— Though we don’t how the human brain is able to transcend from the data processing layer (where the brain too is just processing low level data coming in from the senses) to the realm of knowledge we can, through introspection, examine the structure of the end product of our thought processes, that is knowledge itself.
What we find is a collection of ideas that are connected through various relationships that are themselves ideas. While many of these ideas represent specific objects in the real world, that tree, this car and so forth, many are abstractions, trees, cars. Each idea is connected to many others, some of which define its properties and some its relationship to others ideas. The power of abstract ideas as opposed to ideas representing particular things is that they are reusable. They can become components of new ideas. Complex concepts are built out of fundamentals.