1 min readWhen physical damage in the brain leads to enriched consciousness

If the brain controls consciousness, why then do some people who experience brain damage report expanded consciousness?

In this 2017 article for Scientific American, Bernardo Kastrup rounds up studies which show that when there is damage in the brain, some individuals experience expansion of consciousness. Kastrup asserts that if consciousness was purely physical then it would be impossible for people to experience self-transcendence when the brain is damaged.

Implications for AI

If consciousness is not physical, what is it then? What is the role of the human brain in light of the realities mentioned by Kastrup in this article? Would humans function better without a brain?  Why then do AI developers think that by emulating the human brain, they wil be able to create machine consciousness?

It is important to note that while the brain seems to be an impediment to expansive consciousness, we maintain that it is an important aspect of our humanity. For without the human brain, we would not be able to work “in the world” to create better societies.

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