Top Down vs Bottom Up Models of Awareness

I was recently asked by an educator my opinion on why there is so much resistance to the idea that reflex integration is beneficial. This is my emailed response:

“I think what you are running up against is the prevailing and pervasive view in our culture that the conscious mind determines awareness. At a deep level it can be threatening to have that view challenged, as it means that ultimately we are not in control of our experience of reality. For example, in Psychology, it is given that the neocortex initiates feelings, that emotion follows thought. The inverse is actually what we are coming to understand is what happens, that brain stem and even non Central Nervous System processes are the foundation of emotion, which generates conscious awareness.
The brilliance of Steiner, in my view, was that he recognized this 80 years ago. However since 2000, there has emerged a wide body of neuroscientific research in support this theory. This work has recently been summarized by Jak Panksepp in his book “The Archaeology of Mind” 2012. I recommend that you refer to this book for scientific validation of your recommendations. Dr. Antonio DaMassio has also written eloquently on this subject since the early 1990’s.
Given that our consensual reality is still essentially a flat earth framework after 500 years of celestial knowledge (the sun rises and sets, we go up and down stairs, instead of into and away from the center of the earth) it is likely that the “top down” view of awareness will persist for several hundred years, before we settle into acceptance that we in essence are animals that think.”

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