Human beings have an innate capacity for pattern recognition. It is part of the ways our brains learn to process information we perceive from the physical world. However, perceptions only represent one level or scale of patterns. There are also associative patterns to be found in the interactions of perceptions and, at yet another level, conceptual patterns to be found in the interactions of associations and perceptions. In this video, Antonio Damasio describes how the mind’s original function was to create maps of the body. This is perhaps another way of saying that the mind evolved from the recognition and representation of patterns of information about the body.
We have a brain for a very interesting reason… because with neural-signaling, you have the possibility of making representations… of what you can do in certain situations.
When you come to the point of having a mind, you enter something which is completely new in brain evolution, which is the possibility of creating maps, first of your own organism, and then of the outside world.
And so the idea of mind and body comes from that very peculiar relationship. Mind is not something disembodied, it’s something that is, in total, essential, intrinsic ways, embodied. There would not be a mind if you did not have in the brain the possibility of constructing maps of our own organism.
The interconnectedness of our bodies and our minds | Antonio Damasio