Re: Posthuman

Brent Allsop (
Thu, 31 Jul 1997 10:45:21 -0600

Carl Feynman <> responded:

> In fact, why stop at stimulating the optic cortex? Stimulate the
> systems,o conscious and unconscious, that get output from the optic
> cortex.

Yes, this is what I was trying to say. I didn't say: "optic
cortex" I said "visual cortex". The one in the back of the brain that
finally produces our actual conscious visual awareness based on the
date fed to it from the eyes. The one that produces the visual spirit
world of our awareness that seems to us to be the real world beyond
our eyes but in actuality only models it. I also tried to mention
that this cortex could be expanded and enhanced to use much more
varied, diverse, higher resolution... qualia to do the conscious
representations as you kind of said here:

> It is well known to people who take hallucinogens that it is
> possible to perceive colors more saturated than any real percept, as
> well as images of far finer resolution. This indicates to me that
> there are internal representational channels in the visual system
> whose capabilities are *never* fully exploited by everyday life. If
> we could modulate them with meaningful signals, we could make the
> world both more beautiful and more informative.

Yes definitely! These "more saturated" colors must be
produced by the drugs affect on the primary visual cortex. Though,
the world wouldn't really be more informative, we would just have a
much more powerful ability to consciously model or be aware of much
more of it. Consciously seeing beyond infrared and ultraviolet is
much more than simply being able to detect those waves.
Electromagnetic radiation is only arbitrarily mapped to the particular
color sensations we experience and use to represent such in the world
that is our awareness. In order to see more, we must discover some
new qualia or visual sensation for the detectors to stimulate to
produce some different kind of awareness in the spirit world of our
conscious awareness or mind.

Brent Allsop