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Philosophy | Interdisciplinary Perspectives on Consciousness and the Self

Interdisciplinary Perspectives on Consciousness and the Self

Menon, Sangeetha, Sinha, Anindya, Sreekantan, B. V. (Eds.)

2014, XVII, 328 p. 14 illus., 8 illus. in color.

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  • Is an original contribution to the emerging discipline of consciousness studies
  • Presents cutting-edge and original work from well-known authors and scholars in philosophy, behavioural and neurological sciences, and physics
  • Focuses on the self and awareness in humans and nonhuman primates

This book brings together ancient spiritual wisdom and modern science and philosophy to address age-old questions regarding our existence, free will and the nature of conscious awareness.

Stuart Hameroff MD
Professor, Anesthesiology and Psychology, and Director, Center for Consciousness Studies

The University of Arizona, Tucson, Arizona


This book presents a rich, broad-ranging overview of contemporary research and scholarship into consciousness and the self…. It is … to their credit that the editors have assembled a highly stimulating set of scholars whose expertise cover all the relevant areas. I strongly recommend the book to anyone with an interest in understanding the directions in which contemporary thinking about the nature of consciousness is headed.

B. Les Lancaster

Emeritus Professor of Transpersonal Psychology

Liverpool John Moores University, UK



This volume is a collection of 17 essays that contribute to the emerging discipline of consciousness studies with particular focus on the concept of the self. The essays together argue that to understand consciousness is to understand the self that beholds consciousness. Two broad issues are addressed in the volume: the place of the self in the lives of humans and nonhuman primates; and the interrelations between the self and consciousness, which contribute to the understanding of cognitive functions, awareness, free will, nature of reality, and the complex experiential and behavioural attributes of consciousness. The book presents cutting-edge and original work from well-known authors and scholars of philosophy, psychiatry, behavioural sciences and physics. This is a pioneering attempt to present to the reader multiple ways of conceptualizing and thus understanding the relation between consciousness and self in a nuanced manner.

Content Level » Research

Keywords » Cognition - Concept of Self - Consciousness Studies - Emergence of Awareness - Origin of Self

Related subjects » Cognitive Psychology - Philosophy - Psychiatry

Table of contents 

Chapter 1: Introduction.- Part I: Consciousness, Agency and the Self.- Chapter 2: Conscious Agency and the Preconscious/Unconscious Self.- Chapter 3: Finding the Self and Losing the Ego in the State of Pure Consciousness.- Chapter 4: Converging on the Self: Western Philosophy, Eastern Meditation, Scientific Research.- Chapter 5: The Self as Organiser.- Chapter 6: Reconceptualizing the Separative Self. Chapter 7: Consciousness, Memory and Dreams in Kashyapa Samhita. Chapter 8: Experientially Acquired Knowledge of the Self in a Nonhuman Primate.- Chapter 9: Executive Functions as a Path to Understanding Nonhuman Con-sciousness: Looking under the Light.- Chapter 10: Self, Identity and Culture.- Part II: Self and First-person Phenomenology.- Chapter 11: Consciousness and First Person Phenomenology:  First steps towards an Experiential Phenomenological Writing and Reading (EWR).- Chapter 12: Self and Neurophenomenology: Gift and Responsibility.- Chapter 13: The Inside-Outside Story of Consciousness: A Phenomenological Exploration.- Chapter 14: Self and Empathy.- Chapter 15: Adapted Self in the Context of Disability: An Ecological, Embodied Perspective.- Chapter 16: Self and Transformative Experiences:  Three Indian Philosophers on Consciousness.- Part III: Boundaries of the Self and Origins of Consciousness.- Chapter 17: Soul, Neurons, Particles, or Mind-at-Large? Exploring the Boundaries of the Self.- Chapter 18: Is the Source of Awareness Present in the Quantum Vacuum?.- Chapter 19: Cosmological Considerations Relevant to the Origin of Consciousness.- Chapter 20: Reality and Consciousness:  Is Quantum Biology the Future of Life Sciences?.- Chapter 21: Human Brain is a Coherent State of the Mind.- Chapter 22: Consciousness, Functional Geometry and Internal Representation.- Chapter 23: Consciousness, Libertarian Free Will and Quantum Randomness.

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