The Nature of Consciousness

Piero Scaruffi

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These are excerpts and elaborations from my book "The Nature of Consciousness"

Biological Epistemology

Solving a problem consists in visualizing it correctly. In his opinion the brain produces many different visualizations of the problem until one "fits". Then the solution is obvious. The brain produces a large number of ideas. Those that are "useless" are weakened; those that are useful are reinforced. The US psychologist Donald Campbell ("Natural selection as an epistemological model", 1970), viewed a selectionist process (blind variation and selective retention) at work in all the brain functions, from perception (recognizing that something is something) to problem solving. At all levels the brain does not really "know" what to do: it just guesses, and the correct guesses are rewarded. Thinking originates from a population of guesses that evolve based on their usefulness or uselessness.


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