11. What Is Consciousness?
Consciousness is the quality or state of being aware of something within oneself or an external object and the reflection in people’s brains.
Consciousness is the response not only to the existing stimulation, but also to the imagination. Even though you close your eyes and ears lying on the bed, you can still memorise or imagine the memories and replay, process, and imagine the past feelings. Usually people’s reflection on objects is a process of memorising, analysing, and processing them in a simple form of images.
For example, we may memorise things that happened long ago. Though they were far back, we still have vague memories of them, maybe blurry images, sounds, or smells.
There is no clear boundary between consciousness and subconsciousness, just like the bottom of the iceberg and the part above the water are integral parts of the whole. As time goes by, some things sink into the water or may be forgotten. Even so, their influence on us is permanent and remains in our brains. Hence, the author believes that human’s brains and consciousness mainly depend on their impression and affection on the external objects so as to memorise them, while images, sounds, and smells are the auxiliary means for memorisation. Sometimes or on most occasions, people would forget these auxiliary means. However, the impression and emotions in the brains are permanent, unless they are changed by some other objects.
The author thinks it as the basic mode of the generation of consciousness.
Humans are merely advanced computer, from their birth to death, memorising the effects that every experience has on the individual so that when similar things occur, the human brain will alert the body to react, which is zoologically called unconditioned reflex. People have made countless experiments, and the author merely explains this phenomenon by consciousness and subconsciousness.
The innumerable events during one’s life, no matter small or big, will exert effects on him. From a technical perspective, the brain needs to memorise the process and result of everything that has happened, and the sense organs like eyes, nose, ears, and mouth are collecting information all the time. How to record information and pick up the records to do reaction are problems to be solved; the solutions are that our brains record and permanently save things and the effects and emotional impression that these things exert on us. The scenes of the happenings, which are simply recorded, will get vague or be forgotten as time goes by, but emotions and impression will never be forgotten and can be picked up at any time. Why?
From the perspective of Chinese medicine Inner Canon of Yellow Emperor, a man has seven emotions and six sensory pleasures, which are the reflex and impression of the things that he is linked with. For example, one is delighted and joyful when he smells the fragrance of the Osmanthus. However, one will feel sick and disagreeable when he smells the stink of excrement.
Inner Canon of Yellow Emperor states that the seven emotions and six sensory pleasures, respectively, control a certain visceral organ. The author has not deeply studied it to make sure if it is true, but he only knows a little about it.
A computer spares quite a lot of space to store a movie but little to store data.
If each of the seven emotions and six sensory pleasures represents a variable, there are thirteen variables. The first time I felt pleased to smell the fragrance of the Osmanthus, I set the pleasure to 60 scores and provided no other variables; the score of the other twelve variables are 0.
Similarly, I set the sick for the stink of excrement to 50 scores because there are more disgusting objects than excrement. My first disagreeable impression on excrement is 50 scores and others are 0.
When we think of the Osmanthus next time, though we do not sell the Osmanthus or smell its fragrance, our subconsciousness will immediately tell us that the pleasure is 60 scores and others are 0 score and we will naturally have a pleasant mood and impression. As time goes by, we may forget when or where we have smelt the fragrance of the Osmanthus, but our 60 scores of pleasure will actually never be forgotten, unless we encounter other things and generate other emotions when we get to smell the Osmanthus again. For example, you go to play in a park once again and feel delighted to see the Osmanthus. This time you get your nose close to the Osmanthus to smell it and you get bitten by a bug. Then your impression on the Osmanthus may add 30 scores of fear and decrease the pleasure to 50 scores.
With a time lapse, you may gradually forget the displeasure, but the fear will never be forgotten, unless another one or more things occur and change your impression and feeling of the Osmanthus again.
Floyd has confirmed the generation mode of such consciousness again and again with countless cases.
The mode is of great significance to knowing a person or society. It helps us to know a person and his thoughts and awareness by quantitative and scientific analysis. Besides, I firmly believe that artificial robots with real emotions rather than simple machine programs can be generated.
Human ideologies are quite complicated and scientific.
From the above-mentioned, a man has 50 scores of pleasure, 30 scores of fear, and no other emotions on the Osmanthus. If he forgets the cause of the emotions, these emotions will sink into the ocean of consciousness and become subconsciousness.
To summarise, subconsciousness refers to consciousness that people know what to do and what they want to do, but do not know why they want to do it.
It sounds like the stories and plots in romantic novels. You like someone, but cannot tell why you like him or her.
As Floyd said, subconsciousness is like an iceberg, and consciousness is the tip of the iceberg above the water.
People open their eyes and see the whole world and all kinds of everything. Some people like these objects while others like those objects. Some objects are what you like and others are what you dislike. It’s not everything that you can entirely tell why you like it or why you dislike it.
Actually, you are not able to make it clear. Why? Your attitude toward a certain object is the total emotions you have linked with this object and its associated objects.
The subconsciousness can be classified into two categories. One is ego and the other one is super-ego, defined by Floyd. As far as the author is concerned, one is the inherent primitive drives and instincts, i.e., the attributes of animals. The other one is the accumulation of the impression on the happenings in the brains, i.e., the accumulation of reason and intellect.
Experience subconsciousness and animal subconsciousness are the two sources of human subconsciousness. The inherent fear of death, pleasure from sexual intercourse, desires for the opposite sex, desires for food and water are animal subconsciousness, so is the curiosity for the things to come.
The emotions for all the kinds of everything constitute a real human. If humans are not clear about it, they will ever be ignorant and they cannot explain or talk sense of everything that happens in the human society. If we cannot understand humans nor truly understand humans in a scientific way, we will not able to ascertain the objects of observation, but only to subjectively assume humans or borrow words of famous people to explain humans. That is like milking the bull.
Then we will not be able to figure out our work. The working approaches and performance will be no more than castle in the air.
Buddhism requires humans with great wisdom to have supernatural eyes, unsurpassed enlightenment, and wisdom. However, first of all, humans should be able to see through the appearance to perceive the essence. The author does not entirely agree on Floyd’s pan-sexualism nor has deeply studied sex. Floyd’s theoretical framework is based on innumerable cases, which is absolute truth.
The influential celebrity Lu Xun in China has ever flayed Floyd’s theory. Therefore, up to now, research on Floyd theory in the Chinese Mainland is regarded as heterodoxy, which is the biggest mistake that the Chinese have ever made. Since Chinese and Chinese leadership cannot discern people and see their nature, the author thinks Floyd’s theory, at least his basic theories, should be included in the required courses in high school. Research on subconsciousness and impulses help us explain many human phenomena, which cannot be explained by many other courses.