"Secrets of Snow-Diving Foxes"
Snow-diving foxes hunt snow-bound mice by aligning with magnetic field of the earth. NDT theory posits that the electromagnetic principles by which proto-cells evolved into living, replicating cells, continued to evolve into how living beings interact with each other. It became the basis of emotion via the prey/predator dynamic. In other words, how an animal makes a living, determines how it lives socially with the principles of motion, thermodynamics and electromagnetism serving as behavioral code. All animals feel energy the same way, and therefore this commonality is the most parsimonious explanation for the phenomena of communication and connection which characterizes the evolution of intelligent life. Such principles are clearly visible in animal behavior through an immediate-moment manner of analysis. Therefore the emotional affects by which wolves are informed how to hunt successfully, and the emotional affects by which wolves are informed how to live sociably, which then became the basis of domestication, evolved from electromagnetic principles of far simpler prey-making strategies. In short, a very real magnetic force that shapes the hunt evolved into emotional affects that shape the group that thereby enable a more complex manner of hunting. Social values as enabled and executed by emotional affects, make individuals perceive and respond just as if they are electromagnetically charged particles of consciousness.
I'm often asked for the science behind NDT and my response is that the findings are already in. However the research has either been misinterpreted or the significance of a given experiment missed (Pavlov being the most glaring example). The recent finding for instance, that dogs when eliminating prefer to align with the north/south axis of the earth's magnetic field, all things being equal, shows that magnetism has a very real and to date unrecognized effect on canine behavior. The behavioral world didn't take note of this important finding thinking that it must mean nothing more than how a dog lines up to eliminate. The possibility that it might be a clue to a larger model, especially given that billions of organisms travel trillions of miles in vast migratory exoduses by dint of the earth's magnetic field, isn't taken into consideration. Behaviorism takes the de facto position that this incredible biological impulse stopped evolving right at that point. Meanwhile the mainstream mostly saw scatological humor in it. However perhaps the significance of this second study (linked above) will draw more attention.
In my model of the animal mind, the negative-(i.e. eyes)-grants-access-to-the-positive( i.e. body). Therefore where the prey is looking determines whether or not its body is OPEN, which means vulnerable to predation.
Whereas if the prey is looking at the predator.....
then the access channel is CLOSED.
Eye contact is inextricably linked with an internal emotional circuit, the focal gaze projects where the objects' p-cog is going to be and thus the predator can feel where the prey is going to be (given the rate of acceleration affiliated with its degree of muscle tension, a "Pavlovian Equivalency.") The predator can calculate (by feel) whether it can intercept the prey before it makes it to cover. The classic cat and mouse stalking strategy.
Meanwhile the prey can run the numbers the other way around so as to avoid being intercepted on its way to cover. In the case of the snow-diving fox, the eyes of the prey are hidden, mice are small and presumably unaware the fox is above it, and so on every level the access channel is indeed wide open.
As referenced above, my theory is that this negative-as-access-to-positive rule of prey-making (a principle of conductivity) evolved into the governing principle of social behavior. All interactions work through this same emotional dynamic. It's not just about predation, it's about vulnerability in all its many forms no matter how high the level of elaboration. At first this might seem radical but to date no one has challenged my notion that the oldest relationship between organisms is the prey/predator dynamic. So therefore if Darwin's theory of common descent is true, the prey/predator dynamic as the basis of all interactions is a conservative notion. Also, why is it in any other system of interpretation of animal behavior we merely end up with a human narrative injected into the animal mind, with concepts such as dominance, submission, survival, territoriality, protectiveness, learning by cause and effect, etc., etc? Or on the other hand the treatment is wholly a neurochemical, neurological, nuts and bolts animal-mind-as-a-machine. Why don't we get a true internal treatment that captures a fundamentally different construct of reality instead of what WE WOULD BE THINKING if we were in that same situation? To date, the only solution to the Descartes dilemma has been to project human thoughts into the minds of animals. Whereas an immediate-moment manner of analysis discerns a systems logic to why animals do what they do, one which follows energetic principles of conductivity and common design (see "Design In Nature") and which redresses the Descartes' problem without turning animals into furry people, and most especially, is wholly consistent with Darwin's theory of common descent as well as the conservation of information in the evolution of organisms.
Emotion is a systems logic not an individuated one. This is why in the beginning of the meet-and-greet, head-to-head/eye-to-eye contact is such a charged affair, it's just like putting the same two poles of a battery into contact with each other. Sparks and fur could fly.
However when one being looks directly at another, by being the Object-of-Attention, this triggers physical memories in the Object.
If the Object feels the body of the Subject is OPEN (displaying preyful aspects)
then emotion flows (the physical memory of physical movement as replicated by emotional affects).
