings. This is really just the tip of an iceberg I have only begun to explore. I am very excited about the possibility of using PCT to explain mindfulness.

Blake

Dr Warren Mansell
Reader in Clinical Psychology
School of Psychological Sciences
2nd Floor Zochonis Building
University of Manchester
Oxford Road
Manchester M13 9PL
Email: warren.mansell@manchester.ac.uk

Tel: +44 (0) 161 275 8589

Website: http://www.psych-sci.manchester.ac.uk/staff/131406

Advanced notice of a new transdiagnostic therapy manual, authored by Carey, Mansell & Tai - Principles-Based Counselling and Psychotherapy: A Method of Levels Approach

Available Now

Check www.pctweb.org for further information on Perceptual Control Theory

[Blake Ashley (2015/10/14 at 9:45 Arizona time)]

WM:
I don't seem to see in your account the importance of managing conflict between control systems as a key process going on in mindfulness, and the importance of going up levels in the perceptual hierarchy in awareness through mindfulness. These seem critical to me....
Warren

BA: Thanks, Warren. One of the alternative appellations (or translations) for mindfulness is "insight meditation" because there is a reported tendency for the practitioner to experience insights into the way in which the perception of self and world arises. That could easily be understood as reports of "up a level" resolutions of conflicts. Perhaps the increased power of concentration and the companion mindfulness skill of increased clarity of perception makes the up-a-level insights easier to come by?

···

On Wed, Oct 14, 2015 at 4:42 PM, Blake Ashley <Blake.Ashley@tucsonaz.gov> wrote:

[Blake Ashley (2015, 10/14, at 8:32 Arizona Time)]

Greetings All,

I would like to articulate my understanding of what PCT has to say about
awareness, with perhaps some extensions of my own, and a bit about how this
relates to the practice of mindfulness. This is to some extent an oblique
response to Bruce Nevin's kind welcome to me [20150917:17:10 PT].

As I understand it, awareness is not needed for any control loop to
function. However, awareness can move freely among them, shining
selectively on one, several or perhaps all of them. This awareness can be
moved intentionally or drawn by a disturbance to perception.

When awareness is focused on one particular set of control loops and
ignoring others, we would be conscious of the former and unconscious of the
later.

Bill postulated that awareness is needed for the reorganization function
to operate.

The foregoing is my understanding of what PCT says about awareness. Now
please permit me to suggest a couple possible extensions.

In addition to the parts of the control system upon which the light of
awareness is presently shining ( the conscious), and the other parts of the
hierarchy being ignored by the light of awareness but which COULD be
illuminated by awareness (the unconscious), there are parts of the control
system that seem to be beyond the reach of awareness. Let's call this the
subconscious. Feel free to correct my terminology if I am treading an old
trail.

One example of a part of the control system that is not accessible to
direct awareness is memory. The vast storehouse of memories that feed
imagination and dreaming, and provide reference perceptions, seems to be
off limits to direct awareness. Not having direct access to "the stacks",
it seems that we must ask the special collections librarian to fetch the
memories for us. And, as I approach my 60th birthday, it is painfully
obvious to me that the librarian will take their sweet time about it.
Sometimes the result is instantaneous. Sometimes the result never
arrives. At other times, the librarian shows up out of the blue twenty
minutes after I made the request and plops the memory in my lap. None of
this retrieval process seems to be accessible to direct awareness, so I
relegate it to the subconscious.

Another example of a part of the control system that is not accessible to
awareness is the "settings" of the feedback loop. The sensitivity of a
given loop to a discrepancy between an actual perception and a reference
perception is an important variable in the function of the control loop but
does not seem to be directly accessed by awareness. I cannot, as I sit
here at my desk, bring awareness to just how sensitive I am to the pain of
a dental drill, although I can send for some associated memories and might,
if I dwell on them, elicit an analogous physiological response. Another
important variable I cannot bring into direct awareness is the strength of
the impetus to act to correct a given error signal (is there a correct
technical term for this "strength of response" setting?), although I can
sense the level of urgency as a body sensation when a particular error
signal is ringing.

As I understand it, both the sensitivity to deviation from the reference
perception and the strength of response to an error signal are parameters
subject to reorganization. Yet, they do not appear to be subject to direct
awareness. So the awareness needed for reorganization need not encompass
the actual parameter subject to reorganization.

One reason this is important when trying to understand mindfulness in PCT
terms is the almost universal experience of mindfulness practitioners who,
after a few months of practice, will claim that events that used to
irritate them now have no effect. For example, the neighbor dogs barking
used to cause irritation, but it no longer does. In PCT terms, this could
mean one of several things: the sensitivity setting has been turned down,
the strength of response to the error signal has been turned down, or the
reference perception has been changed to allow for the change in perception
created by the environmental disturbance.

This effect seems to be unconscious or subconscious, since the
practitioner does not typically notice the change until after it has
happened. It seems to creep up on them slowly and then one day the change
just pop into awareness.

And the effect seems to be somewhat general. For example, the
practitioner not only notices that the barking dog does not generate
irritation, but neither does the train delay on the way to work, or the
formerly annoying in-law, and so on. This seems to argue against a change
in reference perception, since that would be specific, and instead argues
for a change in a "master" setting for sensitivity or strength of response
to error signal. This will be of particular importance for other aspects
of the mindfulness.

Thanks for listening to some musings. This is really just the tip of an
iceberg I have only begun to explore. I am very excited about the
possibility of using PCT to explain mindfulness.

Blake

--
Dr Warren Mansell
Reader in Clinical Psychology
School of Psychological Sciences
2nd Floor Zochonis Building
University of Manchester
Oxford Road
Manchester M13 9PL
Email: warren.mansell@manchester.ac.uk

Tel: +44 (0) 161 275 8589

Website: http://www.psych-sci.manchester.ac.uk/staff/131406

Advanced notice of a new transdiagnostic therapy manual, authored by Carey,
Mansell & Tai - Principles-Based Counselling and Psychotherapy: A Method of
Levels Approach <http://www.routledge.com/books/details/9780415738781/>
Available Now

Check www.pctweb.org for further information on Perceptual Control Theory

[Martin Taylor 2015.10.14.12.51]

[Blake Ashley (2015, 10/14, at 8:32 Arizona Time)]

Greetings All,

I would like to articulate my understanding of what PCT has to say about awareness,...

Blake, I think your comments and questions are great, but I don't think PCT really has much to say about awareness. Bill Powers had ideas, the MoL people have ideas, I have ideas, you have ideas, and I'll bet there are a lot of different ideas both about when and about why we can be aware of some things but not others. We can list the things and times we become aware, and correlate them with what we think might be happening in a perceptual control hierarchy, but beyond that (or even going just that far) there's not a lot more to say beyond subjective intuition, and not a lot of agreement.

...

One reason this is important when trying to understand mindfulness in PCT terms is the almost universal experience of mindfulness practitioners who, after a few months of practice, will claim that events that used to irritate them now have no effect. For example, the neighbor dogs barking used to cause irritation, but it no longer does. In PCT terms, this could mean one of several things: the sensitivity setting has been turned down, the strength of response to the error signal has been turned down, or the reference perception has been changed to allow for the change in perception created by the environmental disturbance.

This effect seems to be unconscious or subconscious, since the practitioner does not typically notice the change until after it has happened. It seems to creep up on them slowly and then one day the change just pop into awareness.

And the effect seems to be somewhat general. For example, the practitioner not only notices that the barking dog does not generate irritation, but neither does the train delay on the way to work, or the formerly annoying in-law, and so on. This seems to argue against a change in reference perception, since that would be specific, and instead argues for a change in a "master" setting for sensitivity or strength of response to error signal. This will be of particular importance for other aspects of the mindfulness.

All I can add to that is a personal anecdote. I know next to nothing about mindfulness training, but the same "tolerance" transition happened to me as I learned more about PCT and could begin to interpret the annoying events and behaviours differently. There could be a relationship? There is a related mantra, not from PCT: "You are not the target". PCT allows one to hypothesise what controlled perceptions and what reference values might have led to the annoying behaviour in a way that allows you not to be the target, and you aren't the target of what we used to call "the innate perversity of inanimate objects". Could the effect of mindfulness training have anything to do with this mantra?

Martin

···

Thanks for listening to some musings. This is really just the tip of an iceberg I have only begun to explore. I am very excited about the possibility of using PCT to explain mindfulness.

