Scientists call consciousness “the hard problem” because they have no idea where it comes from, and they have trouble even defining what it is. Scientific American has put out a special issue called “Innovations In: The Biggest Questions in Science,” which is a collection of articles on the state of play in modern scientific investigations of things like spacetime, dark matter, consciousness, and how life began. Incredibly, every one of these articles is full of abject nonsense! Scientists still really have no clue about any of these phenomena, and from brief glimpses of their state of play it isn’t hard to see why: in every case, assumptions are made that ground the question at hand in matter, and of course in every case these phenomenon do not arise from matter.
What they have to say about consciousness is typical. You won’t be able to read these sentences without wincing. “What is it about a highly excitable piece of brain matter that gives rise to consciousness? Once we can understand that, we hope to get closer to solving the more fundamental problem… What must happen in your brain for you to experience a toothache, for example? Must some nerve cells vibrate at some magical frequency? Do some special ‘consciousness neurons’ have to be activated? In which brain regions would these cells be located?” The authors slice-and-dice through the spinal cord and then the brain, and eventually they come to deduce that “… the sights, sounds and other sensations of life as we experience it are generated by regions within the posterior cortex. As far as we can tell, almost all conscious experiences have their origin there… Indeed, the abiding mystery is how and why any highly organized piece of active matter gives rise to conscious sensation. After all, the brain is like any other organ, subject to the same physical laws as the heart or the liver. What makes it different? What is it about the biophysics of a chunk of highly excitable brain matter that turns gray goo into the glorious surround sound and Technicolor that is the fabric of everyday experience?”
What, indeed? Well, nothing, actually. There are apparently two scientific theories of how consciousness might arise in the brain, both so absurd as to be not worth even mentioning to you now; although one of them does predict that “… a sophisticated simulation of a human brain running on a digital computer cannot be conscious—even if it can speak in a manner indistinguishable from a human being. Just as simulating the massive gravitational attraction of a black hole does not actually deform spacetime around the computer implementing the astrophysical code, programming for consciousness will never create a conscious computer.” Reading that does give us some small hope that perhaps the light of reason might be dawning; but then the next sentence plunges us back into darkness by adding, “Consciousness cannot be computed: it must be built into the structure of the system.”
Dear friends, none of this is science. It is blather meant to justify whatever salaries these people are being paid, so they can keep the grants coming for a little while longer. They so badly want their work to lead somewhere! But their century-old “fundamental scientific dogma” of materialism has them so hog-tied, even now, that if they are to pursue scientific careers they dare not even attempt to think freely.
The human brain does not generate consciousness. The brain isn’t even the “two-way radio in the head of a meat-robot” that I used to call it when I spoke publicly (that was always a good laugh-line). By now, researchers who consider pursuing the truth to be far more important than preserving that old materialist dogma are coming to realize that consciousness attaches to the entire body, and not just to the brain. Consciousness also is the body! In fact, consciousness is all that exists.
Dr. Max Planck is a very big deal among physicists. He won the 1918 Nobel Prize in physics as the father of quantum mechanics, but his much more important discovery has been entirely ignored for most of a century. As you know, he said in 1931, “I regard consciousness as fundamental. I regard matter as derivative from consciousness. We cannot get behind consciousness. Everything that we talk about, everything that we regard as existing, postulates consciousness.” All the evidence suggests that he was perfectly right! What we experience as human consciousness is the base creative energy that continuously manifests this universe. Such a profound core insight, so simple, and now so ever more certainly true! But even nearly ninety years later, scientists continue to blunder in every direction but the right one.
Here is some of their recent materialist folly:
* They are trying to read memories from dead brains, thinking their doing that might somehow help them figure out where our memories are stored. In fact, the brain does hold short-term memories, like that number you are about to dial or what your spouse has just asked you to buy; but memories that are meant to be held for a longer term are established by a different process and are maintained in your larger consciousness. Even knowing that someone with a damaged hippocampus can no longer create short-term memories but is able to retrieve past longer-term memories seems to spur no scientific insights.
* They are trying to figure out how brain-chemicals make us human, and are “the origins of our rich cognitive abilities.” In fact, while we are in bodies we have access to as little as five percent of our vast, eternal minds, so we have much richer cognitive abilities without the brain and its chemicals than we have with them!
* They imagine that consciousness is awareness, and that babies might develop it at five months of age; but they also speculate that consciousness probably has to be more than just awareness. After all, so many of the things our bodies do happen pretty much automatically! This article is notable for what feels as you read it to be heartbreakingly close to an actual breakthrough: “Consciousness may never arise—be it in babies, toddlers, children or adults—because it may always be there to begin with. For all we know, what arises is merely a metacognitive configuration of preexisting consciousness. If so, consciousness may be fundamental in nature—an inherent aspect of every mental process, not a property constituted or somehow generated by particular physical arrangements of the brain.” So near, and yet so far!
* The notion that preserving our brains will keep our minds alive past our physical death blunders on. Until recently, these transhumanist articles have been full of hope about how easily possible it soon will be – any minute now! – to make people immortal by preserving their brains in jars or uploading their minds into computers. These efforts seem less optimistic lately, but there are some very wealthy people funding the necessary studies. And scientists need to make a living! So even though now we begin to find articles about how horrifying it would be to spend eternity as an aware brain in a bottle on a shelf, these scientists continue to go through the motions.
Actually, Da Vinci Code novelist Dan Brown is closer to the truth than any scientist! He speculates that in the future “some form of global consciousness that we perceive and that becomes our divine” is going to become a satisfactory substitute for all our outmoded notions of God. He says, “Our need for that exterior god, that sits up there and judges us … will diminish and eventually disappear.” And he is almost right! What he and all the scientists still miss is the glorious fact that the “global consciousness” he imagines does indeed already exist, it always has existed, and it always will exist.
Eureka! It turns out the genuine God is still patiently waiting in the last place we’ll look….