Does Consciousness Pervade the Universe?

Philosopher Philip Goff answers questions about “panpsychism”

One of science’s most challenging problems is a question that can be stated easily: Where does consciousness come from? In his new book Galileo’s Error: Foundations for a New Science of Consciousness,philosopher Philip Goff considers a radical perspective: What if consciousness is not something special that the brain does but is instead a quality inherent to all matter? It is a theory known as “panpsychism,” and Goff guides readers through the history of the idea, answers common objections (such as “That’s just crazy!”) and explains why he believes panpsychism represents the best path forward. He answered questions from Mind Matters editor Gareth Cook.

[An edited transcript of the interview follows.]

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Scientists Now Believe the Universe Itself May Be Conscious

A new scientific concept has recently come to light, which scientists are calling “panpsychism.” Panpsychism says that the universe could be capable of consciousness, which could change everything.

For quite some time, scientists have been working to understand the universe, where it came from, and why we are here. However, they have often come up short until now. The scientist responsible for such a notion is Gregory Matloff, and his ideas are shocking, to say the least.

According to Matloff, a physicist at New York City College of Technology, in his recently published paper, humans could be like the rest of the universe, in substance and in spirit. Futurism reported that a “proto-consciousness field” could extend throughout all space. Basically, in lamens terms, the entire cosmos could be self-aware.

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