Hierarchical Brain

An explanation of the human brain

First published 1st February 2024. This is version 1.5 published 2nd March 2024.
Three pages are not yet published: sleep, memory and an index.
Copyright © 2024 Email info@hierarchicalbrain.com

Warning - the conclusions of this website may be disturbing for some people without a stable mental disposition or with a religious conviction.

Home page

Welcome to the Hierarchical Brain website.

This set of more than 40 interlinked web pages contains my proposed explanation of the workings of the human brain. It starts with the basic building blocks of neurons and synapses in my brain, and goes on to describe a hierarchical model of how my thoughts, feelings and consciousness are created. Each level of the hierarchy describes new emergent concepts and behaviours.

My brain uses a standard method involving coincidence detection, selection and prediction to process all incoming sense data, as well as data from within my body and from within my brain, to create and maintain networks that represent concepts. I call these networks “symbol schemas”; they are compressed and abstracted models of reality, and together they form a model of my world. All my perception and knowledge is solely via this model.

The most important of these networks is the self symbol schema that models me, my body and my brain. But my astonishing conclusion is that it is more than just a model of me, it is me! My consciousness, including my feelings and emotions, are all produced within this schema and I perceive the world and myself from the perspective of being within this schema. This perspective is completely hidden from me and is a secret that has been hidden from every human.

Although this idea is counterintuitive, I provide an argument that says that my consciousness can in fact only be created within a schema of myself. It also answers many other questions, including why my perception is not a complete or correct version of reality, and why I can know so little about the working of my own brain from introspection alone.

To find out more, go to the abstract, jump to the introduction or full summary, or see the structure of this website.
A simple summary is also available, intended for children or for people who are learning English.

Page last uploaded Wed Jan 31 07:25:01 2024 MST