Consciousness
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Consciousness
It's a mystery...
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What's the Universe Made Of? Math, Says Scientist

What's the Universe Made Of? Math, Says Scientist | Consciousness | Scoop.it

Scientists have long used mathematics to describe the physical properties of the universe. But what if the universe itself is math? That's what cosmologist Max Tegmark believes.

In Tegmark's view, everything in the universe — humans included — is part of a mathematical structure. All matter is made up of particles, which have properties such as charge and spin, but these properties are purely mathematical, he says. And space itself has properties such as dimensions, but is still ultimately a mathematical structure.

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"Consciousness is probably the way information feels when it's being processed in certain, very complicated ways," Tegmark said. He pointed out that many great breakthroughs in physics have involved unifying two things once thought to be separate: energy and matter, space and time, electricity and magnetism. He said he suspects the mind, which is the feeling of a conscious self, will ultimately be unified with the body, which is a collection of moving particles.

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Embodied identity--a deeper understanding of body awareness.

A key point was the fact that bodily experiences always exists in the present moment. The experience of the body, the balance, and stability of the physical self were basic experiences that were connected to the conception of well-being and control. To understand one's emotions and needs through the awareness of the body were understood as the base for self-confidence, trust in one-self, and the ability to take care of oneself and one's needs physically and mentally. The subcategory "living in relation to others and in society" was conceived as an important aspect for the embodied self to interact with others and for societal participation. Working with the body in physiotherapy practice should include an understanding that body awareness is inseparable from the identity and may have an impact on the health of the individual.

 

full-text content from PubMed Central and publisher web sites.

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Burgaliere Corinne's curator insight, December 3, 2013 6:42 AM

Body , mind and soul!...

Le corps et ses experiences  sont les racines de l'equilibre!

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Soul Spelunker: A Critique of Rugged Individualism

Soul Spelunker: A Critique of Rugged Individualism | Consciousness | Scoop.it

We carry multiple Beings in our Souls because we carry each other and the world. The archetypes are all of us, all the myriad types and styles of Beings that compose our world, human and non-human. We really are the world and the world is us. The idea that we must integrate into a central and strictly human Self seems to be a desire to retain the Western sense of individuality and Ego, and the attitude of superiority of human over non-human.


The sense of individuality we possess makes us susceptible to denying the sense of self to non-human beings:


For individuals in industrialized society, the sense of self is felt to be and understood to exist within the confines of that person. Further, the only beings that are assumed to possess this sort of subjectivity are humans; other beings, lacking this subjectivity, become an other and as such, are of lesser value. Moreover, any point of view which does understand nonhuman beings as possessing an individual self charged with spirit, soul and intelligence is dismissively accused of animism or of anthropomorphizing the outer world. Animism is defined by Freud as nothing but the projection of primitive man’s emotional impulses. As a result of that sweeping assumption, the whole of the highly complex, sensuous and intelligent natural world is reduced to mindless things, blank screens. But by declaring ourselves the only beings with intelligence and a sense of self, we have, in many ways, placed ourselves in a vulnerable position (Rocky Greene, What does the Individuation Process have to do with the Earth?).

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How Does It Feel To Have Half a Brain? Not Bad, Actually

How Does It Feel To Have Half a Brain? Not Bad, Actually | Consciousness | Scoop.it

Roger, “who is self-aware – despite lacking three regions of the brain thought to be essential for self-awareness – demonstrates that the mind remains as elusive as ever,” says Douglas Heaven in New Scientist.

 

The finding suggests that mental functions might not be tied to fixed brain regions. Instead, the mind might be more like a virtual machine running on distributed computers, with brain resources allocated in a flexible manner.

 

http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn22205-location-of-the-mind-remains-a-mystery.html

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Epistemology and Fourth Order Consciousness - Interview with Robert Kegan

Epistemology and Fourth Order Consciousness - Interview with Robert Kegan | Consciousness | Scoop.it

And this realization is what promotes the transformation from the fourth to the fifth order of consciousness. So, you start to build a way of constructing the world that is much more friendly to contradiction, to oppositeness, to being able to hold on to multiple systems of thinking. You begin to see that the life project is not about continuing to defend one formation of the self but about the ability to have the self literally be transformative. This means that the self is more about movement through different forms of consciousness than about the defending and identifying with any one form.

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What are the structural differences in the brain between animals that are self-aware (humans, apes) and other vertebrates?

