Consciousness
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Consciousness
It's a mystery...
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Human consciousness is much more than mere brain activity

Human consciousness is much more than mere brain activity | Consciousness | Scoop.it

In Raymond Tallis' book, Aping Mankind – about which he was talking this week at the British Academy – he describes the cultural disease that afflicts us when we assume that we are nothing but a bunch of neurons.


Neuromania arises from the doctrine that consciousness is the same as brain activity or, to be slightly more sophisticated, that consciousness is just the way that we experience brain activity.


If you think the brain is a machine then you are committed to saying that composing a sublime poem is as involuntary an activity as having an epileptic fit. You will issue press releases announcing “the discovery of love” or “the seat of creativity”, stapled to images of the brain with blobs helpfully highlighted in red or blue, that journalists reproduce like medieval acolytes parroting the missives of popes. You will start to assume that the humanities are really branches of biology in an immature form.


Tallis doesn’t claim to know. He described himself as an “ontological agnostic”, the nature of consciousness being a tremendous mystery. “We just don’t know how we should think about being and how mind fits into nature. But we’ll never learn if we start out taking all the wrong paths.”

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Musician Performs Duet with Her Own Brain | TIME.com

Musician Performs Duet with Her Own Brain | TIME.com | Consciousness | Scoop.it
The cello/brainwave duet explored the relationship a performer has to the music she's playing.

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Cellist Katinka Kleijn performed both halves of a duet Sunday night. Her hands played the cello, and her brain, hooked up to a headset that detects cerebral electrical signals, played itself. Kleijn has been playing the cello for 35 years. Her brain was a little less experienced.


“Intelligence in the Human Machine,” the cello/brain duet, explored the relationship a performer has to the music she’s playing. During the performance, at Chicago’s Cultural Center, Kleijn wore an Emotiv EPOC, a neuroheadset with 14 sensors that attach to the scalp and detect brainwaves. In front of her, a laptop flashed a word and a few measures of music. She then played the music on her cello, interpreting the word onscreen. At the same time, her brainwaves, translated to audio, changed sounds as she reacted to the word.


Via Wildcat2030
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