But what is this “you”?

The Ego Tunnel: The Science of the Mind and the Myth of the SelfThe Ego Tunnel: The Science of the Mind and the Myth of the Self by Thomas Metzinger
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

“Attention is a finite commodity, and it is absolutely essential to living a good life. [ … ] Our brains can generate only a limited amount of this precious resource every day.”

So I will be brief. As a relative newcomer to consciousness studies and neuroscience, this book was a little bit like taking the Red Pill in the Matrix. I would frequently find myself reading a passage, trying to digest it’s meaning and then looking up from the page with changed perception of the world around me. In this book there are convincing observations about how our brains work that are genuinely mind altering in a really fascinating way.

It won’t be for everyone. If you’ve got certain firmly held religious beliefs or if you just find the idea that there probably is no such thing as a “self” a bit scary, you might want to stick to the blue pill. But as science unravels more and more of the secrets of the brain, and offers humankind the possibility to develop ever more sophisticated ways to alter how we experience our existence, there’s a lot to be said for using some of our precious resources of attention trying to come to terms with what’s at stake. Thomas Metzinger’s book is a very good place to start.

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