The Thinking of Thoughts
An immaterial functionalism
I wish to present an insubstantial account of the mind. It is an historical irony that immaterialists have generally attempted to shift the ancient concept of substance from matter to the mind. Perhaps the maintenance of substantiality was meant to assuage our chronic sense of insecurity.
I am replacing substance with narrative that supposedly acts as the glue that holds together the thoughts that constitute the world and us. That simple analogy gives too much substance to individual thoughts. What substance there is, lies with the narrative and the 'contained' thoughts exist only under the pain of deliberate analysis.
Narration is the spontaneous and natural organizing principle by which the virtual experiential chaos becomes self-substantiating. Narrators and actors become the primary nodes in the always 'dynamic' relational matrix of emerging reality. The narration unfolds in a super-temporal manifold, historical time being an artifact of the narration.
Let us consider, as a fairly radical example of this ontology, my computer. My computer is an artifact of the history of science and technology. It is also an artifact of the narrative of my life. The internal Pentium chip was 'manufactured' by Intel, but the collective conscious and unconscious of its designers and users maintain its functioning. It functions in accord with our collective expectations, and that includes its malfunctioning. Its behavior is socially constrained, just as is yours and my behavior and misbehavior. This explanation may seem far-fetched, but I warrant that it is more rational than the Big Bang and Darwinist explanation. No?