Eureka! (Dunes)

A calling to study consciousness

Georgeann Sack
Apr 18, 2019 · 2 min read
Eureka Dunes, California. Photo by Georgeann Sack.

Digging down this dirt worm hole

I don’t need a mountaintop to find my soul

I wrote the above lyrics in 2008. Turns out they are crap. I need mountains.

While scrambling up this particular sand mountain I had a moment of clarity. I am interested in a lot of things, but by far what I am most interested in is consciousness. From now on, all of my non-fiction writing will be focused on understanding consciousness. What is it, and how can we best study it? How can we measure it?

A lot of people are interested in these questions, but most of them are trying to understand it by staring directly at the problem. They also tend to be human-centric, a narrow view of the consciousness question in my opinion.

My approach is to look at other, better understood systems, and ask, what can these systems teach us about how the brain works? Are there any useful theoretical frameworks describing other systems that we can apply to the consciousness question? This is armchair philosophy, not science, but it just might give scientists new directions for further inquiry.

In addition, I want to make time, space, and resources available to scientists, philosophers, and artists who are actively studying consciousness. To this end, I am starting a three month fellowship for consciousness studies in Bishop, California. More on this within the year.

Take Eureka Dunes. Can we learn anything about consciousness from our understanding of the geological processes that created these dunes? Watch for my next post, which will focus on that question.

Thanks for reading

Want to follow my efforts as I write about consciousness and work to build a community of consciousness researchers? No fluff, just once a month mailings about my latest writing and progress.

Georgeann Sack

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Exploring human experience through neuroscience and character-driven science fiction.

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