States of Consciousness in Sleep, Dream, and Beyond:

A Biothermodynamic and Neurocybernetic Evolutionary Study

Prasun K. Roy, D. Dutta Majumder

Neurobiology Division, lSA-129, University of California, Berkeley, CA 94720, USA
Neuro-Imaging program, ECSU, Indian Statistical Institute, Calcutta - 700 035, India
World Organisation of Systems & Cybernetics, 2 Rue de Voiulle, Paris 75015, France

Abstract

We study the inter-relationship between the states of sleep, dream, and wakefulness vis-a-vis the evolution of human brain. Various states and transformations of human consciousness are described in terms of the cognitive activation or entropy-production continuum. The evolutionary appearance of sleep, dream and allied states in the animal kingdom can be phylogenetically graded at each interval of about 125 million years (MY), as:
        Anabiosis - Hibernation - Torpor - Sleep - Dream - Lucidity
Lucidity has three phases of increasing cognitive or information-processing levels: Lucid dream - Luminous lucidity - Ecstatic lucidity. Ecstasic lucid dream is the somnolent counterpart of the hyperarousal state of wakefulness called Ecstasis. Luminous lucidity is the intermediary state, generating the entoptic sensation of colored radiance. Prigogine-Zotin's non-equilibrium biothermodynamic Principle of Evolution accounts for our formalism, by taking the brain as a self-adaptive energy-dissipative structure. We propose a heuristic neurocybernetic basis of dream/lucidity evolution using concepts of Short and Long-term memories, complex programming process, stochastic resonance and fuzzy periodicity.

Keywords

evolution, dream, sleep, thermodynamics, lucid dream, consciousness, cybernetics