You are viewing a read-only archive of the Blogs.Harvard network. Learn more.

The Longest Now

Feedback loops with the world
Monday February 07th 2005, 5:41 am
Filed under:

Sometimes I am convinced that we survive and interact, in part based on
our conscious and subconscious acts, but in part based on the natural
feedback between different parts of the world.  It doesn’t require
a Collective Unconscious for a word or idea or song can hang in the
air, on the tip of the tongues of everyone present; or for two
long-lost friends to call one another at the same moment; or for a pair
of identical twins to send one another identical birthday presents by
accident.  These are natural consequences, slightly external to
any single person’s volition, of relationships between people and
shared experiences, memories, events.

Some of these relationships are difficult to isolate, however. 
How is it that people who always wake up right before their alarm clock
goes off, can do so…
the first day on a new sleep schedule / in a new timezone?  
How can a swimmer improve her time by visualizing the clock showing the
time she wants to get?)

There are even more exotic feedback loops to consider. 

Why do some people describe dreams that
they insist later had strongly predictive power?  I have an
otherwise very sensible and successful friend who had a ten-minute-long
episode of deja-vu at a crowded table, during which he wrote a message
to a friend sitting next to him describing what was about to transpire,
and who would say what… where do such memories, or meta-memories, or
self-delusions of meta-memories, come from?

How is it possible to change
conversations (e.g., via apparently random words), physical states
(e.g., three-point takedowns), or mental states (e.g., hypnosis from
months or years previous) in simple, repeatable ways that defy common

Everything can probably be described in terms of  local feedback
loops, just as the solar system can be described in terms of
epicycles.  But there is simplicity in the observed phenomena that
makes me long for a similarly simple answer.

How you can hypnotize anyone today like professional hypnotists.
You can easily learn and the talent will expand as you use it.

Comment by ytsp 03.09.13 @ 8:30 am

Bad Behavior has blocked 244 access attempts in the last 7 days.