Do we dream less as we get older?

The origins of the imperative, "know thyself", are lost in the sands of time, but the age-old examination of human consciousness continues here.

Re: Do we dream less as we get older?

Postby Aventador » Tue Jun 22, 2021 5:09 pm

I think you better call Dan~, iambiguous, I have a real treasure trove here.

Holy hell.

Unless, of course, I am on the infamous 'ignore list.'

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Re: Do we dream less as we get older?

Postby MagsJ » Tue Jun 22, 2021 6:14 pm

_
I’ve been dreaming more regularly.. after over a year of not, but I couldn’t tell you what they’re about, as I don’t prescribe to the school-of-thought of trying to remember One’s dreams.. coz I’m too busy sleeping. Lucid dreaming is obviously a different matter altogether..
The possibility of anything we can imagine existing is endless and infinite.. - MagsJ
I haven't got the time to spend the time reading something that is telling me nothing, as I will never be able to get back that time, and I may need it for something at some point in time.. Huh! - MagsJ
You’re suggestions and I, just simply don’t mix.. like oil on water, or a really bad DJ - MagsJ
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Re: Do we dream less as we get older?

Postby iambiguous » Wed Jun 23, 2021 4:13 pm

Blindsight: the strangest form of consciousness
David Robson at the BBC Future website

Just how many of our decisions occur out of our awareness, even when we have the illusion of control? And if the conscious mind is not needed to direct our actions, then what is its purpose? Why did we evolve this vivid internal life, if we are almost “zombies” acting without awareness?


This is always something that I come back to time and time again. I merely focus in more on consciousness as it is created to evolve over time in a particular world understood in a particular way. And the manner in which -- blind or sighted -- it is shaped and molded by others when we are children. And noting the manner in which, depending on the experiences that we have -- or just as importantly don't have -- can predispose "I" in any number of directions. And then acknowledging how this "sense of self" is fabricated and refabricated existentially from the cradle to the grave given so many factors/variables that we don't either fully understand or control.

But why stop there? Why not admit in turn that "I" is somehow intertwined in all that we do not know -- cannot even begin to imagine -- about the existence of existence itself? And that's just on this infinitesimally insignificant speck of a planet in vastness of what some argue is an infinity of universes they call the multiverse.

“These cases open a window into parts of the brain that are normally not visible,” says Marco Tamietto, who is based at Tilburg University. “They offer a view to functions that are difficult to observe – that are normally silent.”


Only here the focus is still on the brain itself. The chemical and neurological interactions in those like Daniel able to create a consciousness that may or may not be fully pinned down by science. And then if science encompasses it fully in the either/or world what then will philosophers and theologians make of that in coming to grips with what now eludes me: a meaning and purpose that links all of us together in one or another TOE. Or God or Goddess. A theory/Creator that can then be connected to the "for all practical purposes" components of our interaction with others.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: Do we dream less as we get older?

Postby Maia » Thu Jun 24, 2021 1:17 am

MagsJ wrote:_
I’ve been dreaming more regularly.. after over a year of not, but I couldn’t tell you what they’re about, as I don’t prescribe to the school-of-thought of trying to remember One’s dreams.. coz I’m too busy sleeping. Lucid dreaming is obviously a different matter altogether..


Lucid dreaming is a very interesting subject, and I've attempted to induce it a number of times. The best technique, according to the literature, is to keep a dream diary, which I did for many years. I'm not sure I achieved any proper lucid dreaming, though I've certainly had dreams in which I anticipate what's about to happen, and then it happens (no big surprise, of course, since it's my own dream).
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Re: Do we dream less as we get older?

Postby Maia » Thu Jun 24, 2021 9:54 am

iambiguous wrote:What Dreams Are Like When You’re Blind
By Cari Romm
In New York magazine

The congenitally blind people in the Sleep Medicine study also tended to have more nightmares, a finding that supports the idea that bad dreams are a sort of rehearsal for real-life threats. Children, who are generally more vulnerable than adults, also tend to have more frightening dreams. Similarly, it’s possible that the disadvantage posed by a lack of sight spurs the brain to prepare for disaster scenarios more than it otherwise would.


Again, the truly profound [and, eventually, problematic] manner in which the biological and the experiential can be played out in so many different ways for so many different people. The part where some things seems applicable to all of us and the part where, however hard we attempt to communicate our own dream experiences, there are some barriers beyond which we cannot go. Here we can only come to an agreement about what the dreams seem to be telling us. I merely suggest in turn that we steer clear of those who claim to be experts in interpreting dreams when they have themselves have almost no real understanding of our own situation. You can be blind or sighted and have very similar dreams. Just experienced with a different set of senses. But they can never be experienced and understood in the same way.

