Journal of Philosophical Investigations

Document Type : Research Paper


1 PhD Candidate of Theoretical Physics, University of Mazandaran, Babolsar, Iran

2 Distinguished Professor in Sharif University of Technology, Iran

3 Professor in University of Mazandaran, Babolsar, Iran


As generally accepted, consciousness or mind and material brain are closely related to each other; but how? Quantum mechanics is a new pathway to understand the hard problem of consciousness and its relation to the brain. Consciousness has specific properties such as unity, irreducibility, non-locality, etc. The completely different features of classical physics (locality, reducibility, determinacy, etc.) hindered the success of scientists to study consciousness. But quantum mechanics with its features (non-locality, irreducibility, indeterminacy, etc.) gave scientists hope to study consciousness. Several quantum approaches to consciousness have been proposed in recent decades; the most important point about these approaches is that each one has used its own philosophy to determine its viewpoint about the mind’s nature and even its quantum approach. In general, all scientific theories are based on some metaphysical principles which come from the worldview of scientists. In this article four contemporary approaches are discussed: The Eccles-Beck, Stapp, Penrose-Hameroff, and Avicenna-Bohm theories; philosophical and scientific points are highlighted for each of them. Finally, the theory of Top-Down Causation is discussed because we think it can provide a fertile philosophical ground for theories of “mind-brain relation” and “quantum consciousness”.


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