Are thoughts concieved in realtime or are they preprocessed chains ready to be thought or both (depending on the prospective) or am I asking a too generalized question to have any sense ?


closed as too broad by anongoodnurse, Fizz, AliceD Apr 5 at 23:02

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  • $\begingroup$ This is hard to answer because no-one really knows what a thought is. If you make it narrower, like "a plan of action for catching a ball" you might get more detailed answers! But then it's not clear how well those answers would transfer to things like language or deciding what to eat for dinner. Having said that, you might enjoy "The mind is flat" by Nick Chater. One thing we do know for sure about thoughts is that they're really fast. Chater describes some experiments suggesting that the brain is always improvising, so the answer is probably more down the "real-time" end (but check out the b $\endgroup$ – steveLangsford Mar 26 at 20:08
  • $\begingroup$ Probably both. Some "thoughts" might be just reproducing information stored long ago, like quoting something. And then there's the mystery of creativity. And of course there are elements stored that make the latter possible, language etc. And regarding speed, see en.wikipedia.org/wiki/… $\endgroup$ – Fizz Mar 27 at 3:25
  • $\begingroup$ Hi, Luca, and welcome to the site. I'm voting to close this question because I'm not sure what you're asking. What exactly do you mean by "a thought"? Thoughts can be simple (e.g. "my arm itches", exceedingly complex (something taking up a lot of 'working memory'), and everything in between. Sometimes the body takes an action before the brain - in a thought - acknowledges a problem (e.g. anything involving spinal reflexes), but mostly I agree with @steveLangsford that most "thoughts" are real time events. $\endgroup$ – anongoodnurse Mar 28 at 1:19