When the slug body has been built up it constitutes a biological individual and is reacting
upon the environmental pressure. How are the cells being ruled by the superior function, i.e.
how is its “will” mediated to the cells?
In normal bodies the influence of the superior function is mediated by chemical feedback,
chemical signals of different kind among others.
Within the slug there can hardly exist such in a developed manner. It is difficult for me to
imagine that the slug would be able to develop any simple function that would correspond to
functions of normal bodies, but I can neither exclude it.
It is hopeless for me to try to come any further in the discussion and to establish any scenarios
concerning the slime molds. I have to restrict myself to state that the operation control from
the superior function is functioning through some chemical or other communication that in
turn causes the slug to continue its simple program.
Even the reactions of the cells upon the communication of the superior function ought to be
investigated. There must be something that at the slime molds is substituting the management
of normal bodies. Which force is activated? How are the cells being activated?
As a hypothesis I can propose e.g. the following: At the cells maybe such a force can have
been established in connection with the level rise and the transition into altruism. The
example with Bettelheims prisoners may point to a part of the answer. When their situation
became catastrophic they abandoned their selfishness and became altruistic. They were
captured by an euphoric feeling in that they gave up all their private concerns and that feeling
sufficed in just that case as long as the catastrophic situation endured. A correspondence to
that feeling on an elementary, almost molecular level can have developed among the cells and
became activated in connection with the operation control by the superior function. This
hypothetic euphoria on the molecular level may be the “reward” the superior function is using
in order to manage the cells. (Cf. Ch. 11). The both examples seem to that extent similar due
to their basic elements that maybe one has to search for the explanation in that direction.
Our activities we use to describe in terms of behaviour, even though it is obvious that
everything has an outermost ground. It would be considered meaningless by us to search for
the molecular biological connections in human actions. It is therefore, according to my
opinion, not wrong to describe cell activities in connection with level rises in terms of
behaviour as long as their behaviour can be discerned and judged. I think that this is possible
just with respect to the level rising activities of the slime molds. Therefore I have made some
intellectual experiments starting from their hypothetic feelings and consciousness.
The degrees of freedom of these cells are a necessary prerequisite for meaningful intellectual
experiments to be performed. The functions of normal bodies on the contrary can not be
elucidated similarly through feeling insight or observation and the reason is that everything
occurs conformable to law, without degrees of freedom.
Which conditions are valid for the relationship between the cells and the superior function?
As a hypothesis one might think of the functions of the cells as divided into an external and an
internal side, which does not mean that those parts shall be regarded as physically apart, but
with respect to their functions. This division can facilitate the understanding of how the slug
is ruling the cells.
The external part of the slug includes these reactions upon the environmental pressure. At the
external part of the cells the environmental pressure is being replaced by the rule the superior
function is performing. How about the internal side of the slug then? To this I count the
communication that takes place to the external part of the cells.
When I am talking about “rule” and “actions”, it is of course a question of programmed
courses. That can become changed over time according to the doctrine of evolution.
Because the system includes degrees of freedom one can allow an intellectual experiment
concerning the consciousness of of cells and bodies. That hypothetical consciousness would
be thought of as existing within the external part of the slug and be due to the environmental
pressure. Besides, in that case also a corresponding consciousness would exist with respect to
the impulses from the superior function of the slug.
The cells perceive the slug only through its rule, its “orders” which they perceive as instincts.
Any apprehension of the slug as such, or of the outer world with respect to the slug, is not
conceivable by the cells.
The contact between the slug and the cells is one-way, from the slug to the cell. Contacts in
the opposite direction are not possible, since the slug belongs to a higher level.
The relationship between the external and the external parts of the slug and the cells
respectively can be visualized through the aid of Picture 5. The whole lapse is contained
within every cell, but by practical reasons it must be recorded with the slug and the cells
In the picture it has been marked that the communication is one-way.