Category Archives: 14. you tickle, therefore I am

a. summary

Ashok Gangadean’s interview with Dr. Ursula Goodenough, proseffor Biology, Dr. Karl H.Pibram, specialized in brain studies, and Dr. Daniel A. Monti, M.D. – Consciousness, Connectivity, and Integral Models of Reality


‘To live is to be other.’ The philosophical implications of the commons sketched in its larger context of the outer and inner space of the unknown.

TO ANDREAS WEBER, a theoretical biologist in Germany, the commons is not simply a matter of public policy or economics. It is an existential condition of life in all its forms, from cellular matter to human beings. “The idea of the commons provides a unifying principle that dissolves the supposed opposition between nature and society/culture,” he writes. “It cancels the separation of the ecological and the social.” According to Weber, the commons provides us with the means to reimagine the universe and our role in it. (David Bollier: Think like a Commoner, 2014: 147)

We also see, implicitly, a Newtonian universe in which large abstract forces buffet the inanimate particles of nature. In this view, human consciousness and meaning are insignificant if not moot in the cosmic scheme of things.

Our tacit metaphysical commitments, argues Weber, are the very basis for our “free market” economic and political structures. What’s so intriguing is that many scientists are starting to see the natural world and evolution through a different metaphysical prism, one that sees life as a system of cooperative agents constantly striving to build meaningful relationships and exchange “gifts.” Competition still exists, of course, but it is interwoven with deep, stabilising forms of cooperation.

In this new theoretical scheme, the subjective experiences of an organism matter. That’s because, in the emerging scheme of biological thought, all organisms are “meaning-making” living systems. Life is seen as an evolutionary process in which embodied subjects interact with their environment and other living organisms to create meaningful relationships. Subjectivity is not an illusion or an inconsequential side-story, as our existing metaphysics claims; it is not a mere bubble of ephemeral, trivial feelings in an empty universe. Rather, subjectivity is the centrepiece of a new “existential ecology” whose primary concern is subjects, not objects alone. Human beings are not isolated atoms adrift in a vast indifferent universe. Our human subjectivity is not separate from a nature that exists as an alien, unfathomable “other.” The subjective and the objective, the individual and the collective, blur into each other — just as in a commons!


i. further reading & research



—Isaac Asimov Memorial Debate: Is the Universe a Simulation (2016)

—François Truffaut: Fahrenheit 451 (1966)

—Andrei Tarkovsky, Solaris (1976) 

The Best Dr. David Bohm Interview

—Mark Fisher, The Weird and The Eerie (2016)

—Stanislav Lem, Solaris (1961)

—Edwin Abbott, Flatland: A Romance of Many Dimensions (1884)

—Aldous Huxley, The Doors of Perception: Heaven and Hell (1954)

—Michael Pollan, How to Change Your Mind: What the New Science of Psychedelics Teaches Us About Consciousness, Dying, Addiction, Depression, and Transcendence (2018)

—William S. Burroughs & Allen Ginsburg, The Yage Letters (1963)

 —Terence McKenna: The Archaic Revival: Speculations on Psychedelic Mushrooms, the Amazon, Virtual Reality, UFOs, Evolution, Shamanism, the Rebirth of the Goddess, and the End of History (1992)

—Oliver Sacks, The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat And Other Clinical Tales (1985)

—Jittu Krishnamurti & David Bohm, The Ending of Time (1985)

See also the series:

—Jeff Noon, VURT (1993)

c. Contact


 Robert Zemeckis, USA
1997, 3 min 37 sec (fragment)

A clip from the movie Contact (1997), where Jodie Foster describes her experience and the faith that others must have to believe her despite her lack of hard evidence.

‘Contact’ is a 1997 American science fiction drama film, an adaption of Carl Sagan’s 1985 novel of the same name.

Jodie Foster portrays the film’s protagonist, Dr. Eleanor Arroway, a SETIscientist who finds strong evidence of extraterrestrial life and is chosen to make first contact.

d. David Bohm on Wholeness and Fragmentation


Amsterdam, The Netherlands
1990, 13 min 13 sec (fragment)

Excerpt from the documentary “Art Meets Science and Spirituality in a Changing Economy – From Fragmentation to Wholeness” .Artists, scientists, spiritual leaders and economists gathered in Amsterdam in 1990 to explore the emerging paradigm of a holistic world view and the implications for a global economy

David Bohm (1917-1992) was an American theoretical physicist who contributed innovative and unorthodox ideas to quantum theory, philosophy of mind, and neuropsychology. He is widely considered to be one of the most significant theoretical physicists of the 20th century.

In physics, Bohm advanced the view that the old Cartesian model of reality was limited, in the light of developments in quantum physics. He developed in detail a mathematical and physical theory of implicate and explicate order to complement it.

Bohm warned of the dangers of rampant reason and technology, advocating instead the need for genuine supportive dialogue which he claimed could broaden and unify conflicting and troublesome divisions in the social world. In this his epistemology mirrored his ontological viewpoint.

He believed that the working of the brain, at the cellular level, obeyed the mathematics of some quantum effects. Therefore he postulated that thought was distributed and non-localised in the way that quantum entities do not readily fit into our conventional model of space and time.

e. Roger Penrose The quantum nature of consciousness


Moscow, Russia
2013, 7 min 8 sec

Knighted in 1994 for his contributions to science, Sir Roger Penrose OM FRS, is an English mathematical physicist, mathematician and philosopher.

Penrose is internationally renowned for his scientific work in mathematical physics, in particular for his contributions to general relativity and cosmology. His primary interest is in a field of geometry called tesselation, the covering of surfaces with tiles of different shapes. In this segement he concentrates on the concept of consciousness.

c. Stuart Hameroff on Consciousness


Arizona, USA
1975, 2 min

Dr. Stuart Hameroff is a Professor of Anesthesiology and Psychology, and Director of the Center for Consciousness Studies at the University of Arizona. Together with British quantum physicist Sir Roger Penrose, Hameroff is the co-author of the controversial Orch OR model of consciousness.

During this 1 hour conversation with Hameroff a variety of interesting topics are covered, centered around the concept of consciousness.

h. Stuart Hameroff Do we have a quantum Soul?


TEDxBrussels, Belgium
2010, 2 min

Dr. Hameroff’s research for 35 years has involved consciousness.

Recently Hameroff has explored the theoretical implications of Orch OR for consciousness to exist independent of the body, distributed in deeper, lower, faster scales in non-local, holographic spacetime, raising possible scientific approaches to the soul and spirituality.