Blake

Certainly does!.... Not to mention the self-acceptance that allows one to tolerate the

···

On 14 Oct 2015, at 17:55, Blake Ashley <Blake.Ashley@tucsonaz.gov> wrote:

[Blake Ashley (2015/10/14 at 9:45 Arizona time)]

WM:
I don't seem to see in your account the importance of managing conflict between control systems as a key process going on in mindfulness, and the importance of going up levels in the perceptual hierarchy in awareness through mindfulness. These seem critical to me....
Warren

BA: Thanks, Warren. One of the alternative appellations (or translations) for mindfulness is "insight meditation" because there is a reported tendency for the practitioner to experience insights into the way in which the perception of self and world arises. That could easily be understood as reports of "up a level" resolutions of conflicts. Perhaps the increased power of concentration and the companion mindfulness skill of increased clarity of perception makes the up-a-level insights easier to come by?

On Wed, Oct 14, 2015 at 4:42 PM, Blake Ashley <Blake.Ashley@tucsonaz.gov> > wrote:

[Blake Ashley (2015, 10/14, at 8:32 Arizona Time)]

Greetings All,

I would like to articulate my understanding of what PCT has to say about
awareness, with perhaps some extensions of my own, and a bit about how this
relates to the practice of mindfulness. This is to some extent an oblique
response to Bruce Nevin's kind welcome to me [20150917:17:10 PT].

As I understand it, awareness is not needed for any control loop to
function. However, awareness can move freely among them, shining
selectively on one, several or perhaps all of them. This awareness can be
moved intentionally or drawn by a disturbance to perception.

When awareness is focused on one particular set of control loops and
ignoring others, we would be conscious of the former and unconscious of the
later.

Bill postulated that awareness is needed for the reorganization function
to operate.

The foregoing is my understanding of what PCT says about awareness. Now
please permit me to suggest a couple possible extensions.

In addition to the parts of the control system upon which the light of
awareness is presently shining ( the conscious), and the other parts of the
hierarchy being ignored by the light of awareness but which COULD be
illuminated by awareness (the unconscious), there are parts of the control
system that seem to be beyond the reach of awareness. Let's call this the
subconscious. Feel free to correct my terminology if I am treading an old
trail.

One example of a part of the control system that is not accessible to
direct awareness is memory. The vast storehouse of memories that feed
imagination and dreaming, and provide reference perceptions, seems to be
off limits to direct awareness. Not having direct access to "the stacks",
it seems that we must ask the special collections librarian to fetch the
memories for us. And, as I approach my 60th birthday, it is painfully
obvious to me that the librarian will take their sweet time about it.
Sometimes the result is instantaneous. Sometimes the result never
arrives. At other times, the librarian shows up out of the blue twenty
minutes after I made the request and plops the memory in my lap. None of
this retrieval process seems to be accessible to direct awareness, so I
relegate it to the subconscious.

Another example of a part of the control system that is not accessible to
awareness is the "settings" of the feedback loop. The sensitivity of a
given loop to a discrepancy between an actual perception and a reference
perception is an important variable in the function of the control loop but
does not seem to be directly accessed by awareness. I cannot, as I sit
here at my desk, bring awareness to just how sensitive I am to the pain of
a dental drill, although I can send for some associated memories and might,
if I dwell on them, elicit an analogous physiological response. Another
important variable I cannot bring into direct awareness is the strength of
the impetus to act to correct a given error signal (is there a correct
technical term for this "strength of response" setting?), although I can
sense the level of urgency as a body sensation when a particular error
signal is ringing.

As I understand it, both the sensitivity to deviation from the reference
perception and the strength of response to an error signal are parameters
subject to reorganization. Yet, they do not appear to be subject to direct
awareness. So the awareness needed for reorganization need not encompass
the actual parameter subject to reorganization.

One reason this is important when trying to understand mindfulness in PCT
terms is the almost universal experience of mindfulness practitioners who,
after a few months of practice, will claim that events that used to
irritate them now have no effect. For example, the neighbor dogs barking
used to cause irritation, but it no longer does. In PCT terms, this could
mean one of several things: the sensitivity setting has been turned down,
the strength of response to the error signal has been turned down, or the
reference perception has been changed to allow for the change in perception
created by the environmental disturbance.

This effect seems to be unconscious or subconscious, since the
practitioner does not typically notice the change until after it has
happened. It seems to creep up on them slowly and then one day the change
just pop into awareness.

And the effect seems to be somewhat general. For example, the
practitioner not only notices that the barking dog does not generate
irritation, but neither does the train delay on the way to work, or the
formerly annoying in-law, and so on. This seems to argue against a change
in reference perception, since that would be specific, and instead argues
for a change in a "master" setting for sensitivity or strength of response
to error signal. This will be of particular importance for other aspects
of the mindfulness.

Thanks for listening to some musings. This is really just the tip of an
iceberg I have only begun to explore. I am very excited about the
possibility of using PCT to explain mindfulness.

Blake

--
Dr Warren Mansell
Reader in Clinical Psychology
School of Psychological Sciences
2nd Floor Zochonis Building
University of Manchester
Oxford Road
Manchester M13 9PL
Email: warren.mansell@manchester.ac.uk

Tel: +44 (0) 161 275 8589

Website: http://www.psych-sci.manchester.ac.uk/staff/131406

Advanced notice of a new transdiagnostic therapy manual, authored by Carey,
Mansell & Tai - Principles-Based Counselling and Psychotherapy: A Method of
Levels Approach <http://www.routledge.com/books/details/9780415738781/>
Available Now

Check www.pctweb.org for further information on Perceptual Control Theory

[Blake Ashley (2015.10.14, 10:07 Arizona time)]

BA: Thanks for your comments, Martin.

MT:Blake, I think your comments and questions are great, but I don't think
PCT really has much to say about awareness. Bill Powers had ideas, the
MoL people have ideas, I have ideas, you have ideas, and I'll bet there
are a lot of different ideas both about when and about why we can be
aware of some things but not others. We can list the things and times we
become aware, and correlate them with what we think might be happening
in a perceptual control hierarchy, but beyond that (or even going just
that far) there's not a lot more to say beyond subjective intuition, and
not a lot of agreement.

BA: There is an enormous body of literature, ancient and modern, concerning the subjective experiences of mindfulness, including the experiences of awareness. There are large areas of agreement about these experiences. And there is a growing body of systematic research into the benefits, but mostly of the "8 out of 12 people report goodness after the protocol" type, which we all know has problems. Only recently are we getting any objective evidence of what is happening in the brain, in the form of FMRI scans and such. And, frankly, even the objective science is still pretty weak. One of the glaring weaknesses is the lack of anything like a theory as to how mindfulness achieves any of the reported results. I think, for reasons we are only beginning to touch here, that PCT offers the first glimmer of a theory to explain mindfulness. Hopefully, with a robust theory in place, we can start to fill it in with evidence.

MT: "You are not the target". PCT allows one to hypothesise what controlled perceptions and
what reference values might have led to the annoying behaviour in a way
that allows you not to be the target, and you aren't the target of what
we used to call "the innate perversity of inanimate objects". Could the
effect of mindfulness training have anything to do with this mantra?

BA: A venerable modern master of Zen was once asked by a reporter to summarize Buddhism in one sentence. He replied "No self, no problem". Mindfulness practice results in the attenuation and liquefaction of the illusion of the separate, solid and permanent sense of self. As that process matures, there is less and less of a self to be the "victim" of annoyance. There is eventually no reified identity to "own" the discomfort.

And here we get to the crux of my thoughts about PCT and mindfulness. The third skill developed in mindfulness has been called equanimity, acceptance, allowing, non-judgmental awareness, radical non-interference with the flow of experience, and so on. The mindfulness practice generally consists of focusing on some aspect of perception and cultivating an attitude of non-interference with whatever arises. When I first read about PCT I realized that the practice of equanimity relates directly to the operation of the feedback loop. It involves sitting still and NOT acting when error signals arise. It is deliberately re-training some aspect of the feedback loop at a basic level.

In fact, many traditional meditation practices involve intentionally instigating error signals and then greeting them with non-interference - letting the error signals ping away without acting to correct them. Somehow - through reorganization? - this training changes the way experience is processed and ultimately the way the sense of self is experienced. For various other reasons, I think it involves resetting the sensitivity of the comparator or the strength of the response to the error signal and does it in a generalized way across all hierarchies.
                

Martin Taylor <mmt-csg@mmtaylor.net> 10/14/2015 10:02 AM >>>

[Martin Taylor 2015.10.14.12.51]

[Blake Ashley (2015, 10/14, at 8:32 Arizona Time)]

Greetings All,

I would like to articulate my understanding of what PCT has to say about awareness,...

Blake, I think your comments and questions are great, but I don't think
PCT really has much to say about awareness. Bill Powers had ideas, the
MoL people have ideas, I have ideas, you have ideas, and I'll bet there
are a lot of different ideas both about when and about why we can be
aware of some things but not others. We can list the things and times we
become aware, and correlate them with what we think might be happening
in a perceptual control hierarchy, but beyond that (or even going just
that far) there's not a lot more to say beyond subjective intuition, and
not a lot of agreement.

