I have a friend who is a mortician. I’ve known him for twenty eight years, but I still have no idea what he believes in regards to death. We actually went to a friend’s funeral together a couple of years ago, and the subject still did not come up.
Yesterday, he posted this:
Stuart Hameroff MD is an Anesthesiologist, Quantum Consciousness Theorist and Researcher Professor Emeritus, Departments of Anesthesiology and Psychology Banner-University Medical Center Director, The Center for Consciousness Studies, Colleges of Medicine, Science, and Social and Behavioral Sciences, at The University of Arizona, Tucson, Arizona
His research concerns consciousness studies, the Penrose-Hameroff “Orch OR” theory, quantum mechanical/general relativity approaches to consciousness, the role of microtubules in brain function including consciousness, molecular mechanisms of anesthetic gas molecules, brain modulation with transcranial ultrasound.
According to Hammeroff (I looked him up), "We know what it is like to be conscious – to have awareness, a conscious ‘mind’, but who, or what, are ‘we’ who know such things? How is the subjective nature of phenomenal experience – our ‘inner life’ - to be explained in scientific terms? What consciousness actually is, and how it comes about remain unknown.
The general assumption in modern science and philosophy - the ‘standard model’ - is that consciousness emerges from complex computation among brain neurons, computation whose currency is seen as neuronal firings (‘spikes’) and synaptic transmissions, equated with binary ‘bits’ in digital computing. But this approach fails to account for the nature of phenomenal experience, and relegates consciousness to epiphenomenal illusion, occurring too late for real-time conscious control of our seemingly conscious actions.
What is the origin of consciousness? The standard ‘brain-as-computer’ approach also presumes consciousness ‘emerged’ from complex neuronal computation during biological evolution, extrinsic to the makeup of the universe. On the other hand, spiritual and contemplative traditions, and scientists and philosophers embracing panpsychism, and the ‘Orch OR’ theory (see below) consider consciousness to be intrinsic, ‘woven into the fabric of the universe’, existing all along in the fine scale structure of reality. In these views, conscious precursors and Platonic forms preceded biology, prompting its origin and driving its evolution.
My research involves a theory of consciousness which can bridge these two approaches, a theory developed over the past 20 years with eminent British physicist Sir Roger Penrose, recipient of a 2020 Nobel prize in physics for his pioneering work on black holes. The Penrose-Hameroff theory of ‘orchestrated objective reduction’ (‘Orch OR’) suggests consciousness arises from quantum vibrations in protein polymers called microtubules inside brain neurons, vibrations which interfere, ‘collapse’ and resonate across scale, control neuronal firings, generate consciousness, and connect ultimately to ‘deeper order’ quantum processes in fundamental spacetime geometry."