Guide #2: On Awareness, Consciousness, Near-Death

Not a simple thing, to boil down theories of consciousness into a 10-page e-guide… but… in this conversation we explore interesting ideas about whether the universe is fundamentally made of awareness, even more so than matter and energy.

Excerpt: There are many definitions of “consciousness.” In D’Amasio’s case, he is looking specifically at how we form a sense of identity through the physical structure of our brains… Some talk about an extended level of consciousness — being attuned to interconnection with the entangled web of the universe (see Guide #1), far beyond the limitations of what our brains enable us to see, hear, touch, taste and smell… Others wonder if it is possible to maintain consciousness after the heart stops. Some who experience what we call “near death” believe yes…. Others believe our dependence on language is what has limited our ability to sense the way animals and shamans do.

One neuroscientist featured in this guide wrote the book “The Spiritual Doorway in the Brain” to explain physiological reasons near-death experience (NDE) might be reported. On the other hand, one recent study is cited from a medical journal that reports interesting findings on NDE and urges further research.

IMG_3367Science experts who spoke at the recent 2014 Science and Non-Duality (SAND) conference raise questions about whether our sense of separated self is based on anything real. As a pathologist who examines cancerous cells on a regular basis suggested, we tend to be rigidly stuck in seeing the biology of a ‘self,’ often forgetting that we are not one thing but – as in a flock of birds – a constellation of multiple organisms moving together as one.

Finally, we learn from comments by author Peter Russell, who suggests that leaving Awareness out of the equation is likely why science is not much closer to understanding the mysteries of the universe than Einstein and his peers were 100 years ago when new questions came up.

Excerpt: “Maybe when we get past the physiology of the hardware that is our brains — whether the bliss experienced by Fyodor Dostoevsky or the transcendent moment of Edgar Mitchell, or the enhanced oxygen nirvana from a good hike, or a psychedelic revelation, or the awareness of a near-death or out-of-body experience, or the realm produced by meditation — then perhaps we begin to connect with something beyond our brain’s capacity to process.”

I welcome those with varying perspectives to join Guidepost conversation after reading the 10-page Guide #2 below. While all comments on this website are moderated and/or edited for clarity and respect, this space is created for people of all views to have a meaningful conversation together.

Welcome to the discussion! Download the free 10-page Guide #2 PDF below. Then join the Guidepost conversation here. What are your thoughts on the consciousness of the universe?

Guide #2: On Awareness

— Mikki Morrissette, founder, Connected in the Deep

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