And for Edison, the most vivid nightmares, like his happier dreams, are primarily auditory. “I worked in radio for a long time, so I have the typical radio dream,” he says: “The record is ending, and I can’t get to it, and there’s dead air.”


So, is that something that you yourself can relate to? And what if a dream construed to be a nightmare by some is experienced by others as being anything but. Still, what I am doing now is prompting myself before I fall asleep to notice sensual cues that are not visual. I'm curious to see if that is something that can actually be enhanced.


Re-reading these last few pages I notice that you asked a question here, which is exactly what I requested, of course, so here's my answer.

I can't actually remember the last time I had what I would call a nightmare, that is, something that actually induces fear. This is not to say, though, that I don't have dreams with negative emotions attached to them. A case in point being the dream I described right at the beginning of this thread, of me crawling through rubble. Not only was it physically painful, with my hands and knees getting cut open, but it also had an overwhelming sense of desolation. As always, it's the emotional content of a dream that sticks in one's mind.

The sense of desolation I felt in that dream is very rare for me, which is why I remember that one so well. In terms of other dreams with what might be called "negative" emotions, I'm much more likely to have ones in which I'm trying to find someone, or something, but it's forever out of reach, in one way or another. I definitely wouldn't call these nightmares, though, because they are often quite interesting, with a sense of purpose.
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Re: Do we dream less as we get older?

Postby iambiguous » Thu Jun 24, 2021 4:19 pm

Blindsight: the strangest form of consciousness
David Robson at the BBC Future website

Unravelling the mind

Consciousness is so deeply intertwined with everything we do, that many scientists had previously believed it would be impossible to study. How can you pick apart the rich fabric of our minds to find the one thread that gives rise to the vivid sense of awareness, of feeling and “being” and experiencing the world, without unravelling everything else around it?


And yet incredibly enough in places like this there is an endless procession of men and women who boldly go where hundreds and hundreds have already gone before: to the next TOE.

God or No God.

But isn't it ultimately science that we turn to to test them. Okay, tell us how you think the world works. Your God or No God spiritual path, your ideology or dogma. Your philosophical realism or political idealism. And, here, being either blind or sighted there are really only those who are able to test and to experiment with your assumptions/conclusions in order to make predictions that either do or do not come true that count. And that can then be replicated or not replicated by others. I merely suggest that any number of objectivists among us believe what they do because the belief in and of itself is what counts. What they believe could be practically anything. And, for all too many, believing it is demonstration enough.

Ah, but then the particularly mysterious states of mind explored by those like Oliver Sachs and by those examining Daniel. Could fathoming his "world" bring us closer to understanding our own?

Daniel, whose name has been changed for this article and is known in the literature simply as DB, offered some of the first clues. “What you want to do is to look at something that is as close to consciousness as possible, but which is lacking that specific quality, that subjective experience,” says Christopher Allen at Cardiff University. “And that’s what blindsight gives you. The participant is still perceiving, but they lack awareness of perception.”


Okay, so how then is this related to the subconscious and the unconscious mind? And how for those born blind are these states of mind...different?

I still recall the most vivid example of my own mind perceiving while lacking an awareness of the perception itself. It was when I first became involved with a woman named Supannika. If there really is such a thing as "soul mates" she was mine. I remember the first day we shared that was simply bursting at the seams with fulfillment. I drove from her apartment near the Pimlico race track to my apartment in Lauraville. A good 8 to 10 miles. But here's the thing. At the time I reached Herring Run Park, it suddenly dawned on me that my mind had been entirely focused on her. In other words, I drove all those miles as though on automatic pilot. I stopped at all the lights, made all the left and right turns etc, but it was as though my brain itself had done it.

It completely astonished me. And I've never experienced anything quite like it again. Although in somewhat a similar vein, I remember reading books to my daughter. Books I had read a billion times. And there were "sequences" then when I would be thinking about something totally unrelated to the book and then suddenly realize that I was thinking about that and reading the book at the same time.

The human mind? Tell me about it.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: Do we dream less as we get older?

Postby iambiguous » Thu Jun 24, 2021 5:20 pm

Maia wrote:I can't actually remember the last time I had what I would call a nightmare, that is, something that actually induces fear. This is not to say, though, that I don't have dreams with negative emotions attached to them. A case in point being the dream I described right at the beginning of this thread, of me crawling through rubble. Not only was it physically painful, with my hands and knees getting cut open, but it also had an overwhelming sense of desolation. As always, it's the emotional content of a dream that sticks in one's mind.