Thus the Object's body/mind feels as if it is being energized by a current; i.e. its front-end-is-connected-to-its-hind-end because the negative-has-granted-access-to-the-positive. The affected dog feels as if his center mass is in its hind end, poised to accelerate.
And as long as the dog FEELS grounded into the body of the other dog, it can stay subliminally focused on its hind end, and keep its feeling of center mass rooted there (rather than throwing itself into forward motion, especially when the access channel is not open ENOUGH TO ACCOMMODATE THAT RATE OF ACCELERATION and which would then produce the proverbial sparks due to the Subject not being able yet to absorb this momentum). The poised dog will thereby exhibit a collected body deportment and this state of body/mind calms the other dog because he doesn't feel accelerated (without a complementary feeling of being grounded), i.e. acted upon by an external force that knocks him out of equilibrium.
What allows the individual to remain rooted in its hind end (i.e. aware of a sensual feeling down there, and which I believe then makes the Enteric Nervous System the architect of its subsequent behavior) is that it can sustain its perception of preyful aspects in the Subject, and this is equivalent to the ingestion of nutrient from its very earliest days of life. This is the electric-like current I've diagrammed above, indicative of wave-like smooth muscle peristaltic motion that permeates the entire body, especially through a deep rhythmic breathing pattern that effects a high vagal tone so that the body is sensed as embodying a smooth wave action, another Pavlovian Equivalency (PE) from the imprint of nursing that was registered in the newborn phase of life. Therefore the dog doesn't feel as compelled to move forward because that deep emotional memory of positive flow has made his rear end feel sensual and he will subsequently try to act in a way that will sustain if not heighten that whole body feeling of a wave which radiates from the sensual hind end. (Recall that the mother would lick the anal/genital area in order to clean the pup, knocking it off balance and causing it to squeal which was then calmed by nursing. This is the imprint which completes the connection of front-end-to-hind-end, inculcating the primary emotional circuit as the means for making social contact, another PE. Holding back is self-rewarding by way of such memories, just as Pavlov's dog would salivate at the ringing of a bell with no meat present. The bell became indicative of a reward in its own right.) So the dog will self-modify in order to induce the Subject to increase the sensual feeling rooted in its hind end.
The positive physical memories enable social behavior as the individual feels flow just by remaining poised to act. (Inversely, this means that the Subject feels that it is in control of the Object because it perceives that by it not moving, this causes the Object to collect and hold back. So everything in a dog's construct of reality is based on feedback and then auto-tuning according to the principle of emotional conductivity as implemented by Pavlovian Equivalencies and effected by emotional affects.) In this case the eye contact of the Subject becomes sensually arousing for the Object rather than destabilizing (which would then require the individual to immediately act in order to restore equilibrium. It's important to note that a dog doesn't distinguish between physical balance and emotional equilibrium, another PE.) We could say that the Subject's focal gaze takes on a magnetic affect on the Object so that he will feel a tendency toward deflection due to its sensual awareness of the sensitivity of the other dog. In other words, if our Object pushes too strong toward the Subject and the latter becomes electric like, that will cause the Object to immediately check itself from shifting its weight forward since that will jar with the sensual feeling of subliminally focusing on his hind end.
The important thing is that the neurology, the neuro-chemicals, the hormones are not the all important variables, logic statements such as negative-grants-access-to-positive are paramount because these are the predicate of the neurology, neuro-chemicals and hormones, just as logic statements are the predicates of all computer/internet hardware and software evolution. These logic statements derive from the first principles of physics. (This is why if a learning theorist uses the eye contact technique they are implicitly rejecting the operating principle of Operant Conditioning as a basis for learning. They are unknowingly acknowledging that appealing to an underlying logic statement by which the animal mind is organized, i.e. negative-as-access-to-the-positive, is more effective and fundamental than learning by reinforcement.)
What has prevented sparks and fur from flying is that as the two individuals feel in control of their respective partner by being collected (feeling of center mass in hind end) this then allows them to soften their forequarters as they are no longer worried about sustaining vertical or lateral stability. This then allows them to move about by pivoting around their forequarters (along every plane), and with such a loose body conformation they are able to move in a supple manner so as to come into sync (making one wave pattern instead of an interference pattern) no matter what the other dog does and they will gradually be able to do this at a higher and higher rate of change wherein they actually do exchange their physical centers of gravity. This then leads them into a new level of elaboration as the strength of the wave that emerges by their mutually syncopated movements then serves to smooth out the deeper stress memories that come up to the surface as their interaction gets more and more intense. In other words, in the first phase of the interaction the question is which individual is going to absorb the momentum so as to establish a direction of flow. The little-brain-in-the-gut and the power of physical memory solves that questions with the state of being collected. So we have two batteries creating one flow circuit. And now during this new phase of a back and forth exchange of momentum and p-cogs, with the wave pattern absorbing all the force as the dogs are able to pivot freely around their forequarters, this is now two dogs as one electromagnetic dynamo, resolving unresolved emotion so as to make NEW ENERGY. (E-->UE-->RE)
Therefore with front-end-connected-to-hind-end, just as an electrical current generates a magnetic force, then there is no feeling of resistance between them (their shoulders are relaxed), such a feeling of flow mutually arrived at then allows them to flip and to flop at higher and higher rates of speed, each one occupying one end of the wave pattern in all the planes of possible movement so that their syncopated movements inscribe a circle as they mirror each other. Eventually this feeling of movement can become so strong as older and deeper memories of stress are reconverted back to flow, that the Object feels no barrier of separation from the Subject. The Object feels as if the Subject is a part of its Self, the same holding true for the Subject as well. Thus we observe two selves becoming one Self, each the equal/opposite complementary pole to the other, just as dipoles of the same magnet. They will then seek to incorporate new objects of resistance into this wave pattern (configuration) in order to sustain the good feeling (persist ala Constructal Law).
