I am for you

the dimensions of consciousness

I see you seeing her, seeing him, seeing me

Being able to think about life from different perspectives is what we do. And as our brain grows, we gain the ability to see more perspectives.

Starting at conception, our human brain is only aware of our body’s own internal state, and we’re just using the brain’s most primitive functioning areas.

Then at about nine months, we begin to gain the ability to be aware of another individual’s state, as it relates to our own state. At this point, someone else’s feelings and experiences can become connected to our own feelings, using the brain’s limbic system.

Then a few months before we’re four years old, we begin to gain the ability to be aware of a third person’s state, as it relates to a second person’s state, as it relates to our own state.

And by the time we reach age 35 or so, and we’ve spent decades thoroughly exploring a full range of third-person perspectives, we finally start being able to think about things in the three dimensions (three spacial dimensions, or two space and one time dimension), with what I like to call systems theory thinking. It looks to be in the prefrontal cortex, though I’m not totally sure just yet.

Of course, the kinds of things that 35 year old humans (and all other ages as well) think about are almost infinitely diverse, from rap music, to robots, to romance, to the Riemann Hypotheses. So evolution really does have pretty much everything covered, in all of space, as long as us old folks are around to pay attention to what all the people (of all species) of the world have to say.

And, obviously, I’m definitely looking forward to reaching the age of 216 years old, when we get to start thinking in four dimensions. That’s really gonna be cool!


1 Comment»

  intelligence is the ability to see perspectives « Turil wrote @

[…] Also check out my earlier post on the dimensions of consciousness. […]

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