Hard Problem of Consciousness - Part 1
Who am I?
I think, I dream, I contemplate, I feel, I intend, I determine, I desire, I want, I need, I make, I do, I have, I don't have, I wish, I seek, I laugh, I cry, I hurt, I love, I care, I mean.
But do I really think, dream, contemplate, feel....? Or all these happen to me and I am aware of it? Is the subjective 'I' the creator of all the manifestations or these manifestations originate deep within me and 'I' become aware of it once it bubbles up to the waking consciousness?
This distinction between I am doing to things are happening to me arises because of the dreams that over-power my 'self' during the REM phase of my sleep. My dreams are beyond my control and they quite evidently happen to me. It is not my doing. How then, the waking reality is my doing?
The waking consciousness or in other ways of describing, the 'I' that we so casually use as part of our language is an extremely strong over-powering illusion that ensures our survival is guaranteed. The illusion exists and is quite strong because it is so closely attached to our survival. It makes us do, think, desire, seek, love etc to make sure the body survives. This illusion is developed over millenia of evolution ever since our ancestors moved form water to land.
This illusory self makes us get out of bed, follow a pattern of activities from going to the toilet, taking a shower, making and eating breakfast, think about work, think about family, worry about life, enjoy the song we listen on the way to work, planning about how we tackle a problem and what not. The illusory self makes us feel like 'we' are doing all this while however subtly all these actions happen automatically from within. Have you ever noticed how perfectly you shower everyday without really planning in detail about when to soap yourself and when to rinse? Yeah, you learnt it as a child and it continued on but still, the actions are automated that it doesn't require conscious thought. A lot of actions, both known and unknown in our bodies happen automatically.
Some actions that we think we do are also in all honesty automated by our bodies while making us feel like we do it. Why does it make us feel like that? What is the purpose of this 'feeling' of existence that over-powers any rational understanding we have about how our bodies function?
We may have to contemplate more on this topic. Philosophers and scientists alike debate and think deep about this hard problem of consciousness. What does it mean to feel like we exist? Where is this undeniable feeling rooted in? What causes this feeling? Is it emergent or is it inherent to any naturally existing system or being? Do non-living things have consciousness as well? What is consciousness?