Lingua Franca of the brain

Ezequiel Morsella has been kind enough to send me more information on the Passive Frame theory of consciousness. So here is another posting on ideas from that source.

From time to time I encounter notions of there being a ‘language of the brain’ or a brain coding system. Although I would not say that there was no extra language layer (who knows?), I have never seen the necessity for it. The idea seems a product of thinking of the brain in the context of software algorithms, digital transmission, information theory, universal Turing machines and the like rather than in biological cell to cell communication.

Look at forming and retrieving episodic memories: they are conscious experiences before they are stored and conscious experiences when they are retrieved. Awareness is in the form of consciousness and so is the access of various parts of the brain to information from other parts. We understand movement of ourselves and others in similar terms. The Passive Frame proponents talk of perception-like tokens – “they represent well-crafted representations occurring at a stage of processing between sensory analysis and motor programming” and are presumably accessible to both. Here we can have a lingua franca for sensory-motor interaction.

Of course for both sensory and motor processing we need a space and viewpoint for the perception-like tokens. This is often thought of as a stage or a sensorium, but I like to think of it as a model of the environment with the organism active in it. In this ‘space’ the objects we perceive can be placed and our actions can be simulated.

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