...

One reason this is important when trying to understand mindfulness in PCT terms is the almost universal experience of mindfulness practitioners who, after a few months of practice, will claim that events that used to irritate them now have no effect. For example, the neighbor dogs barking used to cause irritation, but it no longer does. In PCT terms, this could mean one of several things: the sensitivity setting has been turned down, the strength of response to the error signal has been turned down, or the reference perception has been changed to allow for the change in perception created by the environmental disturbance.

This effect seems to be unconscious or subconscious, since the practitioner does not typically notice the change until after it has happened. It seems to creep up on them slowly and then one day the change just pop into awareness.

And the effect seems to be somewhat general. For example, the practitioner not only notices that the barking dog does not generate irritation, but neither does the train delay on the way to work, or the formerly annoying in-law, and so on. This seems to argue against a change in reference perception, since that would be specific, and instead argues for a change in a "master" setting for sensitivity or strength of response to error signal. This will be of particular importance for other aspects of the mindfulness.

All I can add to that is a personal anecdote. I know next to nothing
about mindfulness training, but the same "tolerance" transition happened
to me as I learned more about PCT and could begin to interpret the
annoying events and behaviours differently. There could be a
relationship? There is a related mantra, not from PCT: "You are not the
target". PCT allows one to hypothesise what controlled perceptions and
what reference values might have led to the annoying behaviour in a way
that allows you not to be the target, and you aren't the target of what
we used to call "the innate perversity of inanimate objects". Could the
effect of mindfulness training have anything to do with this mantra?

Martin

···

Thanks for listening to some musings. This is really just the tip of an iceberg I have only begun to explore. I am very excited about the possibility of using PCT to explain mindfulness.

Blake

The perception of having or being a durable, separate self I take to be a perception on the Systems Concept level, as the perceptual hierarchy is presently understood. The objective evidence for this perception is that it is defended when disturbed. Subjective evidence is the fact of awareness. The fact of awareness is a perception, or at least some kind of construct in memory. Awareness itself is something other than either a perception or a memory. Can one be aware of awareness? That is near to a conundrum at the heart of many meditation exercises.

Introspection, memory, and observation suggest to me that disturbance to a self-perception or self-image perception evokes emotion, probably always, whereas disturbance to many other kinds of perceptions does not. There is no particular emotion evoked by disturbances in the demos of LCS III, unless difficulty controlling e.g. a cursor position is a disturbance to some higher-level perception, such as a judgment of one’s performance or competence. B:CP and subsequent discussions in this community identify emotion with perceptions of bodily states. In the brain, the amygdala seems to have an important role using these bodily states (emotions) to categorize perceptions that are associated in memory with what researchers call “emotional stress”, that is, experiences in which an important controlled perception is disturbed, generally (but not always?) due to internal or interpersonal conflict. This categorization by association in memory is done by associating experiences and bodily states (emotions) together, so that either can evoke an imagined experience of the other.

I suspect that the perception of a separated self consists of no more than the mechanisms of defensiveness and reactiveness surrounding it. To begin to give this hunch substance, consider how emotions come to awareness.

My explorations of subjective experience suggest to me that emotions begin without awareness and that we become aware of an emotion after a kind of positive feedback process. To illustrate, begin with a perception that is controlled, in part, by increasing the adrenalin level (subjectively: alertness, preparedness for action). This bodily state is out of awareness, but the amygdala associates it with memories of diverse experiences. The amygdala associates some aspect of present input with a corresponding aspect of one or more of these remembered experiences. (In common parlance, the perceptual input ‘evokes’ these memories by way of the amygdala.) The remembered experiences, or aspects of them, are now controlled in imagination. These imagined perceptions in turn are now also associated by the amygdala with bodily states, e.g. a further increase in adrenalin. As this positive feedback through memory and imagination continues, more perceptions are controlled in imagination. (This is the nature of expectation, predisposition, etc.) As sensory input and effectors are increasingly dedicated to controlling (or preparing to control) this complex of perceptions, ‘real’ and imagined, they become unavailable for control of other perceptions. A conflict emerges and grows between what one is doing with e.g. eyes and hands and what else one might do with them. Perhaps it is this emergent conflict that brings the emotion to awareness. If the imagined perceptions constitute a great deal of the experience, with relatively little actual sensory input, the emotion is an inspecific anxiety or happiness without an identified cause or target.

Quieting this runaway feedback is the basis of equanimity arising out of mindfulness meditation practices. Bodily sensations and associated perceptions are accessible as such more immediately. Experience is more transparently evident without an encrustation of imagined perceptions.

There is some interesting evidence that emotion facilitates or is associated with reorganization, but the relation is unclear to me and can be interpreted in a variety of chicken-and-egg ways. (There are some very clear examples in vol. 4 of the Collected Writings of Milton H. Erickson.) An ordinary PCT hypothesis is that reorganization is triggered by disturbance to intrinsic variables. I surmise that disturbance to self-perception is a threat to physical integrity (as though it were a disturbance to intrinsic variables) to the extent that survival depends upon mutual aid and alliances with peers.

Despite methodological and theoretical limitations, there is a fair amount of useful information in the literature about the amygdala. From a work in progress:

… the amygdala mediates those bodily conditions and states which we subjectively experience as feelings, and a memory that includes strong emotion involves signals to and from the amygdala. These links are the basis of Pavlovian conditioning (Mirolli et al. 2009). Associative links from an imagined/remembered signal to the amygdala and back can result in considerable strengthening of the imagined perception. This is presumably the basis of ‘wishful thinking.’

There is a reciprocal relationship between the amygdala and the right ventrolateral prefrontal cortex (RVLPFC), such that talking about emotions increases activity in the RVLPFC and reduces activity in the amygdala (Lieberman et al. 2007). This is the basis of certain kinds of interventions in emotionally challenging situations, and is an inherent aspect of the Method of Levels, an application of PCT to psychotherapy.

Quite a bit of what is known about the amygdala is resumed in

http://www.im-clever.eu/documents/courses/computational-embodied-neuroscience-1/CEN/files/ConnectionScience2009reviewNew.pdf

though of course it is not a PCT account, and some interpretations of what is known may be questioned.

An overview of amygdala anatomy, development, and (proposed) function is at

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amygdala

Notions of function are of course derived from very broad-brush brain scan analyses finding e.g. “activity here associated with activity there or with thus and such stimuli or tasks”, but that is not without value.

Although it does not bear in any obvious way on these proposals, here’s an extract of a few interesting points, juxtaposed perhaps more usefully than in the WP article.

**Amygdala **

Growth peaks sooner in females than in males.

Growth peaks later in males but grows for longer time & is larger than in females.

Size is predicted by testosterone levels.

Right amygdala

Growth peaks later than left, but grows for a longer time, & is larger.

Its activity is associated with

taking action (physical response to stress, as is typical of males).

negative emotions, esp. fear, sadness.

declarative memory (memory that can be consciously recalled).

face recognition.

It has a role in retention of episodic memory.

It associates emotions with times and places.

Left amygdala

Growth peaks sooner than right, and it grows for a shorter time, & is smaller

More thought rather than action in response to stress

Its activity is associated with

both pleasant & unpleasant emotions

greater recall of details

The lateral amygdalae also receive branches of sensory input directly.

I hope this is useful to consider.

···

On Wed, Oct 14, 2015 at 1:42 PM, Blake Ashley Blake.Ashley@tucsonaz.gov wrote:

[Blake Ashley (2015.10.14, 10:07 Arizona time)]

BA: Thanks for your comments, Martin.

MT:Blake, I think your comments and questions are great, but I don’t think

PCT really has much to say about awareness. Bill Powers had ideas, the

MoL people have ideas, I have ideas, you have ideas, and I’ll bet there

are a lot of different ideas both about when and about why we can be

aware of some things but not others. We can list the things and times we

become aware, and correlate them with what we think might be happening

in a perceptual control hierarchy, but beyond that (or even going just

that far) there’s not a lot more to say beyond subjective intuition, and

not a lot of agreement.

BA: There is an enormous body of literature, ancient and modern, concerning the subjective experiences of mindfulness, including the experiences of awareness. There are large areas of agreement about these experiences. And there is a growing body of systematic research into the benefits, but mostly of the “8 out of 12 people report goodness after the protocol” type, which we all know has problems. Only recently are we getting any objective evidence of what is happening in the brain, in the form of FMRI scans and such. And, frankly, even the objective science is still pretty weak. One of the glaring weaknesses is the lack of anything like a theory as to how mindfulness achieves any of the reported results. I think, for reasons we are only beginning to touch here, that PCT offers the first glimmer of a theory to explain mindfulness. Hopefully, with a robust theory in place, we can start to fill it in with evidence.

