Dreams: the cortex never stops. Our brain’s more expensive in each state of excitement.When we are wakeful our experience provides input to model-building, prediction, and auto-association. Without external stimuli, hippocampal memory rehearsal (storage) creates auto association.
Long term memory is produced by rehearsal within ~24hrs of the experience. This is why trauma drugs work if taken immediately after the event. During wakefulness we aren’t aware of the ‘distributor’ behavior of the thalamus. It stores novel episodes by auto-associative rehearsal.
So just sensory suppression, leaving homeostatic monitoring, hippocampal episodic rehearsal, causes auto-association at lower levels of excitement, shorter information distance, lighter recursions, without ‘correction’ by external streams OR our attention.
Advances in brain science in the past ten years alone have been as great as advances in genetics in the same period.The mystery is gone.The missing clue was that all fragments of perception are calculated by relative spatial position thus solving the big problem of consciousness.
So that is why people like me or joscha bach are demonstrating the new model of thought that means an understanding of neural networks is as important to the soft sciences as math is to the hard sciences.