14th out of 25 books — 9 voters
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Mind Time: The Temporal Factor in Consciousness
Our subjective inner life is what really matters to us as human beings--and yet we know relatively little about how it arises. Over a long and distinguished career Benjamin Libet has conducted experiments that have helped us see, in clear and concrete ways, how the brain produces conscious awareness. For the first time, Libet gives his own account of these experiments and ...more
Paperback, 248 pages
Published October 1st 2005 by Harvard University Press
(first published 2004)
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The scientific evidence that not only is our conscious perception of the world shifted back in time to compensate for the .5 second delay that is an effect of our perceptual apparatus, but that our conscious "decisions" may actually originate in the unconscious and that we live an illusion of being in control. Or rather, the only control we may have is a veto power that allows us to select from a shower of impulses that trickle down out of our unconsciousness. Subliminal or sublime?
Embarrassingly, I'll admit that The main reason for me reading this book, was for its contribution to the free will vs. determinism debate. This made me feel biased to pick up only the details that suited my purpose and expectations, which is not intellectually honest at all. Nevertheless, I am genuinely interested in neuroscience but lack knowledge the technicalities and experimental procedures of the field. Hence, the descriptions of experimental neoroscience in this book, were way above my ...more
Based mainly on experiments done in Libet's lab on task-performing humans. Not a substitute for reading the primary literature, but highly engaging, accessible and thoughtful, and pointedly logical. A good book to recommend to non-neuroscientist friends who are intrigued about (or have never previously contemplated) the differences between various components of awareness (detection of sensory input to the brain, assembly of signals into non-conscious and/or conscious awareness).
Reminds you of t ...more
Reminds you of t ...more
The writing is stilted and at times redundant. He's not much of an author. It gets five stars because the research he talks about is pretty mind-blowing (pun partially intended). Our consciousness has a time delay. Life is reverbed before it reaches us. No kidding!
Jan 21, 2008 Schlingel rated it really liked it · review of another edition
Recommends it for: everyone who is interrested in the colleration between your mind and your brain.
It contains pretty much information and no suggestions which are not proven by experiments. The experiments are well described and the conclusions are good explained!