In order to maintain homeostasis organisms must react to unpredicted physical and social events by focussing attention on ongoing interactions, experiment with reactions and learn from feedback.
Changing and/or focusing attention is a function of discernment of irregularity (Novelty Bias) evaluated by emotion. Emotion is the physiological homeodynamic response to immediate or potential disruption of homeostasis and it is expressed as instinct subconsciously and as feeling consciously. Emotion in that sense grounds all cognitive processes in biologic value, prioritizes cognitive attention, motivates action and gives memories dynamic valances.
Experimentation and learning from interaction in the environment is the function of dynamic predictive inference that updates working memory with error corrections. Working memory is the short term conscious inference of regularity with a homeodynamic valence. Intrinsic memory is the long term unconscious association of regularity with a homeodynamic valence.
The accumulated errors of external inferential process and working memory are used by internal inferential processes in slow wave and REM sleep to thermodynamically simplify and homeodynamically evaluate the associations of intrinsic memory and reconstitute them into updated unconscious but accessible semantic, episodic and procedural memory. This is subjectively experienced as dreaming; a core self disoriented in place and time (because there is no external sensory input) within a virtual reality of reconstituting memories.
The core self is the default mode network, the constant internal process of homeodynamic inferential justification of intrinsic memory with working memory.
Consciousness is initiated upon waking by synchronizing external sensory inferential process with the core self process in an internal virtual reality of memory. That synthesis is subjectively experienced as a self acting within a virtual reality oriented to place and time with the serial ability to imagine past and future scenarios (DMN) or to attend and act on sensory input (external inference).
That facilitates the potential to internally simulate actions before initiating them in the environment. Immediate feedback from actions in the environment effectively enables real time learning and adaptation.
So learning occurs at two levels; in short term memory from ongoing predictive inference with the environment and in unconscious long term memory from internal inference of prediction errors in dreams. Transforming knowledge learned from predictive inference into unconscious memory allows organisms to react to predicted and unpredicted processes simultaneously along with the serial ability to imagine future scenarios or act on them.
If adaptation to predicted process is unconscious and adaptation to unpredicted process is conscious then biological organisms have individual cognition, individual consciousness, social cognition and social consciousness. Humans have all those types of cognition along with an extended social consciousness.
A. Individual cognition is the neurological expression of an individual organism's adaptation to predictable processes in the environment. It is the inference of perception and autonomic motor control acting with procedural memory for orientation in the physical environmental present. Individual cognition is unconscious although it is experienced by individual consciousness proprioceptively.
B. Individual consciousness is the cognitive expression of an individual's adaptation to uncertainty. It is the cognition of reactions to unexpected events in the physical environment; attention, inferential experimentation and learning within working memory. Individual consciousness is active when emotion determines that a change in cognitive attention is required in order to maintain physiological homeostasis.
C. Social cognition is the individual cognitive expression of adaptation to predictable social processes. It is a function of inference of social perception acting with semantic memory for orientation in the social environmental present. Social cognition is unconscious although it is experienced by social consciousness proprioceptively.
D. Social consciousness is the individual cognitive expression of the collective adaptation of a species to entropy. It is the cognition of socially modified adaptive behavior that requires communication or cooperation between individuals at any level. Social consciousness is the dynamic inference of social perception with semantic memory based on a social virtual reality. It is driven by the emotional homeodynamic response to immediate or potential social disruption of homeostasis or a hormonally induced imbalance naturally selected to produce instinctual procreative, parental and subsistence co-behavior. Social consciousness is active when emotion determines that a change in cognitive attention is required in order to maintain internal and social homeostasis.
E. Extended consciousness is the individual cognitive expression of the collective human adaptation to entropy. Extended consciousness is continually active in the waking state and is a function of dynamic inference of social perception for predictive experimentation based on a time based socially constructed virtual reality. The use of the embodied syntax of language instantiates knowledge into technology and creates a shared consciousness of culture. It is grounded by emotional homeodynamic response to potential social disruption of homeostasis or selected hormonal imbalance.