If consciousness exists, then what is it and why can’t it be operated on by a brain surgeon or similar?
In Hypnotherapy, the hypnotic state is often defined as an altered state of consciousness; that level of consciousness at various levels lower in frequency than our waking or “Beta state”. But what is it and why can’t it be located and worked by a surgeon? Clearly, consciousness is more of an abstract concept, than it is a physical body or brain part, and as such no exact location for it could be identified by a brain surgeon to begin his operation.
Indeed some of the greatest philosophers and thinkers throughout history have pondered this subject of consciousness, what is it exactly? Where is it located? But to quote from a manual written by The Academy of Hypnotic Science “it remains mysterious, elusive and impossible to agree upon”. Subconsciousness, (that level of consciousness below our normal waking, objective consciousness), is non judgemental and highly suggestible, utilising this factor, hypnotherapists can effect changes to harmful beliefs and habits at the subconscious level. The subconscious also drives the autonomic nervous system (possibly this drive comes from the hypothalamus) which is responsible for all our involuntary body actions i.e.: breathing, heart rate, lymph functions, growth, repair and replacement of dead and dying cells etc.
In Rosicrucian ontology, consciousness is described as an attribute of every cell in our body and, as such, is present in our whole being. We have objective consciousness, which is that that comes to our awareness through our five objective senses (sight, smell, taste, touch and hearing.) Then we have subjective consciousness, which allows for interpretation of the objective data, using reasoning, judgement, our life experiences, social conditioning and education etc. Psychic consciousness, where intuition and the extra sensory perceptions like clairvoyance, clairaudience, vibroturgy etc lie, and then we have cosmic consciousness, for the sake of brevity, briefly described as an awareness of a oneness with everything in existence and a connection to the universal creative universal forces.
Dutch cardiologist Pim Van Lommel has conducted extensive research on the near death experience (surely a state of altered consciousness), and the consistent experience of expanded consciousness. Those having this experience seem to think with crystal clarity and recall their life’s experiences back to early childhood and yet their brains exhibit no activity whatsoever! So, what is consciousness and where is it located? What is observing its own body down on an operating table? Could life and death as we know it merely be different states of an infinite consciousness?
According to Lommel, the brain does not produce consciousness. The brain and body act together, more like a T.V./Radio that tunes into specific electro-magnetic waves and converts them into images and sound. Our waking objective consciousness reduces all received information into a single truth that we experience as reality. During altered states of consciousness, we are not limited to the objective senses, we access other senses of our conscious and subconscious and avail ourselves of much more data; more “reality”.