A brief but honest response. I’ll admit I included the last question in a (possibly fruitless) attempt to drudge up an admission from a self-proclaimed atheist as to even the slightest possibility of a vague definition of the misnomer ‘afterlife.’ And now that I’ve stated it as such, I doubt I’ll receive anything less than a blunt and unwavering ‘no,’ but I’ll hold on to hope.
In response to the first question though, Mugatu (as I like to think of him) has only tackled the ‘easy problem’ of consciousness as described by David Chalmers (see this post). Namely, he has outlined why he believes that the outward appearance of consciousness is merely a brain state, which is all but unarguable. He, possibly for brevity’s sake, did not address what Chalmers calls the ‘hard problem,’ that is, the qualia of one’s subjective experience, which he states, and I agree for the most part, has no physical or chemical counterpoint in the brain, or in physical reality at all. Chalmers argues that these phenomena cannot and will not be found in physical reality, as their definition restricts them to metaphysics, but I’m sure my friends at EoA will have some arguments against this. So, as I have nothing else to add to Makagutu’s response, let’s see if anyone will tackle Chalmer’s ‘hard problem.’
Do you believe consciousness exists in this reality? Is it merely a by-product of brain function? Is it contained somewhere in the brain?
Do you believe in the possibility that consciousness can continue to exist after death
These questions appear here. I have decided to combine the two because they deal with the same subject matter, that is, consciousness. We all must be aware that this happens to be one of the questions that our species has been attempting to answer for centuries if not millenia and as such a blog post by yours truly would not be sufficient in dealing with this problem. Having said that, we will then attempt to give the question an attempt.
I am not a neuro-scientist and so in order to answer this question, I would first like us to look at the definition of consciousness, definitions that…
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