Current AI resembles left-brained reasoning - optimized, logical but decontextualized. Humans play the right-brained role anchored in real world connections.

An abstract image of a brain

Key Points

  • Our minds synthesize both left and right brained cognition into unified consciousness.
  • Two divergent AI paths emerge—either keeping AI subservient and left-brained, or pursuing artificial general intelligence with balanced hemispheres.
  • Pursuing AGI risks unintended consequences from uncontrolled synthetic intelligence. Contextual relevance may remain a human duty.
  • Advancing language models offer a third path—enhancing holistic human cognition through closer human-AI integration versus external AI synthesis.
  • Humans may prefer complementing innate socially-oriented abilities over replicating general intelligence artificially.
  • AI designed to elevate collective wisdom over individual optimization aligns with humanity's values and evolution.

A child stacking grains of sand struggles to determine when the pile becomes a heap. This dilemma reveals two distinct cognitive processes.

One resides in a closed system, methodically adding grains in binary pursuit of optimum heap specifications. Confined by its own representations, this analytical approach cannot independently escape to the necessary context. The heap's completion defies its computational optimization.

A second process operates externally, deconstructing observations more holistically. It asks open-ended questions to position the heap amid broader meaning. Embracing uncertainty, it recognizes ambiguity as intrinsic to existence.

As the mound grows, the heap suddenly materializes through perception's lens. Synthesizing analytical and contextual insights, the child integrates the heap into a coherent worldview.

Our minds elegantly orchestrate these dual processes, with the left hemisphere directing systematic analysis and the right overseeing contextual intuition. Despite divergent approaches, the brain reconciles experiences into unified consciousness.

Brains are not just sensemaking tools or prediction machines. Brains bring the world into being. In our complex social environment, the brain must contend with a fundamental tension—navigating the differing contexts of the personal and communal realms. In the personal sphere, it's just you and your needs, competing with other individuals. Your attention must be deliberately directed and narrowly focused.

Conversely, in the communal realm, you need to consider yourself as part of a social group. It's crucial to feel connected to something larger than yourself, possibly even existing "through" others. In this context, your attention should be wide-ranging, receptive, and attuned to elements outside your individual experience, with an emphasis on external alliances.

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