MT: “You are not the target”. PCT allows one to hypothesise what controlled perceptions and

what reference values might have led to the annoying behaviour in a way

that allows you not to be the target, and you aren’t the target of what

we used to call “the innate perversity of inanimate objects”. Could the

effect of mindfulness training have anything to do with this mantra?

BA: A venerable modern master of Zen was once asked by a reporter to summarize Buddhism in one sentence. He replied “No self, no problem”. Mindfulness practice results in the attenuation and liquefaction of the illusion of the separate, solid and permanent sense of self. As that process matures, there is less and less of a self to be the “victim” of annoyance. There is eventually no reified identity to “own” the discomfort.

And here we get to the crux of my thoughts about PCT and mindfulness. The third skill developed in mindfulness has been called equanimity, acceptance, allowing, non-judgmental awareness, radical non-interference with the flow of experience, and so on. The mindfulness practice generally consists of focusing on some aspect of perception and cultivating an attitude of non-interference with whatever arises. When I first read about PCT I realized that the practice of equanimity relates directly to the operation of the feedback loop. It involves sitting still and NOT acting when error signals arise. It is deliberately re-training some aspect of the feedback loop at a basic level.

In fact, many traditional meditation practices involve intentionally instigating error signals and then greeting them with non-interference - letting the error signals ping away without acting to correct them. Somehow - through reorganization? - this training changes the way experience is processed and ultimately the way the sense of self is experienced. For various other reasons, I think it involves resetting the sensitivity of the comparator or the strength of the response to the error signal and does it in a generalized way across all hierarchies.

Martin Taylor mmt-csg@mmtaylor.net 10/14/2015 10:02 AM >>>
[Martin Taylor 2015.10.14.12.51]

[Blake Ashley (2015, 10/14, at 8:32 Arizona Time)]

Greetings All,

I would like to articulate my understanding of what PCT has to say about awareness,…

Blake, I think your comments and questions are great, but I don’t think

PCT really has much to say about awareness. Bill Powers had ideas, the

MoL people have ideas, I have ideas, you have ideas, and I’ll bet there

are a lot of different ideas both about when and about why we can be

aware of some things but not others. We can list the things and times we

become aware, and correlate them with what we think might be happening

in a perceptual control hierarchy, but beyond that (or even going just

that far) there’s not a lot more to say beyond subjective intuition, and

not a lot of agreement.

One reason this is important when trying to understand mindfulness in PCT terms is the almost universal experience of mindfulness practitioners who, after a few months of practice, will claim that events that used to irritate them now have no effect. For example, the neighbor dogs barking used to cause irritation, but it no longer does. In PCT terms, this could mean one of several things: the sensitivity setting has been turned down, the strength of response to the error signal has been turned down, or the reference perception has been changed to allow for the change in perception created by the environmental disturbance.

This effect seems to be unconscious or subconscious, since the practitioner does not typically notice the change until after it has happened. It seems to creep up on them slowly and then one day the change just pop into awareness.

And the effect seems to be somewhat general. For example, the practitioner not only notices that the barking dog does not generate irritation, but neither does the train delay on the way to work, or the formerly annoying in-law, and so on. This seems to argue against a change in reference perception, since that would be specific, and instead argues for a change in a “master” setting for sensitivity or strength of response to error signal. This will be of particular importance for other aspects of the mindfulness.

All I can add to that is a personal anecdote. I know next to nothing

about mindfulness training, but the same “tolerance” transition happened

to me as I learned more about PCT and could begin to interpret the

annoying events and behaviours differently. There could be a

relationship? There is a related mantra, not from PCT: "You are not the

target". PCT allows one to hypothesise what controlled perceptions and

what reference values might have led to the annoying behaviour in a way

that allows you not to be the target, and you aren’t the target of what

we used to call “the innate perversity of inanimate objects”. Could the

effect of mindfulness training have anything to do with this mantra?

Martin

Thanks for listening to some musings. This is really just the tip of an iceberg I have only begun to explore. I am very excited about the possibility of using PCT to explain mindfulness.

Blake

In brief: Because of controlling perceptions that are associated in memory with fearful (or pleasant) situations, one imagines that the present situation is frightening (or enjoyable). In a similar way because of resisting disturbances to a self-image perception one imagines that there is such a thing as a persisting, separate self to be defended. In the former case, imagination augments or conceals or distorts perceptual input from the environment and from the body. In the latter case, It is only an imagined perceptual construct.

···

On Fri, Oct 16, 2015 at 7:15 PM, Bruce Nevin bnhpct@gmail.com wrote:

The perception of having or being a durable, separate self I take to be a perception on the Systems Concept level, as the perceptual hierarchy is presently understood. The objective evidence for this perception is that it is defended when disturbed. Subjective evidence is the fact of awareness. The fact of awareness is a perception, or at least some kind of construct in memory. Awareness itself is something other than either a perception or a memory. Can one be aware of awareness? That is near to a conundrum at the heart of many meditation exercises.

Introspection, memory, and observation suggest to me that disturbance to a self-perception or self-image perception evokes emotion, probably always, whereas disturbance to many other kinds of perceptions does not. There is no particular emotion evoked by disturbances in the demos of LCS III, unless difficulty controlling e.g. a cursor position is a disturbance to some higher-level perception, such as a judgment of one’s performance or competence. B:CP and subsequent discussions in this community identify emotion with perceptions of bodily states. In the brain, the amygdala seems to have an important role using these bodily states (emotions) to categorize perceptions that are associated in memory with what researchers call “emotional stress”, that is, experiences in which an important controlled perception is disturbed, generally (but not always?) due to internal or interpersonal conflict. This categorization by association in memory is done by associating experiences and bodily states (emotions) together, so that either can evoke an imagined experience of the other.

I suspect that the perception of a separated self consists of no more than the mechanisms of defensiveness and reactiveness surrounding it. To begin to give this hunch substance, consider how emotions come to awareness.

My explorations of subjective experience suggest to me that emotions begin without awareness and that we become aware of an emotion after a kind of positive feedback process. To illustrate, begin with a perception that is controlled, in part, by increasing the adrenalin level (subjectively: alertness, preparedness for action). This bodily state is out of awareness, but the amygdala associates it with memories of diverse experiences. The amygdala associates some aspect of present input with a corresponding aspect of one or more of these remembered experiences. (In common parlance, the perceptual input ‘evokes’ these memories by way of the amygdala.) The remembered experiences, or aspects of them, are now controlled in imagination. These imagined perceptions in turn are now also associated by the amygdala with bodily states, e.g. a further increase in adrenalin. As this positive feedback through memory and imagination continues, more perceptions are controlled in imagination. (This is the nature of expectation, predisposition, etc.) As sensory input and effectors are increasingly dedicated to controlling (or preparing to control) this complex of perceptions, ‘real’ and imagined, they become unavailable for control of other perceptions. A conflict emerges and grows between what one is doing with e.g. eyes and hands and what else one might do with them. Perhaps it is this emergent conflict that brings the emotion to awareness. If the imagined perceptions constitute a great deal of the experience, with relatively little actual sensory input, the emotion is an inspecific anxiety or happiness without an identified cause or target.

Quieting this runaway feedback is the basis of equanimity arising out of mindfulness meditation practices. Bodily sensations and associated perceptions are accessible as such more immediately. Experience is more transparently evident without an encrustation of imagined perceptions.

There is some interesting evidence that emotion facilitates or is associated with reorganization, but the relation is unclear to me and can be interpreted in a variety of chicken-and-egg ways. (There are some very clear examples in vol. 4 of the Collected Writings of Milton H. Erickson.) An ordinary PCT hypothesis is that reorganization is triggered by disturbance to intrinsic variables. I surmise that disturbance to self-perception is a threat to physical integrity (as though it were a disturbance to intrinsic variables) to the extent that survival depends upon mutual aid and alliances with peers.

Despite methodological and theoretical limitations, there is a fair amount of useful information in the literature about the amygdala. From a work in progress:

… the amygdala mediates those bodily conditions and states which we subjectively experience as feelings, and a memory that includes strong emotion involves signals to and from the amygdala. These links are the basis of Pavlovian conditioning (Mirolli et al. 2009). Associative links from an imagined/remembered signal to the amygdala and back can result in considerable strengthening of the imagined perception. This is presumably the basis of ‘wishful thinking.’

There is a reciprocal relationship between the amygdala and the right ventrolateral prefrontal cortex (RVLPFC), such that talking about emotions increases activity in the RVLPFC and reduces activity in the amygdala (Lieberman et al. 2007). This is the basis of certain kinds of interventions in emotionally challenging situations, and is an inherent aspect of the Method of Levels, an application of PCT to psychotherapy.

