Vol. 3 No. 2 (2019)
Feature Articles

A scientific rationale for consciousness

Marc Henry
Université de Strasbourg, UMR 7140, 4 Rue Blaise Pascal, 67000 Strasbourg
Jean-Pierre Gerbaulet
N-LIGHT Endowment Fund, 30 rue de Cronstadt, 75015 Paris

Published 2019-09-29


  • Consciousness,
  • meaning,
  • information,
  • activity,
  • matter,
  • neurosciences
  • ...More

How to Cite

Henry, M., & Gerbaulet, J.-P. (2019). A scientific rationale for consciousness. Substantia, 3(2), 37-54. https://doi.org/10.13128/Substantia-634


Consciousness is a concept that can be easily experimented but not easily defined. We show that the same observation applies to information, entropy and even energy. The best we can do is thus to generate and present “identity-cards” of these notions by listing their observable attributes with the help of mathematics, logics, information theory and thermodynamics. From a top-down approach starting from a view of reality based on a universal information field, emerges a ternary logical structure of consciousness that further generates, through meaning, a dualistic space-time continuum populated with an infinite number of “things”. The validity of our logical structure is backed by quotations from topmost scientists and by various mappings such as famous previous models used in philosophy and science. Implications in neurosciences are also briefly discussed.