Formal Similarities between Cybernetic Definition of Life and Cybernetic Model of Self-Consciousness: Universal Definition/Model of Individual


The previously proposed cybernetic definition of a living (biological) individual and the cybernetic model of a psychical individual (a self endowed with subjective consciousness) are extended and compared, and their formal similarities are isolated and highlighted. It is argued that the emergence of the biological level of reality from the physical level and of the psychical level from the biological level is closely analogous. The (biological or psychical) individual is constituted by a network of elements (negative feedbacks/ regulatory mechanisms or neurons/concepts, respectively) that possesses the following common properties: 1) it is intentional (in the operational sense); 2) its elements signify (have sense) by connotation (through relations to each other); 3) it contains an instrumental representation of (some aspects of) the world and 4) it is self-referential i.e. recurrently directed on itself (its own reproduction or representation, respectively). Thus life and self-consciousness have deep, formal, structural similarities when viewed abstractly. The cybernetic definition/model of an individual is also referred to societies/states, companies and other systems. It is postulated that this definition/model is a universal one and can be applied to all possible systems/objects existing in the Universe or constructed in the future by humans.

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Korzeniewski, B. (2013). Formal Similarities between Cybernetic Definition of Life and Cybernetic Model of Self-Consciousness: Universal Definition/Model of Individual. Open Journal of Philosophy, 3, 314-328. doi: 10.4236/ojpp.2013.32049.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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