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Solutions to the hard problem of consciousness

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Abstract:

Solutions to the ‘hard problem’ of consciousness must accept conscious experience as a fundamental non-reducible phenomenon in nature, as Chalmers suggests. Chalmers proposes candidates for an acceptable theory, but I find basic flaws in these. Our own experimental investigations of brain processes causally involved in the development of conscious experience appear to meet Chalmers’ requirement. Even more directly, I had previously proposed a hypothetical ‘conscious mental field’ as an emergent property of appropriate neural activities, with the attributes of integrated subjective experience and a causal ability to modulate some neural processes. This theory meets all the requirements imposed by the ‘hard problem’ and, significantly, it is experimentally testable.

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Department of Physiology, University of California,San Francisco, CA 94143-0444, USA.

Publication date: January 1, 1996

imp/jcs/1996/00000003/00000001/678
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