Is that a snake or a stick on the ground ? The evolutionary source of self.
Perhaps the origin of the self is the amygdala, for through it
we can constantly be aware of danger even before we can think.
It instantly warns us of danger and thus helps us to survive
And perhaps the amygdala is the evolutionary source of Self,
since the Self perceives danger through it and makes decisions from a
certain point of view.
How would it assess the danger ? There are some objective
measures of danger (and quality in general).
the most familiar one being the semantic differential.
It is used to estimate the emotional quality of words,
but it obviously applies as well to the danger of an encounter
(fight or flight instincs). It has worked surprisingly well
across a number of languages, even those like mandarin written
in mandarin characters.
When you come across a word, or make a sudden encounter,
you ask, as the caveman asked regarding the sabre-toothed tiger,
1. Is is dangerous ?
2. Is it bigger than I am ?
3. Is it faster than I am ?
If all three are positive, the best option is flight.
Dr. Roger B Clough NIST (ret.) [1/1/2000]
See my Leibniz site at
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