Awareness – Integration – Reality Modelling

Friday, April 23rd, 2010 at 8:00 am.
by pre.

In the third lap around the spiral, we looked at reality modelling, learning to see your understanding of the world that you live in for what it is, and develop a deep in-the-guts instinctive feel for spotting where your understanding of your universe may differ from other people’s, and from the actual world.

If you can’t see how having an accurate model of your understanding of the world, including the flaws in that model, helps you towards transcendence then it’s because your model of the world isn’t accurate enough, or you’re not fully aware of it’s flaws.

Having that good model enables you to better direct your mental effort, to better understand why other people disagree with each other, to resolve arguments, indeed to better understand and improve the other skills in the spiral.

Your understanding of what your memory is, how it works, how fallible it is and which kinds of failure it’s likely to suffer from all help you to learn how much you can trust your memory. Knowing how the world works can help you rule out impossible memories, or allow you to work out some details which may remind you of others.

As we saw last lap, the ‘placebo effect’ is at the very boundary between consciousness and body, between your understanding of your world and the world itself. Understanding how a thought can effect your immune system gives you a mental model under which you can learn to encourage it to do so. Your consciousness likely actually is your understanding of yourself. It exists only in your mind with only an indirect relationship between your understanding of it and reality. Just like everything else you’ve ever experienced.

There is no better way to the control, shape and perception of your body than understanding and improving your own models of it, and where they differ from reality. A comprehension of it’s reactions to food and excercise can help you shape it, to listen more carefully to it, to spot it’s subtle lies and deceptions.

It feels almost trivial to say that cognition helps to feed your reality modelling. Thinking about the world is exactly how you came to understand it as well as you do. Thinking is how you run your model, how you do tests upon it, how your very understanding works.

Your social skills are improved massively by the realisation that others think differently to yourself, and even more by understanding how their minds work.

The Meditation

In this month’s guided walking meditation you’ll spend some time looking at the world, deeply examining your experience of it in order to increase your perception awareness. At the same time, you’ll also be thinking about the things you know about that object, that scene, the world, which you can’t see, touch, taste or hear right now, using that to gain an increased understanding of which parts of your world are perception, and which parts reality modelling, which parts evidence and which parts map.