We explore the idea that perceptual experiences do not approximate properties of an “objective” world, but provide a simplified, species-specific, user interface to the world. Donald Hoffman introduced it as the Interface Theory of Perception. Hoffman also introduced his Conscious Realism thesis: the objective world consists of a social network of ‘conscious agents’ and their experiences. Thus consciousness creates all objects and properties of the physical world, reversing the traditional mind-body problem.
Using evolutionary game theory, we support interface theory with a theorem saying that perceptual strategies reporting the truth will, under natural selection, be driven to extinction by those tuned instead to fitness.
A mathematically precise definition of “conscious agents” is proposed, leading to a non-dualistic, dynamical theory of conscious process in which both observer and observed have the same structure, with many possible interfaces.
In support of conscious realism, we then discuss two theorems showing that a conscious agent can see geometric and probabilistic structures that are not necessarily in the world but properties of the conscious agent itself and different agents may see the world as having different (even incompatible!) structures. We will also discuss a way in which interfaces represent a dramatic compression of information which is functional to the agent.
This suggests that space-time is a description of location and dynamics on the perceptual interface of human conscious agents; that the “objects” of Physics are akin to icons on that interface; and that “phenomena” appear as the interactions those icons seem — to us — to be having.
What motivates a species to evolve its particular interface? Federico Faggin has proposed a mechanism for the evolution of interfaces: that it is the desire for comprehension, or self-knowing, that drives this evolution. What is required next is a theory of the process of self-knowing.
Women mystics and wisdom beings across the spiritual traditions
Is there any behavior that we can say for certain is unique to humans?
The source of capacity to optimize our experience...
How we can uncover the traumas embedded in our social body and work together to heal these wounds
Daniel Siegel introduces the Wheel of Awareness, a representation of the structure of mind. Research…
Peter Russell explains that most human beings—unlike animals—focus on the past and the future, which means they spend their time in a state of discontent.
What if we put into every day practice the scientific truths that we know?
Peter Russell in conversation with the audience at SAND18 US.
As the outdated patriarchal structures rise up in backlash to their inevitable downfall, the need for a more sustainable world paradigm couldn’t be greater
Dzogchen, the bardo, sleep and the yoga of dreams
What may or may not be appropriate behavior for a spiritual teacher?
Cognition, or mind, is the very process of life itself, which requires neither a brain nor a nervous system
Nonduality and Healing from Trauma - The Realization Process
How do the different spiritual traditions view being human?
Can you live "IN" the Dream world with absolute integrity and authenticity
At the 2018 SAND Conference, David Ellzey physically and wordlessly tells the story that resolves the seeming paradox of being both human and transcendent.
Mirabai Starr in conversation with the audience at SAND18 US
This talk explains current research into the structures within the brain
How can there be intelligence without consciousness?
In a passionate presentation in praise of emotion, Zhen Dao offers a reframe of the traditional dichotomy…
Donald Hoffman reminds us that we can predict people's choices up to seven seconds before they are conscious of making that choice.
In the midst of a global lion crisis that treats Africa’s most sacred animals as a killing commodity...
Charles Eisenstein answers questions from the audience at SAND18 US.
When we engage in the distortion that the relative plane is separate from the absolute, we ignore the reality of the illusion.
Unveil the obstacles that block creativity and host them in a way...
Fritjof Capra answers questions from the audience at SAND18 US
Discover the world of magic mushrooms
Rupert Spira in conversation
When we know ourselves as this whole which subsumes everything, we cease to diminish or dismiss the mystery of being human
A four-billion-year-old cycling evolutionary engine of creation lifted us improbable and beautiful human beings into existence.
Our human-ness will become more and more threatened by AI
How the experienced self is put together out of memories and feelings.
Silent awareness is mostly drawn to light, sound, color, beauty, movement, patterns and contrast.
Philosopher, scholar and longtime observer of culture and behavior the world over, Jean Houston shares…
Daniel Siegel answers questions from the audience at SAND18 US.
Being fully human requires the awakening of the deep Heart as well as the full embrace of the vulnerable human heart.
To think of the human stage as simply for enlightenment shortchanges the potential of humanity.
The “awe-full” qualities of horror and terror may share essential roots with those underlying transformative states such as flow, awe, presence, timelessness and ecstasy.
Creativity can be seen as a state of natural flow...
An "immersion" lecture into the world of psylocibin, mycelium and evolution of consciousness
Awakened living realizes that the absolute and the relative dimensions of our Being are simply “not-two.”
Stuart Hameroff, co-founder of the Toward a Science of Consciousness conference, follows a brief overview…
What does it take to recognize our true human qualities and express them in the world?
James Fadiman fieds questions at SAND18 US
21st-Century science is on the verge of recreating the processes that may have brought life into being
This presentation will explore the nature of the psychic realm, where it fits into the spiritual spectrum, and how to avoid the common pitfalls and potential to get stuck there.
Bob Thurman delights the audience at SAND 2018 with his lighthearted approach to the wisdom and the…
In this memorable conversation from SAND 18 Peter Levine, the father of trauma therapy work, and Thomas Huebl, a spiritual teacher known for his work integrating healing of collective trauma, discuss the relationship between healing trauma and...
The mystery and power of the creative process can perhaps be best understood through the lens of the birthing process.
Electromagnetic energy in the brain enables brain matter to create our consciousness
A new type of experiment could get us closer to grasping human consciousness.
Jeremy England says spiritual ideas can inform our scientific quest for the origin of life.
Consciousness may be an emergent property from a bunch of background chatter.
What science and my unusual brain are teaching us about the convergence of reality, love, and the senses
We are aware of thinking and acting, and we typically think this is what neurons and brains are for.
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