What are the structural differences in the brain between animals that are self-aware (humans, apes) and other vertebrates? | Consciousness | Scoop.it

If we assume that the prefrontal cortex permits metacognition, then the answer is simple: species that fail to demonstrate metacognition tend to lack brain areas that resemble the prefron­tal cortex. But because this area serves many cognitive functions and is well connected to the rest of the brain, the region is probably not the sole locus of metacognition. In other words, the prefrontal cortex may be necessary but not sufficient for self-awareness. Some psychologists speculate that self-awareness may arise in animals with greater overall cognitive ability, larger brain size or a higher degree of connectivity among brain areas.

Identifying the precise structural differences that make some creatures self-aware and others not is quite challenging. Most important, it is difficult to pinpoint and compare subtle structural differences across species in the face of more dramatic differences in brain morphology. For example, dolphins and chimpanzees both demonstrate metacognition, but their brains look completely different.

 

By Robert O. Duncan | Scientific American

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Consciousness, Qualia, and Self (V.S. Ramachandran)

Dr. V.S. Ramachandran, Director of the Center for Brain and Cognition at UCSD, discusses consciousness, qualia, and self.
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Virtual Ego

"Alan Watts. If ego = control, then the formula for enlightenment is:

 

Develop and grasp at self-control until you reach complete frustration and then realize the contradictions and true nature of self-control, or self-guidance.

 

Striving for a type of self-control that is subtlely, inherently impossible builds up into complete frustration, until out of this mud, the lotus of re-conceptualization blooms.

 

This is the true heart of ego transcendence.

After ego death and ego transcendence, how big and powerful is the ego? Bigger and more powerful than ever, the ghost who remains after ego death."

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Heart in your Hand? Neuroscientists discover a new illusion of consciousness

Heart in your Hand? Neuroscientists discover a new illusion of consciousness | Consciousness | Scoop.it

A new study by Dr. Keisuke Suzuki, Professor Anil Seth, and colleagues at the Sackler Centre – published in the journalNeuropsychologia - now shows that external visualization of one’s heartbeat can influence what we experience as our own body.

 

The team used a unique combination of heartbeat monitoring and augmented reality to implement a ‘cardio-visual’ version of the rubber hand illusion. Participants wore a ‘head mounted display’ through which they saw a virtual-reality version of their own hand projected in front of them, while their real hand remained hidden out of view.  The virtual hand was made to pulse to red and back either in-time or out-of-time with their heartbeat.

 

The researchers found that the virtual hand was more likely to be experienced as part of a person’s body when the ‘cardio-visual’ feedback was aligned with the actual heartbeat, than when it was misaligned. This shows that the brain integrates its perception of the body from the outside with its perception from the inside, in determining what is experienced as its body.

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Ruth Obadia's curator insight, September 7, 2013 3:57 PM

The use of new technologies to address old questions highlights the innovative approach to consciousness science adopted by Sackler Centre researchers, and future projects will use similar augmented reality methods to further push the boundaries of how we experience ourselves and the world around us.

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The Self Illusion: How Our Social Brain Constructs Who We Are

The Self Illusion: How Our Social Brain Constructs Who We Are | Consciousness | Scoop.it

"Each morning, we wake up and experience a rich explosion of consciousness — the bright morning sunlight, the smell of roast coffee and, for some of us, the warmth of the person lying next to us in bed. As the slumber recedes into the night, we awake to become who we are. The morning haze of dreams and oblivion disperses and lifts as recognition and recall bubble up the content of our memories into our consciousness. For the briefest of moments we are not sure who we are and then suddenly ‘I,’ the one that is awake, awakens. We gather our thoughts so that the ‘I’ who is conscious becomes the ‘me’ — the person with a past. The memories of the previous day return. The plans for the immediate future reformulate. The realization that we have things to get on with remind us that it is a workday. We become a person whom we recognize.


The call of nature tells us it is time to visit the bathroom and en route we glance at the mirror. We take a moment to reflect. We look a little older, but we are still the same person who has looked in that same mirror every day since we moved in. We see our self in that mirror. This is who we are.


The daily experience of the self is so familiar, and yet the brain science shows that this sense of the self is an illusion. Psychologist Susan Blackmore makes the point that the word ‘illusion’ does not mean that it does not exist — rather, an illusion is not what it seems. We all certainly experience some form of self, but what we experience is a powerful depiction generated by our brains for our own benefit."


