Modern brain research is conducted under the rather arbitrary assumption that the original emergence of consciousness was likely to have been a lucky accident, a random byproduct of neuronal activity within the brain over millennia of interacting with a challenging external environment.
Based upon this initial assumption, vast sums of research money have been committed in a global effort to map the complex wiring system of billions of neurons throughout the brain. But in recent years this “tracing the door-bell wiring approach” is being challenged as new information urges us to begin to search in a radically new direction to discover how consciousness actually operates within the human body.
A growing number of researchers now believe that we have been looking for consciousness in the wrong place, that we have been so one-pointedly focused upon electrical impulses running along nerve fibres that we have neglected to consider the possibility that consciousness might be found to be the activity of 3-dimensional electromagnetic flux within the brain cavity, rather than in the activity of nerve impulses flowing through neuronal pathways.
New evidence supports the idea that consciousness may be operating through an optical network system using biophotons, light “packets” emitted by living cells, a phenomenon that was first discovered in 1923. More recently, Sergey Mayburov at the Lebedev Institute of Physics in Moscow, measured streams of biophotonic emission within living fish eggs. These streams consisted of short quasiperiodic bursts, which were seen to be remarkably similar to those used to send binary data over a noisy channel.
Within our bodies, such a network of biophotonic information packets could very well operate in a manner similar to our current global information network, which is primarily interconnected through beams of light coursing through fibreglass cables. Of course, such a possibility would not be news to those highly skilled mystics, saints, and ayahuasceros who have described experiencing a “Mind of Light.” Further support for this idea can be found in numerous recent scientific papers such as the neuroscientist Tuszyński’s “Are There Optical Communication Channels in the Brain?”
It has been speculated that myelinated axons could serve as the waveguides for travelling biophotons within the brain. The widest myelinated axons in the brain have an inside diameter of 10μm, while the narrowest are 0.2μm in diameter. Of course, narrower waveguides channel higher frequencies (and correspondingly can handle higher rates of encoded information transfer).
Figure 2: Kirlian photograph of an oak leaf. Mark D Roberts Photography/Wikimedia Commons/CCBY4.0
One final piece of the puzzle in support of electromagnetic field consciousness is the phenomenon of Kirlian photography, first discovered in 1939 by the Russian electrical engineer Semyon Kirlian. It was found that by placing an object on a photographic plate connected to a high-voltage source, a photographic image of previously unsuspected radiation patterns emitted by the object could be produced. This phenomenon has been subsequently called by various names: electrography, electrophotography, corona discharge photography (CDP), bioelectrography, electrophotonic imaging (EPI), and in Russia, Kirlianography. The corona discharge glow at the surface of an object (Figure 2) subjected to a high-voltage electrical field is referred to as a “Kirlian aura” in Russia and Eastern Europe.
In short, there are numerous avenues of exploration open to future researchers in the search for the physics of consciousness. Many of these areas have been largely ignored by neurophysiologists in their race to map the complex neuronal wiring systems of the brain. It is this author’s hope that broader avenues of exploration will eventually result in a true understanding of the physics and dynamics of this amazing phenomenon that is consciousness.
Shelli Joye’s book Developing Supersensible Perception: Knowledge of the Higher Worlds through Entheogens, Prayer, and Nondual Awareness, is available from all good bookstores.The footnotes for this article are published in the print and PDF versions of this magazine.