Your inner life is your outer life. Your second life is your first life. Your fantasies are your reality.
One of the universal aspects of human cognition is we are all magical thinkers. No matter how rationalistic you may try to make yourself be, we form and retain information in patterns of association, sympathy, relationship.
Yes, a person who avoids this is pretty dull. They have also established something very interesting. Perception is not primary. Your brain won’t allow perception to override it’s other processes. What do you think of this?
Sounds like a survival mechanism.
I think I see what I believe.
It is why we suffer change blindness among other things. Inference overrides perception, and emotion overrides analysis. You react before you become consciously aware of anything. You begin to have an emotional response before you even know what you are looking at.
And you believe what you “are…”
Even in my case, this is true despite my neurological differences. They have recently identified a detail that distinguishes aspergers syndrome (my own condition) from autism in general. In autism, they are still advancing the notion of regional connectivity deficits, but in aspergers syndrome, they have found that in the left hemisphere this is not true. Not only is it not true, but in aspergers syndrome the individual shows greater connectivity than even a neurotypical person. To explain what this means about belief, all of it… I think I have ranged too far, so maybe this will help…
If you are focused on particulars, getting your own needs and desires met, your body and brain triggers a specific genetic signalling pathway that we evolved to allow us to survive being segregated from a group. It could be called the rogue human model. We have greater resistance to bacterial infection like we might experience if we suffered wounds and an increased sensitivity to stress hormones. We become hyper vigilant. It’s a feast or famine existence.
Well, I choose to be a hermit, a hermetic lifestyle… There are pleasures in that. It can be very attractive, even addictive.
The other mode, the other genetic pathway makes us more resistant to viruses and more emotionally resilient, less subject to pain, either physical or emotional, but also less prone to extremes of stimulation. Things become more drab, normalized, less motivating. And in general, this second genetic pathway makes for a healthier human being. There is more survival value in group integration than the alternative just genetically and chemically speaking. This is without considering objective factors. What we consider normal day to day experience.
Remember I mentioned earlier that inference takes precedence neurologically over actual perception? Well, our primary mode of inference is social. Our bodies experience the most efficient function, come closest to functioning optimally, when we feel socially in tune with our herd, our communities. We even experience stress if we have to rely only on social surrogates. Pets would be an example of social surrogates. Instinctively our brains keep reminding us they are not human.
May I say that I think not everyone is a herd-beast? Everyone is social. Not everyone is a creature of habit, constrained by instinct. Is that objectionable to say?
I equate people with animals, and tigers are social only when needing a mate. Tigers are social even when not needing a mate. They have a whole array of behaviours that serve specifically to help them avoid problems with their own kind or navigate them when they do occur. Territorial marking would be an example.
That’s the one. They are chiefly solitary. Strongly territorial though adaptive drives do compromise that.
Remember my reference to the right hemisphere and its function?
The right hemisphere is the region of the brain concerned primarily with global scanning, regional vigilance, and is also primarily responsible for worry. Our primary instinct is to check for signs of social warning, distress or hostility. In other human beings we are more sensitive to negative social signals than positive ones.
The left hemisphere is primarily anti-social. The left hemisphere concerning itself more with the quality of food we are tasting, or the degree of pain we are experiencing in a more objective sense, loosely speaking. In fact, in my own case, and a way in which I differ from normal individuals, is the region specifically used for recognizing human faces, and the state they are signalling, is non-responsive to that information. I have no instinctive sense of how I am being looked at. This doesn’t mean I don’t need that information. I do very much. My instinct just doesn’t provide it.
Your thoughts are welcome. Be well friends.