Mental process or mental function are terms often used interchangeably for all the things that individuals can do with their minds. These include perception, memory, thinking (such as ideation, imagination, belief, reasoning, etc.), volition, and emotion. Sometimes the term cognitive function is used instead.
When we say experiences are internal to the experiencing person , then we refer to the states of concious ness or awareness
- Quotes are arranged alphabetically by author
A - F
- Cognitive processes Higher mental processes, such as perception, memory, language, problem solving, and abstract thinking.
- American Psychological Association APA (2013). "Glossary of psychological terms," at Apa.org. Retrieved 08-201
- If perception and sensuous apprehension, with their consequent rationalizings and the institution of a subsequent mental process, have their source in the brain, then Dr. Sellars is right in his book, Evolutionary Naturalism (1922), when he says that mind can be regarded as a "physical category" and that "we should mean by it the nervous processes which find expression in intelligent conduct."
- Alice Bailey, From Intellect To Intuition, Ch. VI, (1932)
- This idea fails to satisfy the majority of thinkers and most of them — belonging to other schools than the purely materialistic — posit something more than matter, and regard the mind as distinct from the brain; they hold the hypothesis that it is a subjective substantial reality, which can use the brain as its terminal of expression and which it can impress in order to express those concepts and intuitions which a man can consciously utilize. What we are are considering is in no wise a supernormal faculty, or the possession of a specialized instrument by a gifted few; the mind should be used by all educated people, and at the close of the educational process (carried on in the formative years) a man should be in possession of a faculty that he understands and uses at will.
- Alice Bailey, From Intellect To Intuition, Ch. VI, (1932)
- Dr. McDougall points out in Psychology, the Science of Behavior (1912) that our mental activity (which is usually unconscious) can be either subnormal, normal or supernormal. [lxix3] In the first case, you will have the idiot or the feeble-minded; in the second, you will have the intelligent average citizen whose mind is a theatre or rather a cinematograph, registering anything that happens to come along; and, finally, we shall discover those rare souls whose consciousness is illuminated and whose minds record that which is hidden to the majority.
- Alice Bailey, From Intellect To Intuition, Ch. VI, (1932)
- It is difficult for us in these days to appreciate or to comprehend the Atlantean state of consciousness. There was no mental process whatsoever except among the leaders of the race; there was only rampant, ruthless, insatiable desire. This... forced two issues and confronted the race with two hitherto unrealised problems. The first was that psychological attitudes and states of consciousness can and do bring about physiological conditions, these being both good and bad. Secondly, for the first time the people faced with recognition the phenomenon of death—death which they themselves brought about in a new way and not just by physical means. This had to be dramatised for them in some definitely objective manner, for as yet the masses did not respond to verbal teaching but only to visual events. When, therefore, they saw a particularly predatory and rapacious person begin to suffer from a dire disease which seemed to arise from within himself and—whilst suffering—hold on to his love of life (as tubercular people do today), they were faced with another aspect or form of the original law (imposed in Lemurian times) which said: "The soul that sinneth, it shall die." Death had hitherto been accepted without questioning as the fate of all living things, but now, for the first time, mental relationship between individual action and death was recognised—as yet in a dim and feeble way—and a great step forward was made in the human consciousness.
- Alice Bailey, A Treatise on the Seven Rays: Volume 4: Esoteric Healing. (1953)
- A mass of information is now available to those who have the ability to read and write—and the number of these is growing every day—whilst the means of transmission and of communication have practically annihilated time and brought the whole world together as a functioning unit... Much of it is ill-digested and unusable, yet it tends to the general elevation of the mental process.
- Alice Bailey Education in the New Age, Ch. II - The Cultural Unfoldment of the Race (1954) p.58
- Criteria of Mind
- 1) A mind is an aggregate of interacting parts or components.
- 2) The interaction between parts of mind is triggered by difference, and difference is a nonsubstantial phenomenon not located in space or time; difference is related to negentropy and entropy rather than energy.
- 3) Mental process requires collateral energy.
- 4) Mental process requires circular (or more complex) chains of determination.
- 5) In mental process, the effects of difference are to be regarded as transforms (i.e., coded versions) of events which proceeded them. The rules of such transformation must be comparatively stable (i.e., more stable than the content), but are in themselves subject to transformation.
- 6) The description and classification of these processes of transformation disclose a hierarchy of logical types immanent in the phenomena.
- Gregory Bateson, Mind and Nature: A Necessary Unity, 1979 p. 92
- We are governed, our minds are molded, our tastes formed, our ideas suggested, largely by men we have never heard of. ... In almost every act of our daily lives, whether in the sphere of politics or business, in our social conduct or our ethical thinking, we are dominated by the relatively small number of persons ... who understand the mental processes and social patterns of the masses. It is they who pull the wires which control the public mind.
