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How Vedanta Explains Conscious Subjective Experience

Syamala D. Hari


What is consciousness? Why does a purely physical lifeless system never seems to exhibit consciousness whereas human beings (and probably some other living beings) do? Can we explain subjective experience in objective (scientific) terms? These are some of the questions being debated by modern researchers of consciousness coming from both physical and social disciplines and philosophies. The modern philosopher Chalmers says that answering why some physical processes in the brain (body) are accompanied by experience, and why a given physical process generates a specific experience for example, experience of red or green is the “hard problem” of consciousness. Consciousness, the mind, the body, and their relations were thoroughly analyzed in the Indian philosophy (Vedanta) of ancient times. In this article, we describe how Vedanta explains occurrence of conscious subjective experience in living beings.

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ISSN: 2153-8212