For many [blind or sighted], if their dream involves them feeling physical pain and results in a feeling of desolation, they might describe that as a nightmare. Although, sure, a nightmare as others understand it involves more specific experiences in the dream. You are being chased down a road by a bloodthirsty mob hellbent on killing you. They catch up to you and are attacking you viciously. You wake up with a feeling of intense dread. And then relief that it was only a dream.

I don't have those sort of dreams myself. Instead, for me, the "nightmarish" part comes in recognizing the parts of my life that were as, sad to say, they actually were. And how, had things been different, my life itself might have been so much more rewarding. In other words, it's like my brain keeps reminding me that the gap between the life I did live and the life I might have lived instead is my own fault.

But, again, that sort of thing would seem to have nothing to do my being sighted.

Maia wrote:The sense of desolation I felt in that dream is very rare for me, which is why I remember that one so well. In terms of other dreams with what might be called "negative" emotions, I'm much more likely to have ones in which I'm trying to find someone, or something, but it's forever out of reach, in one way or another. I definitely wouldn't call these nightmares, though, because they are often quite interesting, with a sense of purpose.


Again, for me, how can one's dreams not be profoundly intertwined in the life that they live? If, overall, someone's life is bursting at the seams with things that fulfil them, their dreams are likely to reflect that in turn. Or, if, for whatever reason, their life is bursting at the seams with things that seem ever to be tormenting them, won't their dreams reflect that instead?

But that's me. My preoccupation with all things dasein when it comes to our subjective and subjunctive reactions to the world around us.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: Do we dream less as we get older?

Postby Maia » Fri Jun 25, 2021 11:37 am

iambiguous wrote:
Maia wrote:I can't actually remember the last time I had what I would call a nightmare, that is, something that actually induces fear. This is not to say, though, that I don't have dreams with negative emotions attached to them. A case in point being the dream I described right at the beginning of this thread, of me crawling through rubble. Not only was it physically painful, with my hands and knees getting cut open, but it also had an overwhelming sense of desolation. As always, it's the emotional content of a dream that sticks in one's mind.


For many [blind or sighted], if their dream involves them feeling physical pain and results in a feeling of desolation, they might describe that as a nightmare. Although, sure, a nightmare as others understand it involves more specific experiences in the dream. You are being chased down a road by a bloodthirsty mob hellbent on killing you. They catch up to you and are attacking you viciously. You wake up with a feeling of intense dread. And then relief that it was only a dream.

I don't have those sort of dreams myself. Instead, for me, the "nightmarish" part comes in recognizing the parts of my life that were as, sad to say, they actually were. And how, had things been different, my life itself might have been so much more rewarding. In other words, it's like my brain keeps reminding me that the gap between the life I did live and the life I might have lived instead is my own fault.

But, again, that sort of thing would seem to have nothing to do my being sighted.

Maia wrote:The sense of desolation I felt in that dream is very rare for me, which is why I remember that one so well. In terms of other dreams with what might be called "negative" emotions, I'm much more likely to have ones in which I'm trying to find someone, or something, but it's forever out of reach, in one way or another. I definitely wouldn't call these nightmares, though, because they are often quite interesting, with a sense of purpose.


Again, for me, how can one's dreams not be profoundly intertwined in the life that they live? If, overall, someone's life is bursting at the seams with things that fulfil them, their dreams are likely to reflect that in turn. Or, if, for whatever reason, their life is bursting at the seams with things that seem ever to be tormenting them, won't their dreams reflect that instead?

But that's me. My preoccupation with all things dasein when it comes to our subjective and subjunctive reactions to the world around us.


I emailed you yesterday, by the way, about a matter that I wish to discuss in private.
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Re: Do we dream less as we get older?

Postby iambiguous » Fri Jun 25, 2021 11:47 pm

Maia wrote:
I emailed you yesterday, by the way, about a matter that I wish to discuss in private.


I just emailed what you had requested. I had to compose it myself [rather than replying to an email from you] so I hope I did it right. Let me know if you did not receive it. I made a copy so I can send it again
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: Do we dream less as we get older?

Postby iambiguous » Sat Jun 26, 2021 6:45 pm

Blindsight: the strangest form of consciousness
David Robson at the BBC Future website

One of the first tasks was to test exactly what blindsight patients are capable of without their conscious visual awareness – and the results have been quite remarkable. Of particular interest has been the fact that they can sense emotion: when presented with faces, they can tell whether it is happy or sad, angry or surprised, and they even start to unconsciously mimic the expressions. “Even though they did not report anything at a conscious level, we could show a change in attitude, a synchronisation of emotional expressions to the pictures in their blind field,” says Tamietto, who has worked extensively with Weiskrantz.