Quite a bit of what is known about the amygdala is resumed in

http://www.im-clever.eu/documents/courses/computational-embodied-neuroscience-1/CEN/files/ConnectionScience2009reviewNew.pdf

though of course it is not a PCT account, and some interpretations of what is known may be questioned.

An overview of amygdala anatomy, development, and (proposed) function is at

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amygdala

Notions of function are of course derived from very broad-brush brain scan analyses finding e.g. “activity here associated with activity there or with thus and such stimuli or tasks”, but that is not without value.

Although it does not bear in any obvious way on these proposals, here’s an extract of a few interesting points, juxtaposed perhaps more usefully than in the WP article.

**Amygdala **

Growth peaks sooner in females than in males.

Growth peaks later in males but grows for longer time & is larger than in females.

Size is predicted by testosterone levels.

Right amygdala

Growth peaks later than left, but grows for a longer time, & is larger.

Its activity is associated with

taking action (physical response to stress, as is typical of males).

negative emotions, esp. fear, sadness.

declarative memory (memory that can be consciously recalled).

face recognition.

It has a role in retention of episodic memory.

It associates emotions with times and places.

Left amygdala

Growth peaks sooner than right, and it grows for a shorter time, & is smaller

More thought rather than action in response to stress

Its activity is associated with

both pleasant & unpleasant emotions

greater recall of details

The lateral amygdalae also receive branches of sensory input directly.

I hope this is useful to consider.

/Bruce Nevin

On Wed, Oct 14, 2015 at 1:42 PM, Blake Ashley Blake.Ashley@tucsonaz.gov wrote:

[Blake Ashley (2015.10.14, 10:07 Arizona time)]

BA: Thanks for your comments, Martin.

MT:Blake, I think your comments and questions are great, but I don’t think

PCT really has much to say about awareness. Bill Powers had ideas, the

MoL people have ideas, I have ideas, you have ideas, and I’ll bet there

are a lot of different ideas both about when and about why we can be

aware of some things but not others. We can list the things and times we

become aware, and correlate them with what we think might be happening

in a perceptual control hierarchy, but beyond that (or even going just

that far) there’s not a lot more to say beyond subjective intuition, and

not a lot of agreement.

BA: There is an enormous body of literature, ancient and modern, concerning the subjective experiences of mindfulness, including the experiences of awareness. There are large areas of agreement about these experiences. And there is a growing body of systematic research into the benefits, but mostly of the “8 out of 12 people report goodness after the protocol” type, which we all know has problems. Only recently are we getting any objective evidence of what is happening in the brain, in the form of FMRI scans and such. And, frankly, even the objective science is still pretty weak. One of the glaring weaknesses is the lack of anything like a theory as to how mindfulness achieves any of the reported results. I think, for reasons we are only beginning to touch here, that PCT offers the first glimmer of a theory to explain mindfulness. Hopefully, with a robust theory in place, we can start to fill it in with evidence.

MT: “You are not the target”. PCT allows one to hypothesise what controlled perceptions and

what reference values might have led to the annoying behaviour in a way

that allows you not to be the target, and you aren’t the target of what

we used to call “the innate perversity of inanimate objects”. Could the

effect of mindfulness training have anything to do with this mantra?

BA: A venerable modern master of Zen was once asked by a reporter to summarize Buddhism in one sentence. He replied “No self, no problem”. Mindfulness practice results in the attenuation and liquefaction of the illusion of the separate, solid and permanent sense of self. As that process matures, there is less and less of a self to be the “victim” of annoyance. There is eventually no reified identity to “own” the discomfort.

And here we get to the crux of my thoughts about PCT and mindfulness. The third skill developed in mindfulness has been called equanimity, acceptance, allowing, non-judgmental awareness, radical non-interference with the flow of experience, and so on. The mindfulness practice generally consists of focusing on some aspect of perception and cultivating an attitude of non-interference with whatever arises. When I first read about PCT I realized that the practice of equanimity relates directly to the operation of the feedback loop. It involves sitting still and NOT acting when error signals arise. It is deliberately re-training some aspect of the feedback loop at a basic level.

In fact, many traditional meditation practices involve intentionally instigating error signals and then greeting them with non-interference - letting the error signals ping away without acting to correct them. Somehow - through reorganization? - this training changes the way experience is processed and ultimately the way the sense of self is experienced. For various other reasons, I think it involves resetting the sensitivity of the comparator or the strength of the response to the error signal and does it in a generalized way across all hierarchies.

Martin Taylor mmt-csg@mmtaylor.net 10/14/2015 10:02 AM >>>
[Martin Taylor 2015.10.14.12.51]

[Blake Ashley (2015, 10/14, at 8:32 Arizona Time)]

Greetings All,

I would like to articulate my understanding of what PCT has to say about awareness,…

Blake, I think your comments and questions are great, but I don’t think

PCT really has much to say about awareness. Bill Powers had ideas, the

MoL people have ideas, I have ideas, you have ideas, and I’ll bet there

are a lot of different ideas both about when and about why we can be

aware of some things but not others. We can list the things and times we

become aware, and correlate them with what we think might be happening

in a perceptual control hierarchy, but beyond that (or even going just

that far) there’s not a lot more to say beyond subjective intuition, and

not a lot of agreement.

One reason this is important when trying to understand mindfulness in PCT terms is the almost universal experience of mindfulness practitioners who, after a few months of practice, will claim that events that used to irritate them now have no effect. For example, the neighbor dogs barking used to cause irritation, but it no longer does. In PCT terms, this could mean one of several things: the sensitivity setting has been turned down, the strength of response to the error signal has been turned down, or the reference perception has been changed to allow for the change in perception created by the environmental disturbance.

This effect seems to be unconscious or subconscious, since the practitioner does not typically notice the change until after it has happened. It seems to creep up on them slowly and then one day the change just pop into awareness.

And the effect seems to be somewhat general. For example, the practitioner not only notices that the barking dog does not generate irritation, but neither does the train delay on the way to work, or the formerly annoying in-law, and so on. This seems to argue against a change in reference perception, since that would be specific, and instead argues for a change in a “master” setting for sensitivity or strength of response to error signal. This will be of particular importance for other aspects of the mindfulness.

All I can add to that is a personal anecdote. I know next to nothing

about mindfulness training, but the same “tolerance” transition happened

to me as I learned more about PCT and could begin to interpret the

annoying events and behaviours differently. There could be a

relationship? There is a related mantra, not from PCT: "You are not the

target". PCT allows one to hypothesise what controlled perceptions and

what reference values might have led to the annoying behaviour in a way

that allows you not to be the target, and you aren’t the target of what

we used to call “the innate perversity of inanimate objects”. Could the

effect of mindfulness training have anything to do with this mantra?

Martin

Thanks for listening to some musings. This is really just the tip of an iceberg I have only begun to explore. I am very excited about the possibility of using PCT to explain mindfulness.

Blake

[From Rick Marken (2015.10.18.1000)]

···

On Fri, Oct 16, 2015 at 4:15 PM, Bruce Nevin bnhpct@gmail.com wrote:

BN: Awareness itself is something other than either a perception or a memory. Can one be aware of awareness? That is near to a conundrum at the heart of many meditation exercises.

RM: It’s a conundrum for me too, and I don’t even meditate. Awareness clearly seems to sit “outside” of the control hierarchy, as is evidenced by the fact that we can become aware of what we are doing (our own controlling can become an object of awareness) and lose awareness of it (we can control without awareness). For example, I am usually typing these words without any awareness of the pressure variations on the tips of my fingers that I am producing in order to produce the letters on the screen; but I can become aware of those pressure variations by somehow shifting my awareness to my finger tips. One mystery is “what in me is doing the awareness shifting?” and another is "“what in me is aware of that change in awareness?”.

RM: This is all way too complicated for me. But one thing I would say is that all this talk about awareness – all this thinking – is being done, according to PCT, by the control hierarchy, not by consciousness itself (again evidenced by the fact that we can talk and reason – we can control – without being conscious that we are doing it, as when we talk in our sleep or during a boring lecture that we are giving;-). When I say “I am aware of the pressure on my fingertips” it is the control hierarchy that is saying that, not the aspect of me that has brought awareness to the fingertips and that is not aware of that pressure. From a PCT perspective awareness is an aspect of consciousness (the other aspect of consciousness is volition – arbitrarily controlling some perception, like lifting a finger, for no reason other than deciding to do it, not to achieve some higher level goal in the hierarchy) and consciousness (awareness and volition) doesn’t “talk” or think (in theory, at least).

RM: So somehow the control hierarchy is able to talk (and reason) about something that it does not experience (at least per current theory; there is nothing in the PCT model that makes experience of awareness available to the control hierarchy). So how is it that I am able to talk (and reason) about the difference between doing something with and without awareness? And how do we voluntarily shift our awareness from one place to another? And why does awareness sometimes shift involuntarily (as when someone goes “up a level” in the MOL without intending to). There seems to be an interaction between controlling and varying awareness/volition that is not yet part of PCT.

