by Boris Sidis

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THE power of the moment's assimilation is well brought in the activity of abnormal moments. Distressing thoughts, gloomy ideas, painful sensations, and feelings of depression form a nucleus round which other mental states become firmly organized. A delusion arises which constitutes the moment-consciousness of the melancholiac. This moment assimilates all other cognate experiences. Everything that takes place is seized on by the moment and assimilated. The patient who believes that he has no intestines, or that he is made of glass and is transparent and hence hides himself from people, as his functions are open to the sight of outsiders, such a patient will make all experiences confirm and strengthen the delusion. The delusion constituting the predominant moment-consciousness in the patient's life absorbs and assimilates most, if not all of the material that gains access to the patient's psychic life. The moment like a cancerous growth expands, grows, and develops at the expense of other moments, starves them by cutting off their mental food supply. What cannot be used by the moment is rejected as waste material.

A similar state of affairs we meet with in paranoia, as well as in many paranoidal states of a purely psychopathic character. A moment-consciousness is formed of high organizing and assimilating power. Any experience relevant and irrelevant entering consciousness is greedily absorbed and assimilated. Any flitting thought, any passing impression is worked in and organized into the moment. All other moments fall a prey to this dominant all-absorbing moment.
In some cases the assimilating capacity of the moment seems to be limitless. In fact, the more it assimilates, the greater grows its craving and capacity for getting more material. The most trivial facts, the slightest sense-impressions all are pressed into the service of the despotically ruling moment. The insignificant becomes significant and points to the central delusion.

In other cases the limit of the process of assimilation soon reaches its maximum point, more psychic material is rejected by the moment. Such conditions are to be found in various states of dissociation manifested in different forms of psychopathic diseases. The moment's capacity for assimilating new material is of limited range, soon reaches its utmost bounds and loses for the time being all capacity for further assimilation. Such states may be found in amnesia. The moment is then said to be dissociated from the main current of psychic life-activity. Specific stimuli under definite conditions are requisite to resuscitate the moment and arouse its power of assimilation.
It is certainly interesting and instructive to study the fluctuations of the moment's power of assimilation in abnormal mental states. In some forms of mental diseases and general psychic derangements the moment may be of ephemeral and unstable character; it may dissolve soon after its birth. Such conditions are to be found in various forms of maniacal states and in the initial stages of many cases of general paresis.

In psychomotor manifestations of a psychopathic character moments-consciousness are often formed and dissolved like soap-bubbles. The investigation of them is of the utmost interest and value. In hypnosis moments of such a nature may be experimentally induced and studied. The whole process can thus be followed through all the stages of evolution and dissolution.



Chapter I. The Moment Consciousness
Chapter II. Types of Moments and Moment-Threshold
Chapter III. Modifications of Moments in the Organized Aggregate
Chapter IV. Mental Organization
Chapter V. The Growth and Function of the Moment
Chapter VI. The Relation of the Moment to the Environment
Chapter VII. The Assimilation of the Moment in Normal States
Chapter VIII. Abnormal Moments
Chapter IX. Mental Continuity and the Psychic Gap
Chapter X. The Moment-Threshold
Chapter XI. the Process of Moment-Disaggregation
Chapter XII. Reproduction and the Reflex Moment
Chapter XIII. Desultory Consciousness
Chapter XIV. The Synthetic Moment and its Reproduction
Chapter XV. The Accumulative Character of the Synthetic Moment
Chapter XVI. The Simple and Compound Synthetic Moment
Chapter XVII. The Desultory Type in Pathological States
Chapter XVIII. Presentations and Representations
Chapter XIX. Representations and The Laws of Their Combinations
Chapter XX. Representation and Recognition
Chapter XXI. The Recognitive Moment and Its Reproduction
Chapter XX. Representation and Recognition
Chapter XXI. The Recognitive Moment and Its Reproduction
Chapter XXII. The Synthetic Recognitive Moment
Chapter XXIII. The Synthetic Moment of Self-Consciousness

Product Details

BN ID: 2940011900723
Publisher: Leila's Books
Publication date: 11/29/2010
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Sales rank: 1,091,564
File size: 488 KB

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