It may be interesting to compare our considerations with subjective viewpoints that have been expressed with regard to the nature of the progression of conscious experience. For example, support for consciousness consisting of sequences of individual, discrete events is found in Buddhism; trained meditators describe distinct "flickerings" in their experience of reality (Tart, 1995). Buddhist texts portray consciousness as "momentary collections of mental phenomena", and as "distinct, unconnected and impermanent moments which perish as soon as they arise." Each conscious moment successively becomes, exists, and disappears - its existence is instantaneous, with no duration in time, as a point has no length. Our normal perceptions, of course, are seemingly continuous, presumably as we perceive "movies" as continuous despite their actual makeup being a series of frames. Some Buddhist writings even quantify the frequency of conscious moments. For example the Sarvaastivaadins (von Rospatt, 1995) described 6,480,000 "moments" in 24 hours (an average of one "moment" per 13.3 msec), and some Chinese Buddhism as one "thought" per 20 msec. These accounts, including variations in frequency, are consistent with our proposed Orch OR events. For example a 13.3 msec pre-conscious interval would correspond with an Orch OR involving 4 x 1010coherent tubulins, a 0.13 msec interval would correspond with 4 x 1012 coherent tubulins, and a 20 msec interval with 2.5 x 1010 coherent tubulins. Thus Buddhist "moments of experience," Whitehead "occasions of experience," and our proposed Orch OR events seem to correspond tolerably well with one another..
Questions referring to personal experience:
9. Is the self identical with the body?
10. ...or is it different from the body?
The Buddha remained silent when asked these fourteen questions. He described them as a net and refused to be drawn into such a net of theories, speculations, and dogmas. He said that it was because he was free of bondage to all theories and dogmas that he had attained liberation. Such speculations, he said, are attended by fever, unease, bewilderment, and suffering, and it is by freeing oneself of them that one achieves liberation.
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