Phenomenology is the study of phenomena in a special way. TO THE THINGS THEMSELVES! was a rallying cry of phenomenologists who strove to turn off, or “bracket”, preconceived notions about what was to be studied. This is not an easy thing to do. All of us, in our psychological/maturational development have taken on cues that connect us to others and to our culture. Still, we must try.
Materialistic science has declared, without proper study, that consciousness is a creation of the brain. Classically, only those things that our senses can experience are worthy of study. The rise of quantum thinking has opened us to things such as bird migration, photosynthesis, and light being both wave and particle. Even the observation of interacting things can change the final outcome. In quantum thinking the subject-object dichotomy collapses “before our eyes”.
Dr. Bruce Greyson, MD, of the University of Virginia Division of Perceptual Studies argues that the brain, like a phone, radio, or similar electronic device receives data from consciousness. In many cases there may be an absence of brain matter, but the subjects present high IQs and function quite normally. Other cases tell of dying persons with significant brain damage becoming lucid, aware, and capable of dialogue with others just before death. Near-death experiences and reincarnation are also presented as pointing to consciousness as something totally other than brain activity.
So if the brain doesn’t create consciousness, where does it come from? What is it? The lecture linked to in this post I had past over many times, because I was not into herbal supplements. I feared that it was just another “groovy guru” thing where a so-called “master” has seen the white light and is now looking for disciples. I had practiced centering prayer and Zen Buddhism for many years before I came across this video. After hearing what Dr. Greyson had to say (the things in themselves without presuppositions or prejudices), I have to admit that my consciousness has been greatly elevated.