The "Quantum Underground": Where Life and Consciousness Originate
Biophysics of Consciousness: A Foundational Approach
As our knowledge of reductionist details of living systems continues to grow, the gap in understanding life and consciousness remains wide. Progress has been made, e.g., biological organisms are seen as complex hierarchical amalgamations of elements interacting in self-similar, “scaleinvariant” patterns within and across spatio-temporal scales (“1/f”). But the mechanism for trans-scalar communication is unknown, as are the origin and foundation, i.e., the “bottom floor” of scale-invariant systems in biology. Here, we describe scale-invariant hierarchies in brain and living organisms in general, originating in a biomolecular “quantum underground” pervading neurons, glia and all living cells, most specifically within cytoskeletal microtubules. The quantum underground is a non-polar solubility phase composed largely of π-electron resonance clouds of aromatic amino acids, similar to pi-resonance arrays mediating quantum coherence in photosynthesis proteins. In the brain, the quantum underground is identified as the origin of consciousness by the Meyer-Overton correlation, showing where anesthetics act to erase consciousness while sparing non-conscious brain activities. Evidence points to anesthetics acting to dampen quantum dipole oscillations in the “Meyer-Overton quantum underground” within brain neuronal microtubules. These quantum dipole oscillations are seen as the “inward apex,” the origin of scale-invariant processes in consciousness and life.
World Scientific Publishing
Hameroff, S. R.,
Tuszynski, J. A.
(2016). The "Quantum Underground": Where Life and Consciousness Originate. Biophysics of Consciousness: A Foundational Approach.
Available at: https://nsuworks.nova.edu/cps_facbooks/621