Reality Blind - Vol. 1

system underlying that moment of conscious experience. We don't experience a thousand chattering voices but a unified experience. Consciousness flows easily and naturally from one moment to the next with a single unified and coheren t narrative. The reality we experience emerges out of a particular specialized system I call the 'interpreter', which is specialized to the brain's left hemisphere. It is the trigger for human beliefs which constrain our brain ." - Dr. Michael Gazzaniga Summary: One of our “modules” plays a very outsiz ed role in modern humans and the functioning of our societies. It turns out the consciousness we subjectively experience is a small subsystem in the left hemisphere of our brain, which creates a seamless illusion of “self,” and which probably evolved to make us more effective in social interactions. This module is entirely unaware of the other modules as their inner workings are invisible to it. Our “sense of self” that arises from this “interpreter” module (or “executive secretary” if you prefer) stitches our inner voices into inferences and explanations that create a socially advantageous narrative. We have no conscious access to the cognitive modules which, for instance, might make us project a sense of revulsion onto a stranger because there is some faint bad background odor in the room or because they look like someone who scared us when we were two years old. The kicker to all this is that since the “interpreter” module has NO knowledge of (or even access to) the other modular sub-processes of the brain, but only to the outputs (decisions) made by thousands of babbling idiot subsystems, it just makes stuff up, typically settling for a quasi-reasonable story that reflects most favorably on... US. Thus, we live inside self - constructed virtual worlds organized around post-hoc rationalizations. This personal narrative is the story which is marketed to those around us. It can be pretty much entirely BS, but it’s our BS, and we are evolved to believe it absolutely, without question. Even if we frequently (and retroactively) change our story, our feeling of belief and the confidence we have in it seldom wavers. It’s the interpreter module’s job to make us believe we know, and thereby help us convince those around us with the best story it can come up with. The upshot is that most of the reality we experience is an after-the-fact rationalization, strung together by a little tabloid editor in the left brain, based on input that has only a passing relation to reality. Yes, seriously. And as we’ll see this is super -relevant to our ecological reality.

TaaL: Allow me to summarize:

1. What you consider your human “self” is really hordes of independent idiot-savant mini-brains and modules who for the


Powered by