The Dangerous Mysteries of Consciousness

by Ron Rosenbaum from Slate

"There's a certain kind of mystery—unsolved and probably insoluble—that has a seductive attraction for me. I think the insolubility is the attraction. Historical and literary mysteries: What was the origin of Hitler's hatred? Did Shakespeare revise Hamlet? And I'm particularly troubled by metaphysical mysteries, the essential but oh-so-slippery mysteries of existence. Why is there something rather than nothing? What is the origin and nature of consciousness? What distinguishes living from nonliving being?..."

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