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For a long time, the question of consciousness itself has been kept off the table, and cannot be ignored any longer, as any breakthrough in science points to reality being subjective.
If we look at objects in the universe in terms of atoms, we will come to the conclusion that some atoms form objects that become conscious, while others don’t. It is difficult for science to suddenly explain away consciousness, something they have neglected for eons. The explanatory gap is too big if they acknowledge consciousness.
The very things that are taken for granted or are overlooked hold the key to the understanding of life and consciousness. The things we find in nature cannot be imagined by us by any stretch of the imagination.
Example: A delicate, complex living organism, which can reproduce itself indefinitely.
Conceiving life while not being alive seems inconceivable, but as an analogy, how can vision be created from processes that are themselves blind?
The complicated chain of processes does point out that there is some higher intelligence/consciousness that operates on a different level, which may be out of our reach.
Our brain studies the colour, contours, motion, location of an object, but for consciousness, everything has to arise in seamless unity, all at once, to be able to be experienced.
We have a lot of unanswered questions about sleep, memories, duplication of the self, and other things that are puzzling to science.
Science has to acknowledge consciousness, through deep foundation, inquiry, motivation and introspection, directly, or it may not be discovered at all.
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Quantum mechanics and modern physics (like string theory) has made the concept of physical reality and the tangible, solid universe a fluid and slippery concept.
Those who are trying to find consciousness in the physical world are stuck in the past, as consciousness may have nothing to do with the brain or the subjective reality.
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What is it about brain matter that gives rise to consciousness? In particular, the neuronal correlates of consciousness (NCC) - the minimal neuronal mechanisms jointly sufficient for any conscious experience.
Consider this question: What must happen in your brain for you to experience a toothache?
The whole brain can be considered an NCC because it generates experience continually.