- The purpose of photography is the transmission of a visualized sector of life through the medium of the camera into a mental process that starts with the photographer's thinking about the subject he photographs and is continued in the mind of the spectator.
- Jacob Deschin, "Nature as it is". New York Times (1857-Current file); Feb 3, 1952; Proquest Historical Newspapers The New York Times (1851 - 2002) pg. X14
- Were all instructors to realize that the quality of mental process, not the production of correct answers, is the measure of educative growth, something hardly less than a revolution in teaching would be worked.
- What attracted me so strongly and exclusively to mathematics, apart from the actual content, was particularly the specific nature of the mental processes by which mathematical concepts are handled. This way of deducing and discovering new truths from old ones, and the extraordinary clarity and self-evidence of the theorems, the ingeniousness of the ideas... had an irresistible fascination for me. Beginning from the individual theorems, I grew accustomed to delve more deeply into their relationships and to grasp whole theories as a single entity. That is how I conceived the idea of mathematical beauty...
- Ferdinand Eisenstein Curriculum Vitae (1843)
G - L
- The classical support for as-if models in the social sciences stems from the economist Milton Friedman (1953), who, like the psychologist B. F. Skinner, saw little value in modeling cognitive processes. In contrast, our aim is to understand actual decision processes, not only the outcomes. There is a good reason for this. Without modeling the cognitive blade of Simon's scissors, it is utterly impossible to determine in what environments heuristics succeed, that is, their ecological rationality.
- Gerd Gigerenzer, Ralph Hertwig, and Thorsten Pachur, Heuristics: The Foundations of Adaptive Behavior, 2015.
- It seems to me immensely unlikely that mind is a mere by-product of matter. For if my mental processes are determined wholly by the motions of atoms in my brain I have no reason to suppose that my beliefs are true. They may be sound chemically, but that does not make them sound logically. And hence I have no reason for supposing my brain to be composed of atoms.
- J. B. S. Haldane, "When I am Dead" in Possible Worlds (1927)
- In the near future, neurobiology will address a matter of more general and fundamental importance: the biology of human mental processes. ...Psychology and psychiatry can illuminate and define for biology the mental functions that need to be studied if we are to have a meaningful and sophisticated understanding of the biology of the human mind.
- Eric Kandel, Psychiatry, Psychoanalysis, and the New Biology of Mind (2008)
- In conceptual art the idea or the concept is the most important aspect of the work. When an artist uses a conceptual form of art, it means that all of the planning and decisions are made beforehand and the execution is a perfunctory affair. The idea becomes a machine that makes the art. This kind of art is not theoretical or illustrative of theories; it is intuitive; it is involved with all types of mental processes and it is purposeless. It is usually free from the dependence on the skill of the artist as a craftsman.
M - R
- It's difficult to be rigorous about whether a machine really 'knows', 'thinks', etc., because we're hard put to define these things. We understand human mental processes only slightly better than a fish understands swimming.
- Cognitive processes surely exist, so it can hardly be unscientific to study them.
- Ulric Neisser. (1967). Cognitive Psychology. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice Hall. p. 5
S - Z
- If you really want to know your mind, the body will always give you a truthful reflection, so look at the emotion or rather feel it in your body. If there is an apparent
conflict between them, the thought will be the lie, the emotion will be the truth. Not the ultimate truth of who you are, but the relative truth of your state of mind at that time.
Conflict between surface thoughts and unconscious mental processes is certainly common. You may not yet be able to bring your unconscious mind activity into awareness as thoughts, but it will always be reflected in the body as an emotion, and of this you can become aware. To watch an emotion in this way is basically the same as listening to or watching a thought, which I described earlier. The only difference is that, while a thought is in your head, an emotion has a strong physical component and so is primarily felt in the body. You can then allow the emotion to be there without being controlled by it. You no longer are the emotion; you are the watcher, the observing presence. If you practice this, all that is unconscious in you will be brought into the light of consciousness.
- Eckhart Tolle in The Power of Now: A Guide to Spiritual Enlightenment (1997) p. 22
- An essential part of the awakening is the recognition of the unawakened you, the ego as it thinks, speaks and acts, as well as the recognition of the collectively conditioned mental processes that perpetuate the unawakened state. That is why this book shows the main aspects of the ego and how they operate in the individual as well as in the collective. This is important for two related reasons: The first is that unless you know the basic mechanics behind the workings of the ego, you won’t recognize it, and it will trick you into identifying with it again and again.
- Eckhart Tolle in The Power of Now: A Guide to Spiritual Enlightenment (1997) p. 32
- No scientist has yet provided an acceptable definition of "mind" or "mental" that reveals the character of "unconscious mental processes," and no physicist a lucid definition of "elementary particles" that shows how they can appear or disappear, and why there are so many.
- Lancelot Law Whyte, Essay on Atomism: From Democritus to 1960 (1961).