Essay on Christof Koch and the Theory of Consciousness

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Consciousness was first described and introduced by Sigmund Freud and Friedrich Nietzsche (Crick & Koch, 2001). It has been described as a realm of the mind that controls human behaviour. However consciousness is not accessible to conscious introspection, self-examination or a source of knowledge. On the contrary, Christof Koch, a neuroscientist collaborator of Francis Crick, describes unconsciousness as any neuronal activity that does not give rise to conscious sensation, thought or memory (Crick & Koch, 2001). Though unconsciousness differs in many different ways to consciousness, it works in a waking state that deals with cause and effect and the logical spontaneous processes in order to process information. On the contrary unconscious …show more content…
However, he believes in order to understand what consciousness exactly is, it has to be backed by empirical results and facts that the mental state of consciousness must be observed in its physiological processes (Koch, 2003). Therefore in order to understand the neural mechanisms of perception and behaviour it must be achieved by examining the brain. Therefore he refers to this process as Neural Correlates of Consciousness (NCC), where it constitutes of the minimum set of neuronal events that forms a complete conscious perception (Metzinger, 2001). The reason he refers to the minimal set of neurons is because, the brain gives rise to many different kinds of conscious experiences, but what he is trying to find is where the components are produced, in other words, he hopes to explain the NCC in its causal terms. Koch believes consciousness is unique and exclusive to the owner of the brain as it gives rise to the distinctive individual behaviour in every person. This would also explain why some neurones deal with consciousness and others do not. For example why do we have we feel pain but we have no consciousness for our digestive system. Koch and crick believe that the NCC deals with the organisms’ environment of which it is currently aware.
Koch believes that the most difficult aspect of consciousness is the Hard Problem of qualia, which are the subjective

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