Cognitive Neurodynamics

, Volume 13, Issue 1, pp 121–123 | Cite as

Placing pure experience of Eastern tradition into the neurophysiology of Western tradition

  • Andrew A. FingelkurtsEmail author
  • Alexander A. Fingelkurts
Brief Communication

While the presence or absence of consciousness plays the central role in the moral/ethical decisions when dealing with patients with disorders of consciousness (DOC), recently it is criticized as not adequate due to number of reasons, among which are the lack of the uniform definition of consciousness and consequently uncertainty of diagnostic criteria for it, as well as irrelevance of some forms of consciousness for determining a patient’s interests and wishes. In her article, Dr. Specker Sullivan reexamined the meaning of consciousness in the DOC taxonomy and proposed to go away from the routinely used clinical definition of consciousness as “wakeful awareness”, and adopt the meaning that is common in the Eastern tradition which is a form of “pure experience” (Specker Sullivan 2018). She further argued that understanding consciousness as a “pure experience” is ethically relevant for DOC patients. This suggestion is original, novel and important since it preserves the importance of...


  1. Chadha M (2017) Reflexive awareness and no-self: Dignāga debated by Uddyotakara and Dharmakīrti. In: Ganeri J (ed) The Oxford handbook of Indian philosophy. Oxford University Press, New York, pp 272–288Google Scholar
  2. Déli E, Tozzi A, Peters JF (2017) Relationships between short and fast brain timescales. Cogn Neurodyn 11(6):539–552CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Fingelkurts AA, Fingelkurts AA (2011) Persistent operational synchrony within brain default-mode network and self-processing operations in healthy subjects. Brain Cogn 75(2):79–90. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Fingelkurts AA, Fingelkurts AA (2017) Longitudinal dynamics of 3-dimensional components of selfhood after severe traumatic brain injury: a qEEG case study. Clin EEG Neurosci 48:327–337CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Fingelkurts AA, Fingelkurts AA (2018) Actual physical potentiality for consciousness. AJOB Neurosci 9:24–25CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Fingelkurts AA, Fingelkurts AA, Neves CFH (2010) Natural world physical, brain operational, and mind phenomenal space-time. Phys Life Rev 7:195–249. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Fingelkurts AA, Fingelkurts AA, Bagnato S, Boccagni C, Galardi G (2012a) Toward operational architectonics of consciousness: basic evidence from patients with severe cerebral injuries. Cogn Process 13:111–131. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Fingelkurts AA, Fingelkurts AA, Bagnato S, Boccagni C, Galardi G (2012b) DMN operational synchrony relates to self-consciousness: evidence from patients in vegetative and minimally conscious states. Open Neuroimag J 6:55–68. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Fingelkurts AA, Fingelkurts AA, Neves CFH (2013a) Consciousness as a phenomenon in the operational architectonics of brain organization: criticality and self-organization considerations. Chaos Solitons Fractals 55:13–31. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Fingelkurts AA, Fingelkurts AA, Bagnato S, Boccagni C, Galardi G (2013b) Prognostic value of resting-state electroencephalography structure in disentangling vegetative and minimally conscious states: a preliminary study. Neurorehabil Neural Repair 27:345–354. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Friedrich O (2011) Knowledge of partial awareness in disorders of consciousness: implications for ethical evaluations? Neuroethics 6:13–23. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Mappes TA (2003) Persistent vegetative state, prospective thinking, and advance directives. Kennedy Inst Ethics J 13:119–139CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Monti MM, Laureys S, Owen AM (2010) The vegetative state. BMJ 341:c3765CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Specker Sullivan L (2018) Pure experience and disorders of consciousness. AJOB Neurosci 9:115–117CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Vukov J (2018) When does consciousness matter? Lessons from the minimally conscious state. AJOB Neurosci 9:5–15CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Nature B.V. 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Andrew A. Fingelkurts
    • 1
    Email author
  • Alexander A. Fingelkurts
    • 1
  1. 1.BM-Science – Brain and Mind Technologies Research CentreEspooFinland

Personalised recommendations