Origins: Brain and Self Organization

By Karl Pribram | Go to book overview

AFTERWORD

By: Karl H. Pribram

As did Appalachian I, Appalachian II resolved, for me, certain hitherto intractable problems that plague the mind/brain relationship. In Appalachian I, the problem was: how can psychological processes reflect brain activity? Psychological processes such as language seem to be organized so differently from the recorded activity of the neurons and neural systems known to be critically involved. The answer came in the form of an identity at the subneuronal, synaptodendritic and cytoskeletal level. At that level, descriptions of the organization of the elementary neural process and descriptions of the organization of the elementary psychological process are identical: assuming that the brain is an information processing organ, the description of the organization of synaptodendritic cortical receptive fields is identical with the description of the organization of information processing in communication devices such as those that process language--e.g. telephony, and those that process images--e.g., tomography and television.

Appalachian II addressed a problem that emerges as a direct consequence of this identity. The form of the identity is symmetrical. The informational process is a two-way interaction: in a manner of speaking, the organization of the subneuronal process produces (causes) the organization of the elementary psychological process; but at the same time, this organization shapes (causes) the subneuronal process. The identity of organization, the information process involved, makes this way of speaking seem awkward and old fashioned, rooted in a pervasive Cartesian dualism. But it does call attention to the fact that identity implies symmetry.

Life and mind are not governed completely by the laws of symmetry. In fact, one might define an all important characteristic of life and mind is that symmetries become broken--especially time symmetry. In biology, birth, growth, procreation and death; in psychology, learning and memory, attention, intuition and thought are all time-symmetry breaking processes.

Prigogine's keynote addresses this issue and clarifies, for me, the "how" of time symmetry breaking. As I understand Prigogine's presentation (with help from Kunio Yasue and Mari Jibu), there are formulations in which spectral representations do not render both real and virtual "images" when Fourier transformed. Prigogine's discussion is restricted to certain quantum and/or classical systems driven by (non-self-adjoint) Hamiltonian operators (for quantum systems) and/or Liouville operators (for classical systems) which are "chosen" so that their time developments are kept contractive (i.e. loose information) and dissipative (i.e. loose energy). Thus, as Prigogine states in a letter to me in response to a question:

The difference between real and complex spectrum is very simple. Take the Hamiltonian in Hilbert space, it has real eigenvalues E1, E2...

Similarly the evolution operator U(t)=e-iHt has complex eigenvalues such as e-iE1t.

-707-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this book

This book has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this book

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Origins: Brain and Self Organization
Table of contents

Table of contents

Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
/ 718

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.