Joseph Knoll: The Brain and Its Self
Joseph Knoll’s answers to Edward Shorter’s questions
I am honored by this presentation and answer with pleasure your questions.
According to the sense, the urge to copulate is of necessity an innate heterosexual drive.Nevertheless, for reasons unknown, in about 2 per cent of humans, the urge to copulate manifests itself as an innate homosexual drive.
Despite considerable number of published papers indicating that homosexuality has a genetics of its own and described differences between gays and straights, we still do not know how this not to the purpose form of the innate sexual drive became fixed in the mammalian brain. Since homosexual patterns can be provoked in male rats, it seems obvious that this non-purposeful form of the sexual drive developed in a very early stage of development of the mammalian brain. The 2% occurence of the innate homosexual drive was obviously fixed in the human brain as is development in 98% of an innate heterosexual drive so important for continuation of life, suitable to the purpose of reproduction. Thus, the discrimination of homosexuals is from the physiological point of view, beyond all questions, unjustified.
The not deserved unfortunate lot of the homosexuals for centuries in the Christian and Muslim world was always and is still inseparable from the myths-directed era of human history.Humanity is born with a brain without any knowledge as to how the real world and the human body and mind function. In contrast, we all are born with a brain capable to create a non-existing world.
Thus, Homo sapiens was compelled to create the still operating myths-directed society. However, in order to survive, mankind was compelled to discover how the real world functions. At the end of the 18th century, general knowledge progressed to a critical level, and since the age of enlightenment, science and technology developed at a previously unthinkable pace. Humanity continues to rapidly approach the final state, one fully grounded in scientifically well-established knowledge. Only a future global change in education, one based on the exact knowledge of the brain mechanisms responsible for the easy manipulation of human behavior, can finally lead to rationally directed society and terminate the present day era where one hand destroys what the other hand has created.
The innate homosexual drive is, even in our days for billions, traditionally unacceptable. Due to common fallacies, homosexuality is in some countries even in the 21st century an indictable offense. As in the past, dense ignorance is still the Greatest World Power.Only Science can finally conquer it and help to outgrow the myths-directed era of history and establish a rationally directed human society.
SM and fetish
To throw light upon the origin of SM and fetish, I need to mention the building and characteristics of acquired drives in a mammalian brain.
The four-billion years history of the development of life on earth reached its peak about 60 million years ago with the appearance of mammals. The most sophisticated function of the mammalian telencephalon is the ability to fix an irrepressible urge for a goal unnecessary for survival of the individual or species (acquired drive, active reflex – for definition see: inhn.org, Dictionary).
The fact is that only a minority of mammals is in possession of a restricted ability to fix inextinguishable conditioned reflexes (ICRs) and acquired drives; for example, the rat is in possession of this endowment, the mouse is devoid of it; marks Nature’s long road of experimentation with the brain. Culmination of the process has been the development of our brain. Homo sapiens, the only living member of the human family, born about 143-144.000-years ago, being in possession of a functional network with over 100 billion interrelated nerve cells and 1011 bit capacity, and of the unlimited ability to fix acquired drive, created human society, the highest form of life on earth.
Though the development of an acquired drive always originates in one way or another from an innate drive, which relation later becomes unrecognizable, nothing exists in the brain without a rational origin.
In humans, whenever a drive is acquired, chains of ICRs are fixed, neurons responsible for emotions are also coupled to the integral whole, and thus, cognitive/volitional consciousness is necessarily inseparable from an affective state of consciousness. The mechanism that binds emotions as appurtenances to any chain of ICRs is of crucial importance to human interpersonal communication.
Without the unique endowment of the human brain to discover the natural laws (science),we would not be able to survive, without the ability which allows detachmentfrom the concrete and explorations in the infinite (art), life would not be worthliving.
Since the manipulability of human behavior is unlimited, the family/school/society triad was always capable to manipulate the community to comply with the requirements, and ready to die in the name of “God”, “Fatherland”, ”King” and so on.
A glass-cylinder-seeking rat will never acquire this drive under natural conditions. We manipulated its brain, making use of the potential to change a group of cortical neurons via proper training. The best performing glass-cylinder-seeking rat, that was initially trained under pressure and acted in the learning phase always under coercion, seems finally as having a fanatic desire to search the glass-cylinder and jump onto the rim of its top. In the rats which successfully acquired the glass-cylinder-seeking drive, it suppressed even the innate hunger and sexual drives, and these animals run through 'fire and water' to reach their unnatural goal.
Humans possess among living creatures on earth the most manipulable brain. The brain of a suicide killer is furtively manipulated. The properly acquired drive develops as a result of long lasting training. The subject acts always under coercion, under severe mental pressure. Nevertheless, it is the nature of an acquired drive that, if the manipulation was fully successful, the individual behaves finally as possessing fanatic desire to reach the acquired-drive-motivated goal. Like our glass-cylinder-seeking rat which behaves as having a fanatic desire for the glass-cylinder. The suicide killers, produced today in huge numbers in the Muslim world, clearly demonstrate that even the most potent innate drive, the struggle for life, can be suppressed via a properly fixed acquired drive. The suicide killer lays down his life to blow up a bus full of children.
The higher the cultural level of a society, the better is the chance for a cultural “overlay” over basic sexual orientation to be detectable. Both SM and fetish are excellent examples of the fixation of acquired drives and chains of ICRs pertaining to these drives, based originally on the innate sexual drive. Even if some of the fixed ICR-chains, like for example flogging, seem to be unreasonable, it is a natural endowment that due to its immense manipulability, via proper training, any absurd-goal seeking behavior can be fixed into the human brain.
December 17, 2015