It seems that just as we go deeper and deeper into our exploration of the universe and encounter ever more puzzling mysteries, the same is the case in our exploration of the human mind. The problem however is that very, very few of us are a part of the scientific communities engaged in either task. So what we believe about the universe or the human mind is only going to be that much further removed from whatever the truth actually is. In fact, some speculate that the human mind itself may not even be capable of grasping a full comprehension of either.

And, let's face it, blind or sighted, human emotion can only be that much more intertwined in the subconscious and unconscious "realities" that our brain "works" with. And create.

Besides mirroring expressions, they also show physiological signs of stress when they see a picture of a frightened face. “The plan for the future is to try to train them to pay attention to bodily reactions,” says Tamietto. It might be helpful to notice if they are in danger, for instance. “They can use the bodily changes to understand what’s going on in the world – as an indication that there is something interesting or problematic.”


Now, in a sense, we get down to the nitty-gritty. There is how we perceive the world with an untrained mind and how in understanding the mind more and more, it can be trained to perceive the world differently. Better perhaps? That ever mysterious phenomenon that revolves around the psycho-somatic world. And how the world of those blind from birth, the world of Daniel and the world of those who were always sighted might overlap.

Or not?
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: Do we dream less as we get older?

Postby iambiguous » Mon Jun 28, 2021 4:10 pm

Blindsight: the strangest form of consciousness
David Robson at the BBC Future website

In 2008, Tamietto and Weiskrantz’s team put another blindsight patient through the most gruelling test yet. Unlike Daniel, he was blind across the whole of his visual field, and normally walked with a white cane. But the team took away his cane and then loaded a corridor with furniture that might potentially trip him up, before asking him make his way to the other side. “Despite saying he wasn’t able to see, we saw him shooting by on his very first attempt,” says Tamietto. You can watch it for yourself, on the video below.


Unfortunately, the article informs us, "this video is no longer available". Which is unfortunate because it would illustrate the text in a way that words alone just don't accomplish.

In other words, how is this even possible? Could he in fact actually see? Was he perhaps clicking as Maia described above. Did they ask him how he had accomplished it

The closest we get to that is this:

Importantly, the participant claimed that not only was he not aware of having seen anything; he was not even aware of having moved out of the way of the objects. He insisted he had just walked straight down the hallway. According to Beatrice de Gelder, who led the work, he was “at a loss to explain or even describe his actions”.


Back again to that machine that doesn't exist that would allow us to be inside his head and experience what he had himself experience as he experienced it. Lacking that, what is there to make of something like this?

So, back to the parts that those like Oliver Sacks came upon in exploring the mind/body interaction at its most enigmatic...

Only in very rare circumstances do they come close to being aware of what they are seeing. For instance, one subject was able to distinguish movement in fast, high-contrast films; he described it as being like “a black shadow moving against a completely black background” – a “sense of knowing” that there was something beyond. But even then, he could not describe the content itself, meaning that his experience lacked almost everything we would normally associate with vision. “There’s a lot of controversy about whether those reports truly reflect visual experiences,” says Kentridge.


And what is no doubt sustaining this controversy is that, from "subject" to "subject", there are going to be any number of gaps between each individual's situation and all that we still don't know about the mind-boggling anomalies that pop up in regard to those like Daniel. The biological imperatives manifesting themselves in ways that we are simply not yet able to fully explain.

Then the even "spookier" experiences of those, blind or sighted, who seem to "know" things that connect them to, among other things, spiritual and religious realities that to those like me simply do not exist anymore.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: Do we dream less as we get older?

Postby iambiguous » Tue Jun 29, 2021 4:40 pm

Blindsight: the strangest form of consciousness
David Robson at the BBC Future website

Reversible blindness

Of all the questions these studies have posed, the most pressing has been why? What causes the conscious and unconscious to decouple so spectacularly? Tellingly, all the blindsight subjects had suffered damage to a region known as V1, at the back of the head, suggesting that it is this region that normally projects the stream of images into our awareness.


Of course "why" here can be approached from different directions. On the one hand, there is the part that science is attempting to understand. Why does the brain create conditions like this? Is it possible [through science] to explain how in a truly definitive manner it happens to some but not to others? Can the answers to these questions lead to medical breakthroughs that do reverse blindness? Even for those who were born blind?

Then the "why?" that, for some, is the most problematic -- and far more fascinating? -- of all. The teleological "why?" In other words, for those who believe in or who are on a religious path given the existential trek from the cradle to the grave, how do conditions like these fit into the "big picture"? One intertwined on either a God or a No God spiritual path.

For now though, the first "why?" is the main thrust here.

