As reported in The Three-Pound Universe by Judith Hooper and Dick Teresi, “The image in your head is not a straightforward copy of anything. Palm trees and Ella Fitzgerald’s high notes are represented in your brain by abstract codes. There are no colors, no sounds, and no smells in your neural tissue.”

Both Darwinians and creationists are stuck in ideologies—fixed mental frameworks through which they interpret the phenomena. Wouldn’t it be much more in the spirit of scientific inquiry to leave different avenues of explanation open as one continues to investigate the phenomena? Scientists should enjoy uncertainty and discovery as much as they enjoy fitting facts into a neat conceptual framework.

“wait a minute, who’s in the driver’s seat here—an idea I’ve come to serve, or my search for truth?”

These senses of ‘intelligence’ have been named by rough analogy with creating and the storing of energy as, potential intelligence and kinetic intelligence (Gregory 1987). The notion is that stored-from-the-past potential intelligence of knowledge, is selected and applied to solve current perceptual problems by active processing of kinetic intelligence. The more available knowledge, the less processing is required; however, kinetic intelligence is needed for building useful knowledge, by learning through discovery and testing. (The analogy is imperfect because knowledge is not conserved. Nevertheless, these terms may be useful though, apart from secret knowledge, ‘potential intelligence’ is not diminished by use.) When almost complete answers are available, knowledge takes the dominating role. Then ‘top-down’ becomes more important than ‘bottom-up’, which may be so for human vision. (Remarkably, there are more downwards fibres from the cortex to the lateral geniculate bodies LGN) ‘relay stations’ than bottom-up from the eyes (Sillito 1995).)


An important point is that, in perception, the mind is experiencing a process that it itself is generating, and a theory of perception has to be about that process. If a person is looking at a ball, the person doesn’t perceive the “actual” ball, even though that’s what it seems like. The actual ball is a buzz of subatomic particles somewhere out there in the continuum of matter/energy, some of which interact with light which makes a pattern on the person’s retina in the eye. So, the person doesn’t perceive the actual ball. The person doesn’t even perceive the pattern of light on the retina. Rather, the person’s mind actively generates an image which is kept up to date by interaction with the retina, and it is only the image “in the mind” which is ever experienced. Loosely speaking, the mind is always hallucinating (but hopefully the hallucinations are coordinated with the reality of the objective world). There are many examples which could reinforce this – such as the eye’s blind spot, visual illusions, and the fact that we “see” in dreams – but we aren’t going to go into them here. Instead we take it as given that in perception a mind is experiencing a process which it itself is generating.


At each stage, the perceived component appears to fully characterize the environment. In other words, the component is experienced as the “ground of reality”. So to make this perception prevail, a mind blocks the tests which would allow perceptions of a higher order, since the higher order perceptions refute that the lower component is the “ground of reality”. However, since perception of component 4 is perception of this blocking process and how it operates to enforce perception, a mind at this stage can “override” this blocking process “in principle.” (in fact also)

Letters to DrB>Here



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