Death and the two systems of the mind
As indicated in chapter 6, humans operate and adapt by means of two very different systems of the emotion- processing mind, one linked directly to awareness, the other connected only through encoded images and unseen effects. Each system has distinctive properties -- selective areas of perception; processing capabilities; motivational tendencies and needs; resources, defences, and frame-related attitudes; ways of assessing, thinking and formulating; and overall adaptive capacities and inclinations. Not surprisingly, then, these two basic systems also differ in their experience and processing of death and its related impingements. These differences are best appreciated through an understanding of the evolutionary history of the awareness of death as a twofold danger situation -- one existential and the other predatory in nature.