To test their ideas, scientists can use a form of non-invasive brain stimulation that disrupts different brain regions, in an attempt to induce a reversible form of blindsight in healthy participants. Keen to know how it feels, I recently took part in one of those experiments at Allen’s lab in Cardiff, UK.

The technique is called “transcranial magnetic stimulation”, which uses a strong magnetic field to scramble the neural activity underneath the skull. “The advantage is that you don’t have to cut someone’s head open to demonstrate the same behavioural characteristics as clinical blindsight,” Allen told me before the experiment.


Then of course it comes down to the possibilities that may become available in the medical field to reverse blindness going all the way back to those who were born blind. That's got to be the most visceral reaction among those who are: what might be possible...and what is likely to never be possible?
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: Do we dream less as we get older?

Postby iambiguous » Wed Jun 30, 2021 4:34 pm

Blindsight: the strangest form of consciousness
David Robson at the BBC Future website

Through studies such as this, Allen has found tentative evidence that the visual information is funnelled through the “lateral geniculate nucleus”, deep in the centre of the brain – a bypass around V1 that allows the information to be processed unconsciously in areas involved in emotion or movement.


Here of course I'm like most of you: taking their word for it. There's how the brain functions to create the conditions that the scientists study above and there's how I lack both the education and the background that would allow me even to ask sophisticated questions. Plus I'm not blind.

There's only imagining how medical science, in grappling to understand the parts "deep in the centre of the brain", might someday come up with a breakthrough that will, well, we just don't know.

Thus:

Eventually, the researchers may even understand how the brain creates visual consciousness itself – and why V1 is so crucial. One idea is that consciousness relies on communication to and from many areas of the brain – and maybe V1 is working as a hub that helps orchestrate that broadcast.


The V1: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Abducens_nerve

Here of course the relationship between human consciousness and vision. For those who have never seen at all...is their state of consciousness different from those who have always seen? Are there chemical and neurological interactions in their brain creating a sense of reality that those who are sighted can only grasp up to a point? Or is the difference not of any significant degree?
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: Do we dream less as we get older?

Postby iambiguous » Thu Jul 01, 2021 4:35 pm

Blindsight: the strangest form of consciousness
David Robson at the BBC Future website

Picking apart the experience may also reveal further clues about the power of unconscious mind. To understand how, imagine that you are part of a strange puppet show. You have been blindfolded, and your limbs are tied to invisible strings. Every so often, they are tugged here or there by a hidden puppet master, leading you through a complicated dance. To the audience, it looks like you are in full control of your actions, but you don’t have the foggiest idea of what you’ve just done.

That puppet show is essentially what happens when someone with blindsight navigates their way past obstacles – with the non-conscious mind acting as the puppet master. “It shows that awareness isn’t the whole story,” says Tamietto. “Very often we believe we have decided something, but our brain has made the decision for us before that – in many ways, and in many contexts.”


In all honesty, it is not really clear to me what important point is being conveyed here about blindsight. As it is experienced by those like Daniel...or for those having participated in the experiment. And since it involves components of the subconscious and unconscious mind, is it even possible to understand it fully? Since I can't help but be aware of being blindfolded and having my limbs tied, I can't imagine experiencing this strange puppet show other than in being aware of it. Far more mysterious perhaps is the part where some argue that nature itself is pulling all of the strings. And that, to the extent that those born blind, those who go blind and those always having been sighted experience anything at all it is only as they ever could have.

And again, if only the video was available so that we could watch Daniel navigate the obstacles and were able ourselves to ask him questions about the blind side.

Juha Silvanto at the University of Westminster agrees: “Consciousness is just a summary of all the information coming in, but the fact the subconscious can guide behaviour suggests that elaborate processing is going on without us being aware of it.” Indeed, some philosophers have gone as far as to wonder whether we could be little more than “zombies” acting on mostly unconscious impulses.


Here though this can suggest for some that the subconscious mind is somehow attuned to what they construe to be a spiritual or a religious understanding of the world around us. And if the subconscious and unconscious mind is guiding our behaviors then what does that tell us about holding people responsible for what they choose to do when assuming some measure of free will?

Okay, we have free will...but we are still little more than nature's zombies?

One thing for sure however: the objectivists among us will never go down that path. Let alone mine.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: Do we dream less as we get older?

Postby iambiguous » Fri Jul 02, 2021 6:14 pm

Blindsight: the strangest form of consciousness
David Robson at the BBC Future website

This...begins to cast doubt on some long-held assumptions about the very nature, and purpose, of consciousness. After all, it is by no means certain that other animals have a rich inner life like us, so it must have emerged for some reason. Previously, psychologists had proposed that we have a kind of “spotlight of attention” that sweeps over our vision, and when it lands on an object, the object pops into consciousness. In this way, our heightened awareness helps highlight the most important parts of a scene, giving us the chance to respond.