RM: I think the people who might eventually be in the best position to answer these questions are the ones working MOL therapy, which is all about moving awareness to the “right” place.

Best

Rick


Richard S. Marken

www.mindreadings.com
Author of Doing Research on Purpose.
Now available from Amazon or Barnes & Noble

Um, why didn’t you mention pain?

···

On Fri, Oct 16, 2015 at 4:15 PM, Bruce Nevin bnhpct@gmail.com wrote:

BN: Awareness itself is something other than either a perception or a memory. Can one be aware of awareness? That is near to a conundrum at the heart of many meditation exercises.

RM: It’s a conundrum for me too, and I don’t even meditate. Awareness clearly seems to sit “outside” of the control hierarchy, as is evidenced by the fact that we can become aware of what we are doing (our own controlling can become an object of awareness) and lose awareness of it (we can control without awareness). For example, I am usually typing these words without any awareness of the pressure variations on the tips of my fingers that I am producing in order to produce the letters on the screen; but I can become aware of those pressure variations by somehow shifting my awareness to my finger tips. One mystery is “what in me is doing the awareness shifting?” and another is "“what in me is aware of that change in awareness?”.

RM: This is all way too complicated for me. But one thing I would say is that all this talk about awareness – all this thinking – is being done, according to PCT, by the control hierarchy, not by consciousness itself (again evidenced by the fact that we can talk and reason – we can control – without being conscious that we are doing it, as when we talk in our sleep or during a boring lecture that we are giving;-). When I say “I am aware of the pressure on my fingertips” it is the control hierarchy that is saying that, not the aspect of me that has brought awareness to the fingertips and that is not aware of that pressure. From a PCT perspective awareness is an aspect of consciousness (the other aspect of consciousness is volition – arbitrarily controlling some perception, like lifting a finger, for no reason other than deciding to do it, not to achieve some higher level goal in the hierarchy) and consciousness (awareness and volition) doesn’t “talk” or think (in theory, at least).

RM: So somehow the control hierarchy is able to talk (and reason) about something that it does not experience (at least per current theory; there is nothing in the PCT model that makes experience of awareness available to the control hierarchy). So how is it that I am able to talk (and reason) about the difference between doing something with and without awareness? And how do we voluntarily shift our awareness from one place to another? And why does awareness sometimes shift involuntarily (as when someone goes “up a level” in the MOL without intending to). There seems to be an interaction between controlling and varying awareness/volition that is not yet part of PCT.

RM: I think the people who might eventually be in the best position to answer these questions are the ones working MOL therapy, which is all about moving awareness to the “right” place.

Best

Rick


Richard S. Marken

www.mindreadings.com
Author of Doing Research on Purpose.
Now available from Amazon or Barnes & Noble

[From Rick Marken (2015.10.18.1030)]

···

On Sun, Oct 18, 2015 at 10:14 AM, PHILIP JERAIR YERANOSIAN pyeranos@ucla.edu wrote:

PY: Um, why didn’t you mention pain?

RM: Why didn’t you mentioned why I should have? :wink:

RM: Pain is certainly a perception that is difficult to ignore (to remain unaware or unconscious of). So I guess it is a good example of a very strong interaction between perception (presumably a function of the control hierarchy) and consciousness. Actually, in MOL they do talk about awareness (consciousness) being routed to places in the control hierarchy where there is chronic error (which presumably results in emotional pain). So the idea that there is some interaction between controlling (carried out by the control hierarchy) and variations in awareness/volition (carried out bu the reorganization system) is part of PCT. It’s just that the mechanism of this interaction is not clearly spelled out.

Best

Rick

On Sunday, October 18, 2015, Richard Marken rsmarken@gmail.com wrote:

[From Rick Marken (2015.10.18.1000)]

On Fri, Oct 16, 2015 at 4:15 PM, Bruce Nevin bnhpct@gmail.com wrote:

BN: Awareness itself is something other than either a perception or a memory. Can one be aware of awareness? That is near to a conundrum at the heart of many meditation exercises.

RM: It’s a conundrum for me too, and I don’t even meditate. Awareness clearly seems to sit “outside” of the control hierarchy, as is evidenced by the fact that we can become aware of what we are doing (our own controlling can become an object of awareness) and lose awareness of it (we can control without awareness). For example, I am usually typing these words without any awareness of the pressure variations on the tips of my fingers that I am producing in order to produce the letters on the screen; but I can become aware of those pressure variations by somehow shifting my awareness to my finger tips. One mystery is “what in me is doing the awareness shifting?” and another is "“what in me is aware of that change in awareness?”.

RM: This is all way too complicated for me. But one thing I would say is that all this talk about awareness – all this thinking – is being done, according to PCT, by the control hierarchy, not by consciousness itself (again evidenced by the fact that we can talk and reason – we can control – without being conscious that we are doing it, as when we talk in our sleep or during a boring lecture that we are giving;-). When I say “I am aware of the pressure on my fingertips” it is the control hierarchy that is saying that, not the aspect of me that has brought awareness to the fingertips and that is not aware of that pressure. From a PCT perspective awareness is an aspect of consciousness (the other aspect of consciousness is volition – arbitrarily controlling some perception, like lifting a finger, for no reason other than deciding to do it, not to achieve some higher level goal in the hierarchy) and consciousness (awareness and volition) doesn’t “talk” or think (in theory, at least).

RM: So somehow the control hierarchy is able to talk (and reason) about something that it does not experience (at least per current theory; there is nothing in the PCT model that makes experience of awareness available to the control hierarchy). So how is it that I am able to talk (and reason) about the difference between doing something with and without awareness? And how do we voluntarily shift our awareness from one place to another? And why does awareness sometimes shift involuntarily (as when someone goes “up a level” in the MOL without intending to). There seems to be an interaction between controlling and varying awareness/volition that is not yet part of PCT.

RM: I think the people who might eventually be in the best position to answer these questions are the ones working MOL therapy, which is all about moving awareness to the “right” place.

Best

Rick


Richard S. Marken

www.mindreadings.com
Author of Doing Research on Purpose.
Now available from Amazon or Barnes & Noble

Richard S. Marken

www.mindreadings.com
Author of Doing Research on Purpose.
Now available from Amazon or Barnes & Noble

Pain grabs the attention. It is the number one reason for awareness.

I am usually typing these words without any awareness of the pressure variations on the tips of my fingers that I am producing in order to produce the letters on the screen; but I can become aware of those pressure variations by somehow shifting my awareness to my finger tips. One mystery is “what in me is doing the awareness shifting?” and another is "“what in me is aware of that change in awareness?”.

The switch is the perceptual switch from automatic to control mode which Bill admitted he didn’t understand why it should occur either.

···

On Sun, Oct 18, 2015 at 10:14 AM, PHILIP JERAIR YERANOSIAN pyeranos@ucla.edu wrote:

PY: Um, why didn’t you mention pain?

RM: Why didn’t you mentioned why I should have? :wink:

RM: Pain is certainly a perception that is difficult to ignore (to remain unaware or unconscious of). So I guess it is a good example of a very strong interaction between perception (presumably a function of the control hierarchy) and consciousness. Actually, in MOL they do talk about awareness (consciousness) being routed to places in the control hierarchy where there is chronic error (which presumably results in emotional pain). So the idea that there is some interaction between controlling (carried out by the control hierarchy) and variations in awareness/volition (carried out bu the reorganization system) is part of PCT. It’s just that the mechanism of this interaction is not clearly spelled out.

Best

Rick

On Sunday, October 18, 2015, Richard Marken rsmarken@gmail.com wrote:

[From Rick Marken (2015.10.18.1000)]


Richard S. Marken

www.mindreadings.com
Author of Doing Research on Purpose.
Now available from Amazon or Barnes & Noble

On Fri, Oct 16, 2015 at 4:15 PM, Bruce Nevin bnhpct@gmail.com wrote:

BN: Awareness itself is something other than either a perception or a memory. Can one be aware of awareness? That is near to a conundrum at the heart of many meditation exercises.

RM: It’s a conundrum for me too, and I don’t even meditate. Awareness clearly seems to sit “outside” of the control hierarchy, as is evidenced by the fact that we can become aware of what we are doing (our own controlling can become an object of awareness) and lose awareness of it (we can control without awareness). For example, I am usually typing these words without any awareness of the pressure variations on the tips of my fingers that I am producing in order to produce the letters on the screen; but I can become aware of those pressure variations by somehow shifting my awareness to my finger tips. One mystery is “what in me is doing the awareness shifting?” and another is "“what in me is aware of that change in awareness?”.

