According to neuroscience experts, our neurons work to create what we call conscious experience or consciousness. The brain itself makes a difference between intelligence and consciousness since the second has to do directly with the nature in which we live.
Anil Seth is a neuroscientist who studies the brain foundations of consciousness and the self. He affirms that we are beings who, constantly, are hallucinating in a more or less controlled way. When we accept these hallucinations we call them “reality.”
What Really is Consciousness?
Through the study of Anil Seth, we understand that there are two ways to understand it. In the first place, the experiences we live from the world around us made up of sounds, aromas or sensations that create a 3D multisensory panorama. That is as if it were an interior movie.
And secondly, there is the “conscious self”, the feeling of not being part of that inner film that shapes the world around us.
The brain as a single organism neither sees nor hears, but creates conjectures thanks to all the signals it receives from the outside world. Although the most curious thing is that perceptions are not created from the outside in but on the contrary. Our previous experiences determine how we perceive these signals.
We Constantly Hallucinate
The neuroscientists determine which humans construct our reality from hallucinations we control, provided that there is no mental illness prior. Even the “I” is built through these hallucinations.
Our experiences of the world and of ourselves as part of it are different types of controlled hallucinations. And that, as human beings, we have been moulding them over the centuries to keep us alive in the face of dangers.
In this way, when a person suffers from a mental illness, such as depression or schizophrenia, they perceive the world in the wrong way and, therefore, they perceive themselves inaccurately. This is because the prediction mechanisms are not working properly.
However, having been able to understand that there are people to whom this happens opens doors to research, both in psychiatry and neurology. Because it is not about symptoms of perception, but about the brain’s own mechanism, which has that function in our body.