Here, of course, I eventually get around to the part where even though we may never fully grasp the biological/medical aspects of human consciousness, whether one is born blind, becomes blind or was never blind, there are components of whatever any of us believe that we are conscious of which are far more problematic in communicating to others. Just because we are conscious of something doesn't necessarily make what we convey it to be true. And, even here, we must assume that our own conscious understanding of our own particular world reality is autonomous. That we choose to believe what we do about something given that we were free to believe something else instead.

With the human species, social, political and economic memes come into play in a manner that is basically completely unknown to almost all other species.

Except Robert Kentridge at the University of Durham has evidence to suggest this too may be wrong. His insight came when he was talking to a blindsight subject in between some of the basic visual tests, in which he flashed different images at different parts of the blind spot. The subject had said that he thought he would do better if we were told where, in the blind spot, the image would appear. “It seemed very strange,” says Kentridge – since they have no awareness of what is in their blind spots, they shouldn’t be able to focus their attention there. “It’s as if you were trying to direct attention around the back of head – you shouldn’t be able to do it,” he says.


Again, the mystery deepens. Something happens. But it shouldn't happen. So, is it happening because it is a mystery? Or is it happening because of something you hadn't thought of? Or because of subterfuge or fraud?

And not blind from birth or going blind in both eyes...but blind only in spots. Able to see but not as others are able to see. A condition that has a name...an affliction called being blindsighted.

And all we know is that medical science will continue to explore it in order to understand it more fully. And to understand what it all might mean in regard to human consciousness itself.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: Do we dream less as we get older?

Postby iambiguous » Fri Jul 02, 2021 11:08 pm

From an email to Maia:

"Summerism, Paganism and The Wicker Man" by Rupert White

http://www.artcornwall.org/features/Wic ... er_Man.htm

"The Wicker Man is, ethically, highly ambiguous and much of its power comes from the tension set up between the two male protagonists, which remains unresolved. Sergeant Howie, who embodies the Christian establishment, is contrasted with the more progressive and charismatic Lord Summerisle, and appears repressed and frigid; trapped by a narrow morality of the no-sex-before-marriage kind. Ultimately Howie turns out to be the more humane of the two men, however.

"The film is also a fascinating and unique depiction of a community that has adopted paganism as a way of life. In places this portrayal is clunky, but overall it works: it works in the sense that it is attractive and plausible, and in its use of motifs from folklore and history, it is also recognisable.

"In fact in his discussions with Howie, Lord Summerisle explains that the islanders adopted their pagan practices after his grandfather introduced fruit farming and apple-growing on the island. Thus, strictly speaking what we are witnessing in The Wicker Man is not a traditional form of spiritual practice, but a syncretic Neo-paganism - the modern creation of one man - and though not given a name, it could be called 'Summerism'"

Of course in the film Sgt Howie is literally burned alive at the end along with many animals. So, I can certainly see why many Pagans might be repulsed by this particular community's ethos.


This always fascinates me because it takes the idea of being "blind" all the way out to its broadest interpretation. Not only are those who do not share one's own "ism" seen to be blind to the truth, but even within the "ism" itself there can be these ferocious squabbles over the right way in which to both understand it and to live it.

I was once smack dab in the middle of this as a political activist. But it can revolve around religious and spiritual narratives as well.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: Do we dream less as we get older?

Postby iambiguous » Sat Jul 03, 2021 7:09 pm

Giving blind people sight illuminates the brain’s secrets
By Rhitu Chatterjee at Science Magazine

NEW DELHI—Manoj Kumar Yadav came into this world with cataracts. In developed countries, a simple surgery cures this disabling eye affliction within the first few months of life. But like the vast majority of people in India, Yadav was born in a village, with limited access to health care. His parents are poor and uneducated. They didn’t even realize their infant son was blind until he began to bump into things while crawling. Years later, when regional doctors examined Yadav, they told him he would never see. “So we gave up,” recalls Yadav, now 22. “We thought there was no point in running around anymore trying to find treatment.”

Then in 2011, a team of eye specialists from New Delhi visited Yadav’s village in Uttar Pradesh state. They screened him and other blind children and kindled hope that Yadav might someday be able to see after all. That August, he and his father took a 13-hour train journey to India’s capital. Here at the Dr. Shroff Charity Eye Hospital, a surgeon excised his cataract-ridden lenses and slipped in synthetic ones in their place.


