Consciential Asymmetry:

Toward a Non-Reductionist Framework and Ontology of Brain Function Laterality

Pedro Machin 1, 2 and Nelson Abreu 2, 3, 4

1 - College of Engineering, U. of Florida; 2 - Science of Self Club; 3 - Int'l Acad. of Consciousness; 4 - Florida Int'l U.


Parting ways with simple dichotomies that have inspired countless self-help programs and that still linger in pop-culture, we aim to briefly review research progress and understanding of the brain's functional laterality or asymmetry. The evidence suggests that the left brain tends to concern itself with details or the "local picture," whereas the right-hemisphere's bias seems tilted towards the "global picture." We set forth a tentative framework to explicate why the brain has two hemispheres with its different styles, based on the consciential paradigm and computer design principles.  Initial support for the framework is drawn from hints such as physiological differences and research that includes "split-brain" patients, brain imaging during visual tasks with temporarily-disabled hemispheres or with alternating emphasis of either detailed or global focus.



Pedro Machin (Born: Zaragoza, Spain, 1983) is a computer science graduate student at the University of Florida, where is also an open-minded, skeptical member of the Science of Self Club - a student organization dedicated to studies on consciousness, with an emphasis on paradigmatic anomalies. Machin has a long-standing interest in scientific enigmas, especially on the workings of the human brain.

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Nelson Abreu (Born: Lisbon, Portugal, 1982) is an instructor at the International Academy of Consciousness - Miami and intern of the PEAR laboratory. In 2003, he founded the Science of Self Club which organizes discussions, pilot studies, and symposia on consciousness studies and events on consciousness development. Abreu helped Dr. Barbara Welsch initiate an annual special topics curricular psychology course on consciousness studies at the University of Florida and was its assistant for the first two editions. Currently, he is an undergraduate electrical engineering student at Florida International University and serves as Student Representative of the SSE.