How the Self Controls Its Brain

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How the Self Controls Its Brain
How the Self Controls Its Brain - bookcover.jpg
Author John Carew Eccles
Country Australia
Language English
Subject Psychology
Publisher Springer-Verlag
Publication date
Media type Print
ISBN 3-540-56290-7
OCLC 29634892
128/.2 20
LC Class B105.M55 .E33 1994

How the Self Controls Its Brain[1] is a book by Sir John Eccles, proposing a theory of philosophical dualism, and offering a justification of how there can be mind-brain action without violating the principle of the conservation of energy. The model was developed jointly with the nuclear physicist Friedrich Beck in the period 1991-1992.[2][3][4]

Eccles called the fundamental neural units of the cerebral cortex "dendrons", which are cylindrical bundles of neurons arranged vertically in the six outer layers or laminae of the cortex, each cylinder being about 60 micrometres in diameter. Eccles proposed that each of the 40 million dendrons is linked with a mental unit, or "psychon", representing a unitary conscious experience. In willed actions and thought, psychons act on dendrons and, for a moment, increase the probability of the firing of selected neurons through quantum tunneling effect in synaptic exocytosis, while in perception the reverse process takes place.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ John C. Eccles, How the Self Controls its Brain, Berlin: Springer-Verlag, 1994. ISBN 3-540-56290-7.
  2. ^ Friedrich Beck (2008). "My Odyssey with Sir John Eccles". NeuroQuantology. 6 (2): 161–163. 
  3. ^ Friedrich Beck, John C. Eccles (1992). "Quantum aspects of brain activity and the role of consciousness" (PDF). Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. 89 (23): 11357–11361. doi:10.1073/pnas.89.23.11357. PMC 50549Freely accessible. PMID 1333607. 
  4. ^ Friedrich Beck, John C. Eccles (1998). "Quantum processes in the brain: A scientific basis of consciousness". Cognitive Studies: Bulletin of the Japanese Cognitive Science Society. 5 (2): 95–109.