Soul Dust: The Magic of Consciousness by Nicholas Humphrey | 9780691138626 | Hardcover | Barnes & Noble
Soul Dust: The Magic of Consciousness

Soul Dust: The Magic of Consciousness

by Nicholas Humphrey
     
 

ISBN-10: 0691138621

ISBN-13: 9780691138626

Pub. Date: 02/21/2011

Publisher: Princeton University Press

How is consciousness possible? What biological purpose does it serve? And why do we value it so highly? In Soul Dust, the psychologist Nicholas Humphrey, a leading figure in consciousness research, proposes a startling new theory. Consciousness, he argues, is nothing less than a magical-mystery show that we stage for ourselves inside our own heads. This self

Overview

How is consciousness possible? What biological purpose does it serve? And why do we value it so highly? In Soul Dust, the psychologist Nicholas Humphrey, a leading figure in consciousness research, proposes a startling new theory. Consciousness, he argues, is nothing less than a magical-mystery show that we stage for ourselves inside our own heads. This self-made show lights up the world for us and makes us feel special and transcendent. Thus consciousness paves the way for spirituality, and allows us, as human beings, to reap the rewards, and anxieties, of living in what Humphrey calls the "soul niche."

Tightly argued, intellectually gripping, and a joy to read, Soul Dust provides answers to the deepest questions. It shows how the problem of consciousness merges with questions that obsess us all—how life should be lived and the fear of death. Resting firmly on neuroscience and evolutionary theory, and drawing a wealth of insights from philosophy and literature, Soul Dust is an uncompromising yet life-affirming work—one that never loses sight of the majesty and wonder of consciousness.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780691138626
Publisher:
Princeton University Press
Publication date:
02/21/2011
Pages:
256
Sales rank:
1,250,059
Product dimensions:
5.80(w) x 8.50(h) x 1.00(d)

Table of Contents

Invitation ix
Prelude
Chapter 1: Coming-to Explained 3

Part One
Chapter 2: Being "Like Something" 27
Chapter 3: Sentition 42
Chapter 4: Looping the Loop 53

Part Two
Chapter 5: So What? 69
Chapter 6: Being There 80
Chapter 7: The Enchanted World 104
Chapter 8: So That Is Who I Am! 125
Chapter 9: Being Number One 140

Part Three
Chapter 10: Entering the Soul Niche 155
Chapter 11: Dangerous Territory 165
Chapter 12: Cheating Death 177

Envoi 203
Acknowledgments 215
Notes 217
Index 239

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