RM: This is all way too complicated for me. But one thing I would say is that all this talk about awareness – all this thinking – is being done, according to PCT, by the control hierarchy, not by consciousness itself (again evidenced by the fact that we can talk and reason – we can control – without being conscious that we are doing it, as when we talk in our sleep or during a boring lecture that we are giving;-). When I say “I am aware of the pressure on my fingertips” it is the control hierarchy that is saying that, not the aspect of me that has brought awareness to the fingertips and that is not aware of that pressure. From a PCT perspective awareness is an aspect of consciousness (the other aspect of consciousness is volition – arbitrarily controlling some perception, like lifting a finger, for no reason other than deciding to do it, not to achieve some higher level goal in the hierarchy) and consciousness (awareness and volition) doesn’t “talk” or think (in theory, at least).

RM: So somehow the control hierarchy is able to talk (and reason) about something that it does not experience (at least per current theory; there is nothing in the PCT model that makes experience of awareness available to the control hierarchy). So how is it that I am able to talk (and reason) about the difference between doing something with and without awareness? And how do we voluntarily shift our awareness from one place to another? And why does awareness sometimes shift involuntarily (as when someone goes “up a level” in the MOL without intending to). There seems to be an interaction between controlling and varying awareness/volition that is not yet part of PCT.

RM: I think the people who might eventually be in the best position to answer these questions are the ones working MOL therapy, which is all about moving awareness to the “right” place.

Best

Rick


Richard S. Marken

www.mindreadings.com
Author of Doing Research on Purpose.
Now available from Amazon or Barnes & Noble

[Martin Taylor 2015.10.18.18.02]

Pain grabs the attention. It is the number one reason for awareness.

Not in my experience, and I'm sorry if that is your experience.

I am aware of lots of things right now, but I feel no pain. That is true most of the time. There have been times when I have done something like bang my knee and someone has said "Doesn't it hurt", to which my response is sometimes "Yes, now that you mentioned it." I hadn't been aware of it. The same is true of some chronic pains. In fact, now I think of it, my right foot does hurt, and has been hurting for some days, but until I focussed my attention onto my bodily sensations to see if anything was hurting, I had not been aware of it. So I now am aware of pain, and it's your fault!

Martin

···

On 2015/10/18 1:38 PM, PHILIP JERAIR YERANOSIAN wrote:

RM: I think the people who might eventually be in the best position to answer these questions are the ones working MOL therapy, which is all about moving awareness to the “right” place.

BN: Of course, as we know, the therapist is not moving the awareness, and anyway has no idea what the “right” place is, not if heshe is doing MoL properly. The “right” place is a vantage from which both motivations of the conflict are in view at the same time within the client, regardless of what the therapist knows or does not know. When both are in the client’s awareness at the same time, or perhaps rather when both are together simultaneously in the scope of higher-level problem-solving control systems, they sort themselves out by ways that often are partially or even entirely out of awareness. The awareness is mainly that the oppression of conflict is lifted.

An analysis of transcripts of MoL sessions might shed some light, and would certainly be interesting. My impression from the videos is that at least some of the time the next move on a path to the ‘right’ place is not up a level in the hierarchy but rather ‘sideways’ to a vantage of commentary. A description in language is not up a level, it’s sideways. Likewise, imagery in eidetic, kinesthetic, musical, etc. modes of representation are not up a level, and like language they can provide a vantage from which both instigators of a conflict swim into the same scope and can sort themselves out, or be sorted out by actually up-a-level problem-solving systems that nevertheless may not require awareness to succeed. This is the basis of e.g. Jungian work with dreams.

I should also mention Milton Erickson’s case histories again. A separation of different levels of awareness (such that ordinary quotidian awareness is unaware of what the second or socalled ‘unconscious’ level is aware of) can enable the client to bring the internal instigators of conflict into communication with each other when without that expedient strong emotion associated with trauma is too scary for her or him, and can then reach a resolution. With the resolution a recovery of memory accessible to quotidian awareness may not be necessary. Such decisions are made by the client at the second level of awareness. The client often goes on with life just happily aware of not having that problem any more, with no idea of how it came about or what was involved, and not needing to know. Erickson sometimes thumbs his nose at the “everything must come to consciousness” schools. Fascinating stuff that PCT will have to come to terms with sometime.

···

On Sun, Oct 18, 2015 at 1:03 PM, Richard Marken rsmarken@gmail.com wrote:

[From Rick Marken (2015.10.18.1000)]

On Fri, Oct 16, 2015 at 4:15 PM, Bruce Nevin bnhpct@gmail.com wrote:

BN: Awareness itself is something other than either a perception or a memory. Can one be aware of awareness? That is near to a conundrum at the heart of many meditation exercises.

RM: It’s a conundrum for me too, and I don’t even meditate. Awareness clearly seems to sit “outside” of the control hierarchy, as is evidenced by the fact that we can become aware of what we are doing (our own controlling can become an object of awareness) and lose awareness of it (we can control without awareness). For example, I am usually typing these words without any awareness of the pressure variations on the tips of my fingers that I am producing in order to produce the letters on the screen; but I can become aware of those pressure variations by somehow shifting my awareness to my finger tips. One mystery is “what in me is doing the awareness shifting?” and another is "“what in me is aware of that change in awareness?”.

RM: This is all way too complicated for me. But one thing I would say is that all this talk about awareness – all this thinking – is being done, according to PCT, by the control hierarchy, not by consciousness itself (again evidenced by the fact that we can talk and reason – we can control – without being conscious that we are doing it, as when we talk in our sleep or during a boring lecture that we are giving;-). When I say “I am aware of the pressure on my fingertips” it is the control hierarchy that is saying that, not the aspect of me that has brought awareness to the fingertips and that is not aware of that pressure. From a PCT perspective awareness is an aspect of consciousness (the other aspect of consciousness is volition – arbitrarily controlling some perception, like lifting a finger, for no reason other than deciding to do it, not to achieve some higher level goal in the hierarchy) and consciousness (awareness and volition) doesn’t “talk” or think (in theory, at least).

RM: So somehow the control hierarchy is able to talk (and reason) about something that it does not experience (at least per current theory; there is nothing in the PCT model that makes experience of awareness available to the control hierarchy). So how is it that I am able to talk (and reason) about the difference between doing something with and without awareness? And how do we voluntarily shift our awareness from one place to another? And why does awareness sometimes shift involuntarily (as when someone goes “up a level” in the MOL without intending to). There seems to be an interaction between controlling and varying awareness/volition that is not yet part of PCT.

RM: I think the people who might eventually be in the best position to answer these questions are the ones working MOL therapy, which is all about moving awareness to the “right” place.

Best

Rick

Richard S. Marken

www.mindreadings.com
Author of Doing Research on Purpose.
Now available from Amazon or Barnes & Noble

Martin, I didn’t expect an amateur response. I wasn’t talking about a bump to the knee but rather to serious debilitating pain. Are you saying you’ve never been in serious pain before? Nothing more than a bump to the knee. You’ve never had your bones broken or your joints dislocated or even your teeth kicked in? Well I have, and it’s pretty stupid.

When severe pain occurs, it blocks everything else from awareness. There is hardly a choice in the matter.

But in the absence of pain, as you are, awareness is like a pointer to the last thing in memory (i.e. the “hardware stack”), like a program counter in the CPU. It’s pretty simple.

But people are talking about attention diffusion, such as when you let your attention drift or diffuse to various points of the body. There is nothing much I can say except this: you tend to stop dilly dallying with your conscious mind when you lose control of high level variables.

[Martin Taylor 2015.10.18.19.59]

···

On 2015/10/18 7:47 PM, PHILIP JERAIR YERANOSIAN wrote:

Martin, I didn't expect an amateur response.

Well, I guess you weren't expecting any response then. Everybody is an amateur in awareness and consciousness.

Martin

Did you look at the videos I posted? Are you aware of the work of Lloyd Pie? I would hardly consider him to be an amateur in awareness…the poor soul.

···

On Sunday, October 18, 2015, Martin Taylor mmt-csg@mmtaylor.net wrote:

[Martin Taylor 2015.10.18.19.59]

On 2015/10/18 7:47 PM, PHILIP JERAIR YERANOSIAN wrote:

Martin, I didn’t expect an amateur response.

Well, I guess you weren’t expecting any response then. Everybody is an amateur in awareness and consciousness.

