The inspiring and courageous thesis of Roger Penrose, one of the winners of the 2020 Nobel price:
“Whatever consciousness is, it is not computational---it is not a physical process that can be described by computation”.
But what is computation?
Computation is applied to discrete things. It assumes that physical reality is an arithmetic aggregate of discrete and isolated things existing successively, deprived of unity and continuous communication. This arithmetic aggregate is governed by Aristotelian analytic principles, such as the analytic principle of the excluded third according to which everything is either a or not-a. According to Aristotle analytic principles are biological principles that govern the behavior of our particular senses---of our finite neuronal brain, which is binary (digital) perceiving everything as either being or not-being, either a or not-a, and nothing as being both a and not- a in conformity with the analytic principle of contradiction.
Now consciousness transcends the analytic constraining framework of our biological brain. Consciousness is the quantum ground of our biological brain and in this sense behaves differently. Insofar Consciousness comprehends the world, it behaves synthetically, indeterminately and has infinite power---the power of our infinite mind or nous.
The human being is therefore a complex whole located both in the biological reality of our finite analytic neuronal brain and in the quantum reality of our infinite mind. How do these two parallel and separated realities communicate? This is the ultimate challenging question of the philosophy of consciousness and neuroscience.
See the portrait of Roger Penrose "Shadows and Lights of Consciousness"
Roger Penrose is physicist, mathematician, and philosopher at University of Oxford. He has made fundamental contributions in many disciplines from the mathem...