So momentarily were going to return to the basic story. I want to talk to you today about how your brain organizes your perceptions, and then I want to talk to you about how thats represented in mythology. The first thing Id like to point out, is we talked about the difference between Darwinian and Newtonian viewpoints a while back. One claim that you might make if you were Darwinian is that whatever your brain is adapted.
To is reality. That seems to be the central claim of Darwinian evolution, is that you cant define reality any more accurately than that which selects. I want to tell you about how I think the brain is organized. Then I want to show you, I hope, that the way fundamental narratives work can be mapped on to that brain structure.
To me that implies that theres something right about fundamental narratives, because otherwise why would they map onto the brain structures that have evolved to adapt us to the environment? People think about reality in objective terms, and they think about it as decomposable into tiny subunits. I think thats a limited viewpoint, a powerful but limited viewpoint.
I think its much more realistic to assume that whatever reality is, is more like a continual interplay of very, very complex patterns. I suppose you could make the case that those patterns are ultimately made out of particles, but even thats not exactly true because the particles have to be arrayed in space. Thats part of the atomic theory is that theres not just subatomic particles and atomic particles, but that theyre arrayed in space.
If theyre arrayed in space, that means the manner in which theyre arrayed can be informative. And if you reduce the phenoma to the particle, without taking into account the patterning of array of the particles, then there are levels and levels and levels of information that you lose. Those levels of information are they may not be relevant for our physical understanding.
Of the makeup of atomic and subatomic particles, but theyre definitely relevant to whether we can walk across the street safely. I would say if youre related to reality properly, the kind of information that youre processing is precisely the kind of information that allows you to cross the street properly; and to do all the other things during your days, your weeks, your months that you have to in order to stay alive and fundamentally, in some sense, propagate.
Alright, so well start with the neuropsychological argument. Now weve already established the idea that these little frames of reference, or maps, or stories, or whatever you call them Ill call them stories from hereon in, are little golddirected units. Theyre units of conception and emotion and perception and behavior; theyre little subpersonalities.
The subpersonality has an initial starting point and a destination point, and then it implements behaviors to transform the starting point into the destination point. Then you might say, well what forms these little subpersonalities? The answer to that is very complex, but one answer is: fundamental motivations. I arranged the fundamental motivations on this particular diagram pointing out that you can roughly consider motivations, as those that maintain you, and those that propagate.
Rabbi: savree maranun verabonun verobotay Baruch atah Adonai eloheynu melech haolam Boray p’ree hagafen Baruch atah Adonai eloheynu melech haolam Asher kid’shanu b’mitzvotav V’ratza vanu v’shabbat kaddsho.
B’ahavah oovratzone hincheelanu Zeekaron l’maahsay v’raysheet kee hoo yom T’cheelah l’mikraay kodesh Zaycher leetzeeat mitzrayim Kee vanu vachatah v’ohtahnu keydashta mekol haahmim V’shabbat kaddshcha b’ahavah oovratzone.
Hinchaltanu Baruch atah, Adonai m’kaddaysh haShabbat (TRAIN WHISTLE BLOWING) Name? Horowitz, Salomon. (MANY PEOPLE TALKING INDISTINCTLY).
Schneider, sarah. MAN 1: Birnbaum, Olga. (CHILDREN CRYING) (INDISTINCT TALKING) Over there. Over there! Kommen Sie doch. Isak Hudes.
Zucker, helena. MAN 2: Zucker, Helena. Hirsch, Salomon? Hirsch, Salomon. Hauptman, Chaim! Weisman! Weisman, Marcus!.
Feber, ludwig! MAN 3: Feber, Ludwig. Elsa Bauman. Josef Klein. MAN 4: Klein. Davidowich, Ignacy.
Paula biffer. Nadel, Rachela. Steiner, Gertruda. Steiner, Hilda. (GLOOMY SUNDAY PLAYING) (ORCHESTRA PLAYING).
(guests chattering indistinctly) (WHISPERING) MAITRE’D: Jerzy, you know who that man is? I don’t know. (WOMAN LAUGHING) (ORCHESTRA CONTINUES).