Martin

[Martin Taylor 2015.10.18.23.09]

I started the first one, but I got bored very quickly with his

misrepresentations, so I quit. “Climbing out of the primordial
sludge 5 to 8 million years ago”? Really?
It’s irrelevant to my comment, anyway. No matter whether the writer
has a Ph.D. in Philosophy, or a Nobel in physiology, when it comes
to consciousness, we are all amateurs when it comes to
consciousness. We may be able to correlated moments of consciousness
with this or that aspect of our favourite model of how we work, but
who has a testable mechanism to produce it that fits people’s
experience? You expected a professional response from CSGnet? Why?
Martin

···

On 2015/10/18 8:05 PM, PHILIP JERAIR
YERANOSIAN wrote:

  Did you look at the videos I posted? Are you aware of

the work of Lloyd Pie? I would hardly consider him to be an
amateur in awareness…the poor soul.

  On Sunday, October 18, 2015, Martin Taylor <      >

wrote:

mmt-csg@mmtaylor.net

    [Martin Taylor

2015.10.18.19.59]

    On 2015/10/18 7:47 PM, PHILIP JERAIR YERANOSIAN wrote:

Martin, I didn’t expect an amateur response.

    Well, I guess you weren't expecting any response then. Everybody

is an amateur in awareness and consciousness.

    Martin

Hmm. I commend you for trying to watch the video, Martin. You said you watched “the first one”, but there’s only one. The second is a video of Pye describing that he has a soft-ball sized tumor “out of left field”, and he’s asking for help. Too late now, he’s dead. Died the same year as Powers, but not of natural causes.

Regarding your comment, you didn’t do a good job explaining to me why you stopped watching. The standard technique I employ when I get bored or can’t stand watching anymore is to skip 20 minutes ahead. For a 2 hour video, that means you’ll skip ahead 6 times.

Please be more specific about these “annoying misrepresentations”.

“Climbing out of the primordial sludge 5 to 8 million years ago”

I don’t remember this one. Is he referring to human ancestors?

Indeed, he is not addressing the issue of consciousness. I was referring to consciousness as a general awareness of various things. Consciousness is hard to describe, but I am equally hard to evade.

Do I expect a professional response from CSGnet? I don’t really expect anything from anyone who doesn’t commit his soul to the quest for ultimate knowledge.

DISCLAIMER: The following is classified information. Any disclosure of the following to unauthorized individuals may result in spontaneous combustion and/or a $1 billion debt to Dr Evil.

I could be wrong, but I’m pretty sure that consciousness is a perception of the program code during the runtime of the program. Any sufficiently advanced knowledge of the future of computing will lead you to think along these lines. Note, this mechanism does not really exist in any sense in computing today, and it will be challenging to implement, but I’m pretty sure this is what it is. At this point, I have only a vague understanding of what it would mean to look at the program code from inside the program. But it makes me think of Gödel.

Tomorrow I’m going to see about a PhD program at ucla where I will try to tackle both consciousness and the origin of life in one sitting/setting. It will take me about a year to complete this monumental task. Perhaps less, so long as I continue to read an average of 4 books per day (it’s true, I study 10 hours/day). Let’s just admit that I’m barely hardworking enough to figure everything out in 365 days. All I can really admit to is that PCT lets me see through all the bullshit in programming and mathematix in particular, which is why I can advance at near luminal velocity. I’m just sort of…quick. My professors are obviously terrified.

One of my first self-assignments is to formally beat the game of chess. Ill report back when I successfully land on the surface of Mars. Wish me luck everyone.

···

On Sunday, October 18, 2015, Martin Taylor mmt-csg@mmtaylor.net wrote:

[Martin Taylor 2015.10.18.23.09]

  On 2015/10/18 8:05 PM, PHILIP JERAIR > YERANOSIAN wrote:
  Did you look at the videos I posted? Are you aware of

the work of Lloyd Pie? I would hardly consider him to be an
amateur in awareness…the poor soul.

I started the first one, but I got bored very quickly with his

misrepresentations, so I quit. “Climbing out of the primordial
sludge 5 to 8 million years ago”? Really?

It's irrelevant to my comment, anyway. No matter whether the writer

has a Ph.D. in Philosophy, or a Nobel in physiology, when it comes
to consciousness, we are all amateurs when it comes to
consciousness. We may be able to correlated moments of consciousness
with this or that aspect of our favourite model of how we work, but
who has a testable mechanism to produce it that fits people’s
experience? You expected a professional response from CSGnet? Why?

Martin
  On Sunday, October 18, 2015, Martin Taylor <mmt-csg@mmtaylor.net      > > > wrote:
    [Martin Taylor

2015.10.18.19.59]

    On 2015/10/18 7:47 PM, PHILIP JERAIR YERANOSIAN wrote:

Martin, I didn’t expect an amateur response.

    Well, I guess you weren't expecting any response then. Everybody

is an amateur in awareness and consciousness.

    Martin

Good luck Philip!

Warren

···

On Monday, October 19, 2015, PHILIP JERAIR YERANOSIAN pyeranos@ucla.edu wrote:

Hmm. I commend you for trying to watch the video, Martin. You said you watched “the first one”, but there’s only one. The second is a video of Pye describing that he has a soft-ball sized tumor “out of left field”, and he’s asking for help. Too late now, he’s dead. Died the same year as Powers, but not of natural causes.

Regarding your comment, you didn’t do a good job explaining to me why you stopped watching. The standard technique I employ when I get bored or can’t stand watching anymore is to skip 20 minutes ahead. For a 2 hour video, that means you’ll skip ahead 6 times.

Please be more specific about these “annoying misrepresentations”.

“Climbing out of the primordial sludge 5 to 8 million years ago”

I don’t remember this one. Is he referring to human ancestors?

Indeed, he is not addressing the issue of consciousness. I was referring to consciousness as a general awareness of various things. Consciousness is hard to describe, but I am equally hard to evade.

Do I expect a professional response from CSGnet? I don’t really expect anything from anyone who doesn’t commit his soul to the quest for ultimate knowledge.

DISCLAIMER: The following is classified information. Any disclosure of the following to unauthorized individuals may result in spontaneous combustion and/or a $1 billion debt to Dr Evil.

I could be wrong, but I’m pretty sure that consciousness is a perception of the program code during the runtime of the program. Any sufficiently advanced knowledge of the future of computing will lead you to think along these lines. Note, this mechanism does not really exist in any sense in computing today, and it will be challenging to implement, but I’m pretty sure this is what it is. At this point, I have only a vague understanding of what it would mean to look at the program code from inside the program. But it makes me think of Gödel.

Tomorrow I’m going to see about a PhD program at ucla where I will try to tackle both consciousness and the origin of life in one sitting/setting. It will take me about a year to complete this monumental task. Perhaps less, so long as I continue to read an average of 4 books per day (it’s true, I study 10 hours/day). Let’s just admit that I’m barely hardworking enough to figure everything out in 365 days. All I can really admit to is that PCT lets me see through all the bullshit in programming and mathematix in particular, which is why I can advance at near luminal velocity. I’m just sort of…quick. My professors are obviously terrified.

One of my first self-assignments is to formally beat the game of chess. Ill report back when I successfully land on the surface of Mars. Wish me luck everyone.

On Sunday, October 18, 2015, Martin Taylor mmt-csg@mmtaylor.net wrote:

[Martin Taylor 2015.10.18.23.09]

  On 2015/10/18 8:05 PM, PHILIP JERAIR > > YERANOSIAN wrote:
  Did you look at the videos I posted? Are you aware of

the work of Lloyd Pie? I would hardly consider him to be an
amateur in awareness…the poor soul.

I started the first one, but I got bored very quickly with his

misrepresentations, so I quit. “Climbing out of the primordial
sludge 5 to 8 million years ago”? Really?

It's irrelevant to my comment, anyway. No matter whether the writer

has a Ph.D. in Philosophy, or a Nobel in physiology, when it comes
to consciousness, we are all amateurs when it comes to
consciousness. We may be able to correlated moments of consciousness
with this or that aspect of our favourite model of how we work, but
who has a testable mechanism to produce it that fits people’s
experience? You expected a professional response from CSGnet? Why?

Martin
  On Sunday, October 18, 2015, Martin Taylor <mmt-csg@mmtaylor.net      > > > > wrote:
    [Martin Taylor

2015.10.18.19.59]

    On 2015/10/18 7:47 PM, PHILIP JERAIR YERANOSIAN wrote:

Martin, I didn’t expect an amateur response.

    Well, I guess you weren't expecting any response then. Everybody

is an amateur in awareness and consciousness.

    Martin


Dr Warren Mansell
Reader in Clinical Psychology
School of Psychological Sciences
2nd Floor Zochonis Building
University of Manchester
Oxford Road
Manchester M13 9PL
Email: warren.mansell@manchester.ac.uk

Tel: +44 (0) 161 275 8589

Website: http://www.psych-sci.manchester.ac.uk/staff/131406

Advanced notice of a new transdiagnostic therapy manual, authored by Carey, Mansell & Tai - Principles-Based Counselling and Psychotherapy: A Method of Levels Approach

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Check www.pctweb.org for further information on Perceptual Control Theory