Furthermore, as this feeling of a Self integrates the individual's body/mind into a complex social system that comes to revolve around an object-of-resistance that can absorb the COMBINED ENERGIES. A scattering of individual focal
gazes becomes organized when the individual within that group manifests the Most-Intense predatory-aspect-as-access-to-flow, and is construed as if it is the needle in the compass pointing to the "North Pole;" in that frame of reference it becomes the so called alpha figure.
Members of the group will align around the alphas' focal gaze and that particular individual becomes the needle pointing north, the one that has the strongest feeling for the prey, which in Pavlovian Equivalency means the one who feels most grounded in its own body. (This Direct/Active pole can shift from member to member depending on who has the strongest feeling in any given moment, because the feeling of center mass shifts within the individual depending on its relationship to the preyful aspect and whether or not it is absorbing its momentum. So this is not a hierarchy based on either rank or control-over-resources-depending-on-context. I'm talking about a hierarchy of feelings aligned around a current of emotional flow. Whoever wants the prey the most goes first, this could often be the one who first sees the prey, or is closer to the prey, or is behind the prey's rear flank because it is preoccupied with facing off another member of the group. It's completely fluid to the emotional conductivity of the moment as well as being the emotional basis of the human/canine connection and the why-and-how the dogs capacity to attune to human gaze.)
Therefore, and to return to the snow-diving foxes, it's very gratifying to see in the above research how the kind of complex social orientation I'm positing that utilizes physical memories of physical motion----which shifts where the individual feels its center mass within its body, which then activates electromagnetic-like emotional affects so that the individual feels electrically energized and then magnetically charged----and then this informs the individual how to produce complex social structures and coordinated group action with its peers---could have easily evolved from more primal forms of prey-making that actually do involve very real forces of magnetism. The snow diving fox is relating to the snow-covered mouse AS an one electromagnetically charged particle to another, just as on a higher social level of wolf pack life peers respond and learn from each other, and dog to owner Just-As-If they are electromagnetically charged particles.
The emotional affects the snow-diving fox is experiencing, are implemented by the electro-chemical activity of its Central and Enteric Nervous Systems (very real forces of electromagnetism) as it aligns its body in accord with the earth's magnetic field (another very real force of electromagnetism). This capability evolved according to principles of electromagnetism, as opposed to one fox being slightly better than another fox at snow-diving for mice until all the foxes in the species had the genes that were good at snow-diving for mice. This means that the manner by which A SPECIES of foxes evolved to be able to dive in the snow and come up with a mouse, and the manner by which AN INDIVIDUAL snow-diving fox learns how to snow-dive for mice, is THE SAME. They are both predicated on the same electromagnetic principles, not random genetic processes or learning by random reinforcement. It's not learning by trial and error because it is inevitable that snow diving foxes will tune into the earth's magnetic field, just as social beings tune into electromagnetic-like emotional affects that steer them into complex social structures. Learning in the individual fox is the same process as the evolution of fox behavior as a species, albeit the former on hyper-hyper fast track. (I suspect that the electromagnetic activity of the mouse's brain, heart and physiology slightly distorts the earth's magnetic field, just as when we holding a compass near an electrical device. The high rate of success when aligned on the north/south axis might correlate to the fact that mice prefer to move along that same axis when possible so that it is along that axis that the pounce of the fox is able to pin the mouse as it runs under the forepaws coming down the instant the mouse senses a disturbance from above, which it must surely do. (On the other hand, because it may be moving through un-burrowed snow, rather than run forward, like a deer which is surprised but doesn't know where the predator is, will about turn to escape along its back track where no predators were.) In either event, the mouse runs into the trap which is why the north/south axis proves critical.)
An energetic logic is the most parsimonious and logical interpretation of the snow-diving behavior of foxes and has now been empirically demonstrated. Can the evolution of complex social behavior in canines be any different?