Continuum Center carries on its tradition, since 1979, of pioneering syntheses and applications of leading-edge interdisciplinary research for new models of consciousness, human capacity and the interconnectedness of life.
The debates have been hot:
Is consciousness nothing more than what the brain does? Only the by-product of chemicals secreting and neurons firing? That’s the Newtonian, materialist, mechanistic model. Only material things are real, non-material subjective states – emotions, thoughts, consciousness – are not real.
Or is consciousness something that exists beyond the brain, and the brain is like a mental radio that tunes in and amplifies consciousness? That’s the quantum model. There are other dimensions of the universe and “reality”, and our brain has currently unused, undeveloped capacities to navigate those other dimensions.
A lot rides on our understanding of consciousness. One is about constraints and probabilities (and feeling a victim of circumstances/cog in wheel); the other is about transcendent capacities and possibilities (and personal responsibility). The latter can accommodate – yet expands upon – the former; the former is an either/or outlook and must renounce the latter.
Nobel neuroscientist, Roger Sperry: “Current concepts of the mind-brain relationship involve a direct break with the long established materialist and behaviorist doctrine that has dominated neuroscience for many decades. Instead of renouncing or ignoring consciousness, the new interpretation gives full recognition to the primacy of inner conscious awareness as a causal reality.
“Causal”. Not to be confused with casual.
The materialist/mechanistic paradigm doesn’t know what to do with evidence that consciousness is causal, because it undermines a pillar of mechanistic/materialist assumptions: that consciousness is not real, it’s only a by-product of physical conditions, like genetics, or of a brain conventionally understood to be quite hallucination-prone, and deceitful by many in the materialist paradigm.
It’s fascinating how a slight turn of words can change emotional direction towards a certain conclusion.
Is the brain deceitful? Or, just unaware of the limits of physical perception?
Hallucinatory? Or, Open to visions and other dimensional interactions we currently don’t conventionally investigate because we assume they are not real?
And how do we frame this important question:
Do we use all of the brain? Or, Do we use all of the brain to its fuller capacity? (Does “activated” mean only on/off or are there degrees and qualities of engagement?)
Continuum Center investigates. We report the research that describes a far more optimist and inspiring view of humanity, human capacity and the brain. We invite you to explore, and join us in a new conversation for a new universe of possibility. BLOG
Fortunately there’s more to the story. More*. (Here will be a link to the *More below)
The quantum brain and how quantum physics fits with the new interpretation of brain science.
The Frontal lobe – The materialist paradigm also says the machine-like universe of material definitions and values has no transcendent purpose or meaning, therefore our frontal lobe – for decision-making and meaning – is seen merely as the seat of “executive functions:” managing priorities and logistics like a good executive in a command/control universe.
Materialist model and mental Illness. How the physicalization of mind leads to skyrocketing rates of diagnoses requiring pharmaceutical medication.
*More: Extensive experimental studies have shown that mental acts of attention and intention activate certain regions of the cerebral cortex. An intention to move, for example, initiates the firing of a set of neurons of the supplementary motor area about 200 milliseconds before the intended movement takes place.
Consciousness is causal. That means our conventional assumptions need to fundamentally change. It is to be expected that such a profound shift will lie outside the current lines of thought which gave rise to circumstances we see today.
“Major problems cannot be solved with the same consciousness that created them.” Einstein
The standard, “common sense,” view of reality, by definition, will not be able to accommodate or make sense of the descriptions emerging from quantum physics. We need some breakthrough thinking. Breakthrough to further dimensions than time and material. Breakthrough to understand that our current models are missing a primary consciousness, intelligence, or information principle.
The Trouble with Brain Science By GARY MARCUS JULY 11, 2014:
“Neuroscience awaits a similar breakthrough. We know that there must be some lawful relation between assemblies of neurons and the elements of thought, but we are currently at a loss to describe those laws.”
Yep. And conventional materialist science will remain at a loss while chained to its foundational assumptions – which have no solid scientific evidence. The explanation lies outside of the box, outside the mechanistic, rational logic that Einstein knew to be in 2nd position to intuitive realms beyond it.
“The intuitive mind is a sacred gift & the rational mind is faithful servant. We have created a society that honors the servant and has forgotten the gift.” Albert Einstein
If the findings don’t defy “common” sense, then they are of the same old consciousness framework that paved the way to epidemic rates of anxiety, depression, alienation, suicide, addiction, cancer, heart disease, homelessness, incarceration, environmental degradation, 7,000 kids a day dropping out of school in the US and 1/3 of population obese.
We can do better. But we need a quantum leap. We need a paradigm that understands consciousness as primary to physical, material, reality. Though, given the mind-body continuum, stimulation of a brain region can also cause or contribute to mental/emotional states, it certainly is not evidence that physical stimulation is always the cause of subjective states.
Many believe it is sufficient evidence. They also consider, as sufficient evidence, the fact a deceased person’s brain is no longer exhibiting consciousness to make the case the brain causes consciousness. By that same logic, materialists are forced to believe that a radio is the source of the music because when it’s broken no music anymore.
We’ve got interdisciplinary scientific evidence, coherent philosophy spanning cultures and 1000s of years, and sound logic. We hope it’s a blend you enjoy.
“When I lost that perception of “solid” and that defined boundary of my body, I became at one with all that is.” Harvard Neuroanatomist, Jll Bolte Taylor (after suffering a stroke that shut down her left hemisphere for 8 years)
“I maintain that the human mystery is incredibly demeaned by scientific reductionism, with its claim in promissory materialism to account eventually for all the spiritual world in terms of patterns of neuronal activity.” Nobel Prize neuroscientist Sir John Eccles
“There are strong indications that we seriously under-develop our neocortex and hardly touch its potential, though we use all of it by default, simply because the brain functions as an integrated unit.” – Joseph Chilton Pearce – humanities profess