The Self Illusion: How the Social Brain Creates Identity - Bruce Hood

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Carl Jung’s Archetypes | Wired Cosmos

Carl Jung’s Archetypes | Wired Cosmos | Consciousness | Scoop.it

In order to understand archetypes we must understand the nature and function of the collective unconscious. According to Jung, the collective unconscious is not like the personal unconscious as first introduced by psychoanalysis. It is detached from the personal unconscious because it belongs to the human species as a whole. It is inherited, just as physical aspects of our bodies are inherited. Because of this, a human being does not enter the world as a blank slate but rather with the innate and inherited tendencies of the collective unconscious. These tendencies are what Jung termed “archetypes.”


Via Fico Ventilatory, Mariana Soffer
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Healing through the dark emotions

Healing through the dark emotions | Consciousness | Scoop.it

….When I say we are “intervulnerable,” I mean we suffer together, whether consciously or unconsciously. Albert Einstein called the idea of a separate self an “optical delusion of consciousness.” Martin Luther King Jr. said that we are all connected in an “inescapable web of mutuality.” There’s no way out, though we try to escape by armoring ourselves against pain and in the process diminishing our lives and our consciousness. But in our intervulnerability is our salvation, because awareness of the mutuality of suffering impels us to search for ways to heal the whole, rather than encase ourselves in a bubble of denial and impossible individualism. At this point in history, it seems that we will either destroy ourselves or find a way to build a sustainable life together.

 

Miriam Greenspan - excerpts from a Sun Magazine

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Recognizing the Significance of Consciousness

Recognizing the Significance of Consciousness | Consciousness | Scoop.it

The startling amazingness of consciousness self-evident to people who recognize it vividly — they can see that they are conscious and they can see that consciousness is something really special — something formless, empty, unfathomable, and even transcendental or mystical in nature. It transcends the body and the mind, it transcends the physical material world, it transcends thoughts and emotions. It is more fundamental than anything. It seems to be the ultimate fabric of reality itself.

 

When consciousness is directly recognized to this extent, it is obvious that consciousness is not a process or a substance or anything material or reducible for that matter – and it takes place in a completely different dimension from everything else — it’s not mediated by one particular sense or even by the cognitive faculty that thinks thoughts. It is a necessary condition for all of the senses and the mind, but it’s not identical to any of them. It’s something else altogether.

 

by Nova Spivack - Minding the Planet

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Magic Mushrooms Expand the Mind By Dampening Brain Activity, May Help Depression | Healthland | TIME.com

Magic Mushrooms Expand the Mind By Dampening Brain Activity, May Help Depression | Healthland | TIME.com | Consciousness | Scoop.it

Based on this idea, Huxley posited that ordinary consciousness represents only a fraction of what the mind can take in. In order to keep us focused on survival, Huxley claimed, the brain must act as a “reducing valve” on the flood of potentially overwhelming sights, sounds and sensations. What remains, Huxley wrote, is a “measly trickle of the kind of consciousness” necessary to “help us to stay alive.”

 

A new study by British researchers supports this theory. It shows for the first time how psilocybin — the drug contained in magic mushrooms — affects the connectivity of the brain. Researchers found that the psychedelic chemical, which is known to trigger feelings of oneness with the universe and a trippy hyperconsciousness, does not work by ramping up the brain’s activity as they’d expected. Instead, it reduces it.

 

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Output consciousness

Output consciousness | Consciousness | Scoop.it

"Another striking example might be Libet’s notorious finding that consciousness of a decision arrives some time after the decision itself – but of course it does! The decision is an event in processes of which consciousness is the output."

 

"It’s hard to see consciousness as an output, partly because it can also be an input, but also because we identify ourselves with our thoughts. We want to believe that we ourselves enjoy agency, that we have causal effects, and so we’re inclined to believe that our thoughts are what does the trick – although we know quite well that when we move our arm it’s not thinking about it that makes it happen. This supposed identity of thoughts and self (after all, it’s because I think, that I am, isn’t it?) is so strong that some, failing to find in their thoughts anything but fleeting bundles of momentary impressions , have concluded there is no self after all. I think that level of scepticism is unwarranted: it’s just that our selves remain inscrutably shadowed to direct conscious observation. “Know thyself”, said the inscription on the temple of the Delphic oracle – alas, ultimately we can’t."

 

via Conscious Entities 

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