Category Archives: Consciousness

Consciousness is the state or quality of awareness, or, of being aware of an external object or something within oneself. It has been defined as: sentience, awareness, subjectivity, the ability to experience or to feel, wakefulness, having a sense of selfhood, and the executive control system of the mind.

An Ecology of Mind

Nora Bateson on Vimeo

If we understand a little bit of what we’re doing, maybe it will help us to find our way out of the maze of hallucinations that we have created around ourselves.
~Gregory Bateson (Bateson, p.475)

n Ecology of Mind is a portrait of Gregory Bateson, celebrated anthropologist, philosopher, author, naturalist, and systems theorist. His story is lovingly told by his youngest daughter, Nora, with footage from Gregory’s own films shot in the 1930s with his wife Margaret Mead in Bali and New Guinea, along with photographs, filmed lectures, and interviews.

Gregory surmised that definition was a limited, subjective way of explaining the properties of an object, which we do based on our relationship to it. A table for example, defined as a hard object, would only be so in relation to our softer hand when placed against the table. By re-analysing the world and understanding the relationship that all objects and living creatures have with their environments, we open up a new concept of definition and change our interaction with the world by understanding its complex ecology.

We support further ideas in epistemology, reviewing the direction of our persepectives and questioning our subjective experiences against the rigid and limited view of the mainstream. If knowledge is our objective, then we need to question every aspect of it.

Further Reading

steps-to-an-ecology-of-mind
Gregory’s collection of works and essays.

Steps to an Ecology of Mind is a collection of Gregory Bateson’s short works over his long and varied career. Subject matter includes essays on anthropology, cybernetics, psychiatry and epistemology.

The book begins with a series of metalogues, which take the form of conversations with his daughter Mary Catherine Bateson. The metalogues are mostly thought exercises with titles such as “What is an Instinct” and “How Much Do You Know.” In the metalogues, the playful dialectic structure itself is closely related to the subject matter of the piece.

Bateson applied cybernetics to the field of ecological anthropology and the concept of homeostasis. He saw the world as a series of systems containing those of individuals, societies and ecosystems. Within each system is found competition and dependency. Each of these systems has adaptive changes which depend upon feedback loops to control balance by changing multiple variables. Bateson believed that these self-correcting systems were conservative by controlling exponential slippage. He saw the natural ecological system as innately good as long as it was allowed to maintain homeostasis and that the key unit of survival in evolution was an organism and its environment.

Biography

Gregory Bateson was born in 1904 in Granchester, England. He completed a bachelor’s degree in natural history (1925) and a master’s degree (1930) in anthropology at St. John’s of Cambridge University. During the 1930s, Bateson conducted anthropological research in New Britain and New Guinea. (The latter studies were carried out in conjunction with his first wife, Margaret Mead.) During his early research, Bateson began to conceptually explore the idea that analogies of form and pattern may exist between apparently diverse fields of thought. In the following years, Bateson continued to investigate relationships between fields, and his work ranged through psychiatry, sociology, anthropology, art, biology, cybernetics, and politics. Bateson’s career expanded to include teaching, lecturing, and publishing numerous books and articles in addition to conducting research. In 1972, Bateson drew from his lectures and papers of the previous three decades to compile Steps to an Ecology of Mind, and the result is a book that exemplifies how ideas can be approached in an interdisciplinary way and the relationship between varied areas of focus. Gregory Bateson continued to explore new ways of approaching science and thought until he died in 1980. He leaves behind a legacy of curiosity and intelligent inquiry.

More information at the Institute for Intercultural Studies.

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Reality and the Extended Mind – Full Documentary

This is a video that explores the scientific evidence of the interconnected nature of consciousness. It features leading researchers and thinkers in the field of consciousness and psi phenomena including prominent researcher Dean Radin, Roger Nelson from the Global Consciousness Project, Robert Jahn and Brenda Dunne from the Princeton Engineering Anomalies Research Laboratory. Physician and author Larry Dossey and biologist Rupert Sheldrake..

his is a video that explores the scientific evidence of the interconnected nature of consciousness. It features leading researchers and thinkers in the field of consciousness and psi phenomena including prominent researcher Dean Radin, Roger Nelson from the Global Consciousness Project, Robert Jahn and Brenda Dunne from the Princeton Engineering Anomalies Research Laboratory. Physician and author Larry Dossey and biologist Rupert Sheldrake. Continue reading Reality and the Extended Mind – Full Documentary

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The Simulation Hypothesis

“I don’t know a single scientist who would disagree with the statement that the world is exceedingly genius, not just mathematical, not just beautiful, not just elegant, but the manifestation of something truly extraordinary.”
– Prof. Paul Davies

Ss everything an illusory simulation? Was the world created by a non-physical force that we can communicate with and possibly influence with our minds, thereby participating in the creation of our own reality? These are the grandiose existential questions central to this documentary, which introduces viewers to the concept of the Simulation Hypothesis. Continue reading The Simulation Hypothesis

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Alan Watts Meditation & Audio

“You are that vast thing that you see far,
far off with great telescopes.”

Sfter listening to Web of Life, by Dimitar Petrov (Man of No Ego) a music producer from Bulgaria, who focuses on sharing knowledge through music, I recorded some more of Alan Watts with calming background music to replace the usual psybient/psychill I use for concentration during work. I recommend listening to Man of No Ego’s album which you can stream below. Continue reading Alan Watts Meditation & Audio

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All it takes is 10 mindful minutes | Andy Puddicombe

We can’t change every little thing that
happens to us in life, but we can change
the way that we experience it.

Sndy Puddicombe very patiently describes an inner beauty we all possess. An ability to pause our perpetual personal schedule and become mindful of ourselves. If we can find just 10 minutes, this may be all we need to better prepare us for the unpredictable path that leads ahead. Continue reading All it takes is 10 mindful minutes | Andy Puddicombe

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Becoming Conscious: The Science of Mindfulness

This event is part of The Emerging Science of Consciousness Series, which brings together leading experts from various fields to discuss how the latest research is challenging our understanding of the very nature and function of consciousness in our daily lives.

Shis event is part of The Emerging Science of Consciousness Series, which brings together leading experts from various fields to discuss how the latest research is challenging our understanding of the very nature and function of consciousness in our daily lives. Continue reading Becoming Conscious: The Science of Mindfulness

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