Leaving aside the outrageous political realities embedded in a world where literally millions of children must endure the horrors of global poverty embedded in a global economy where some ever and always get the very, very best while others barely manage to subsist at all -- even die -- there's the question that is pertinent to this thread: blindness in all of its many individual manifestations.

In fact, there are medical conditions related to blindness at birth [or at a very young age] such that medical science has not yet perfected a way to reverse the condition. So for those like Maia the question still remains: what about my condition?

Any particular individual afflicted with hundreds and hundreds of different medical conditions are always in the same boat here: in my lifetime will medical science find a cure...or a way to reverse their own particular condition. Then the part where this is accomplished but they are not among the lucky few who fortuitously happened to be living in a part of the world where they can actually afford to have the procedure.

And then what most of us here cannot cannot even begin to imagine:

When the doctors removed the bandages a day later, Yadav’s world was filled with light, and shapes that to him were inscrutable. He couldn’t tell people from objects, or where one thing ended and another began. His brain, deprived of information from his eyes for 18 years, didn’t know what to make of the flood of visual stimuli. But over the coming months, his brain gradually learned to interpret the signals it was receiving from his eyes, and the blurry and confusing world began to come into focus.


A whole new reality for him. A whole new world. Then back to the tricky part. Okay, he can now see the world around him. And in some ways that changed his frame of mind about things, but in other ways it did not.

Now that would be a fascinating discussion for someone like me.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: Do we dream less as we get older?

Postby Dan~ » Sun Jul 04, 2021 7:25 am

iambiguous wrote:
Maia wrote:I've already asked you once to stop posting on my thread. If you want to talk about that stuff, start your own.

And just to make it very clear, the reason I stopped talking to you was because of your quite shocking reaction, as if I had wronged you in some way, when I informed you that I wanted to continue our conversation wholly in private, by email (which I don't any more, by the way).

Furthermore, since you have no actual questions, what's the point of going on about it, going round in circles?


As I noted above...

Now that I'm interested in it, it becomes one more facet of my own exploration into the manner in which I construe human identity as an existential manifestation of dasein. As with all the other subjects on all of the other threads I have begun here at ILP. And since I have created many, many posts on this thread in which to further that exploration, it never occurred to me to start a whole other thread.


So, no, I'm not going to start a new thread. That, from my frame of mind, would be ridiculous.

Look, if you want, contact Carleas and ask him to lock the thread. That way I would be unable to respond further with my own insights here. Again, there are just so many things in this world that can become "beyond my control".

Also, ask yourself what prompts you to react to my posts as you do. I have my own suspicions, but I will keep them to myself.


Please stop posting in this thread.
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Re: Do we dream less as we get older?

Postby iambiguous » Sun Jul 04, 2021 6:53 pm

Dan~ wrote:
iambiguous wrote:
Maia wrote:I've already asked you once to stop posting on my thread. If you want to talk about that stuff, start your own.

And just to make it very clear, the reason I stopped talking to you was because of your quite shocking reaction, as if I had wronged you in some way, when I informed you that I wanted to continue our conversation wholly in private, by email (which I don't any more, by the way).

Furthermore, since you have no actual questions, what's the point of going on about it, going round in circles?


As I noted above...

Now that I'm interested in it, it becomes one more facet of my own exploration into the manner in which I construe human identity as an existential manifestation of dasein. As with all the other subjects on all of the other threads I have begun here at ILP. And since I have created many, many posts on this thread in which to further that exploration, it never occurred to me to start a whole other thread.


So, no, I'm not going to start a new thread. That, from my frame of mind, would be ridiculous.

Look, if you want, contact Carleas and ask him to lock the thread. That way I would be unable to respond further with my own insights here. Again, there are just so many things in this world that can become "beyond my control".

Also, ask yourself what prompts you to react to my posts as you do. I have my own suspicions, but I will keep them to myself.


Please stop posting in this thread.


First of all, Maia contacted me in an email recently apologizing for asking me to stop posting. She even contributed a post of her own above relating to a post of mine on dreams.

On the other hand, is something going on "behind the curtains" here that I am not privy to?

She has once again abruptly ended our email exchange. Why? She doesn't say.

So, did she contact you through a PM asking you to tell me to stop posting...again?

Just level with me please.

Note to Dan:

I have begun the laborious task of creating a new thread for my postings on this thread. Enough of this already.

Actually, it wasn't nearly as laborious as I'd imagined. 30 minutes at most.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: Do we dream less as we get older?

Postby Maia » Sun Jul 04, 2021 7:35 pm

I replied to your email of 1 July in which you had asked me questions about how I live at home. I have received no emails from you since.

