chapter  14
27 Pages

• 14 • Discovering, inventing, creating, and using symbols

Experiences leave memory-traces – neural processes organized in structures which reflect the experience. Concepts form when similar patterns of experiences repeatedly leave similar structures of memory-traces. Figure 40 gives an impression of how a concept, the letter B, emerges out of a mess of what at first appears to be just an unpatterned lot of dots. But it is not unpatterned – it is just that the pattern has not yet become distinct: we have not yet learned to see it for what it is. Each time the patterned stimuli reappear, the concept will be stronger and clearer.