16 Dez Brain as system of binary multitudes
The cerebral system processes and organizes, through perception or representation, the information that the sensory networks have elaborated, starting from the stimuli that have been captured by their nerve endings (ocular, olfactory, tactile, and so on). It operates an analytic and synthetic understanding of the perceptions, and effects its cognitive strategies to detect danger, opportunity,
prey, predator, enemy, congener, and so on. It determines scenarios for conduct and chooses the one that seems the most promising and the least risky. It uses stratagems from its repertoire or invents them. This same brain stores acquired experience. It is capable of learning. The richer the brain is in innate abilities or aptitudes, the more it is able to acquire knowledge and invent strategies. One sees that, among primates and above all with hominization, innate programs tend to decrease and concentrate on sexual behavior, while innate structures, appropriate for the elaboration of strategies to resolve problems, tend to increase.
We also see that affective development and the development of intelligence go hand in hand. One might think that affectivity, in
the form of fear, anger, and blind desire, would interfere with intelligence. But affectivity, understood as the deep involvement of the whole being in relations with others and with congeners, develops, along with affection, friendship, love, and interpersonal and social relations; it gives rise to a great need to communicate, and it stimulates and intensifies a curiosity that goes beyond the immediate interests of security, feeding, and copulation. Certainly, curiosity is dangerous and, as the proverb says, killed the cat. But it gives life to a drive to explore and examine that, remarkable in primates and chimpanzees (&dquo;as curious as a monkey&dquo;), turns, among humans, into intellectual curiosity, the search for hidden meaning, and gives human thought a stimulus that is unknown to artificial computers.