My apology was for calling you voyeuristic and festishistic, which I felt guilty about. But given the tone of your email to me of about half an hour ago, perhaps I was right the first time.

And no, I have not been in touch with Dan.

My main objection to your posts here is that you seem to be talking about me, without actually addressing me, which I find pretty creepy, and, indeed, voyeuristic. A case in point is your post from yesterday:

+++In fact, there are medical conditions related to blindness at birth [or at a very young age] such that medical science has not yet perfected a way to reverse the condition. So for those like Maia the question still remains: what about my condition?+++

Every day for almost two whole months I did my best to provide lengthy and interesting replies to your posts here, talking about my life as openly as I could, but despite everything I said, you still appear to believe that I'm desperately hoping for a cure for my "condition".
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Re: Do we dream less as we get older?

Postby Sculptor » Sun Jul 04, 2021 7:45 pm

Maia wrote:I replied to your email of 1 July in which you had asked me questions about how I live at home. I have received no emails from you since.

My apology was for calling you voyeuristic and festishistic, which I felt guilty about. But given the tone of your email to me of about half an hour ago, perhaps I was right the first time.

And no, I have not been in touch with Dan.

My main objection to your posts here is that you seem to be talking about me, without actually addressing me, which I find pretty creepy, and, indeed, voyeuristic. A case in point is your post from yesterday:

+++In fact, there are medical conditions related to blindness at birth [or at a very young age] such that medical science has not yet perfected a way to reverse the condition. So for those like Maia the question still remains: what about my condition?+++

Every day for almost two whole months I did my best to provide lengthy and interesting replies to your posts here, talking about my life as openly as I could, but despite everything I said, you still appear to believe that I'm desperately hoping for a cure for my "condition".


This sounds like some pretty unsavoury attention.
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Re: Do we dream less as we get older?

Postby iambiguous » Sun Jul 04, 2021 7:54 pm

Maia wrote: I replied to your email of 1 July in which you had asked me questions about how I live at home. I have received no emails from you since.


I did not receive that email. I checked again and again. Thus creating this gigantic mix-up. So, please disregard the email I sent to you this morning.

Maia wrote: My apology was for calling you voyeuristic and festishistic, which I felt guilty about. But given the tone of your email to me of about half an hour ago, perhaps I was right the first time.


I'm no Adam. The "tone" revolved entirely around the fact that, from my end, I had not heard from you in days. Apparently, as it turns out, because I did not receive your last email

Maia wrote: And no, I have not been in touch with Dan.


Note to Dan:

So, what was your post all about then?

Maia wrote: My main objection to your posts here is that you seem to be talking about me, without actually addressing me, which I find pretty creepy, and, indeed, voyeuristic. A case in point is your post from yesterday:

+++In fact, there are medical conditions related to blindness at birth [or at a very young age] such that medical science has not yet perfected a way to reverse the condition. So for those like Maia the question still remains: what about my condition?+++


Of course I'm going to make references to you from time to time. After all, as I explained above, it was you who got me so enthralled with these relationships in the first place!!! Thinking about identity given frames of mind that had never really crossed mine.

Maia wrote: Every day for almost two whole months I did my best to provide lengthy and interesting replies to your posts here, talking about my life as openly as I could, but despite everything I said, you still appear to believe that I'm desperately hoping for a cure for my "condition".


I've tried to explain that over and again.

I think perhaps it might be best if we just called it quits. The very last thing in the world I wanted was to bring any sort of contention of this sort into our exchange. I thought we might actually be on our way to sustaining a virtual friendship...not whatever this has turned out to be.

Anyway, this thread is now defunct. But, again, thanks for making me aware of a world I had never given much thought to at all.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: Do we dream less as we get older?

Postby iambiguous » Sun Jul 04, 2021 7:57 pm

Shemp wrote:This sounds like some pretty unsavoury attention.
The forum has as duty to protect you and you ought to Ask the moderators to do something.


Butting in again regarding something that you know absolutely nothing about. :lol:
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: Do we dream less as we get older?

Postby iambiguous » Sun Jul 04, 2021 8:06 pm

If anyone wishes to explore the existential relationships noted in the subject box, I have created a new thread: https://www.ilovephilosophy.com/viewtop ... 5&t=197162
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: Do we dream less as we get older?

Postby iambiguous » Sun Jul 04, 2021 9:01 pm

Turned out it was me all the time. I just emailed Maia apologizing for accidently sending that email she did send me to spam! How I could have done that is beyond my grasp. But unless someone broke into my apartment solely in order to do that himself, I did it. Completely bizarre among other things.

But I do think it is still best to send my posts here to the new thread.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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