Throughout all of last year, Charlie Rose aired his critically-acclaimed Brain Series (you can watch them all by CLICKING HERE), where he and his producers gathered the greatest minds and researchers in the field of neuroscience for a string of roundtable discussions which provided the viewer with a one-of-a-kind understanding of exactly where we stand with regards to our knowledge of the elusive and mysterious inner workings of the human brain. Rose recently launched his Brain Series Two, and last night he aired the second episode entitled “Consciousness“. Rose opened the show with the following terrific preface: “Tonight we continue our exploration of the wonders of the human brain. For this program we examine the brain’s most complex function — consciousness. Here is what Sigmund Freud said: ‘The conscious mind may be compared to a fountain playing in the sun, and falling back into the great subterranean pool of subconscious from which it rises.’ Consciousness remains one of the great mysteries of human existence. When scientists today are asked what poses the greatest challenge in modern science, they answer, ‘consciousness.’ Is the mind separate from the body? How can interior subjective lives be explained? What is awareness itself? These questions inspire our search to understand the very essence of what it means to be human. From the time of Aristotle and Plato, these ideas were often contemplated by philosophers. Many religions think of consciousness as living in a soul that survives the physical body after death. But with the rise of cognitive neuroscience over the last century, we know now and better understand the biological underpinnings of consciousness. We know that everything the body does, from our sense of sight and smell, to our sense of self, is a result of neural activity in the brain. Yet questions still remain.” It’s an amazing episode, and one that I feel should be mandatory viewing for anyone who is even remotely interested in the human experience and why we are here. So sit back, relax, and enjoy.
TO WATCH THE CHARLIE ROSE SPECIAL ON CONSCIOUSNESS CLICK HERE (AND CLICK ON THE WOMAN’S IMAGE TO BEGIN THE VIDEO PLAYER).