Best Books on Consciousness and The Brain in 2020

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What are the Best Books on Consciousness? Consciousness denotes the awareness of one’s thoughts, feelings, ideas, memories, sensations, and environments. Consciousness is one’s awareness of themselves and the world around them. This awareness differs from one person to another. If an individual can describe their experience, then it is a part of their consciousness. It is an ever-changing experience. Consciousness always shifts and changes from one thing to the other. For instance, now, you are focused on reading a book. The next moment your consciousness will shift to a memory of an adventurous trip you had last year. Again, you might think of going outside and have a burger. A change to your consciousness can bring in a shift in your perception, thinking, and understanding.

Last update on 2020-12-04 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Best Books on Consciousness

Consciousness is a critical process to understand. Here is a list of some of the best books on consciousness that might make it easier to understand the topic.

  1. Incognito, by David Eagleman

David Eagleman is an American neuroscientist, science communicator, and author. He is a professor at Stanford University and the CEO of NeoSensory. He also runs a non-profit organization called Centre for Science and Law.

According to researchers and psychologists, the part of our brain that remains conscious is like the tip of the iceberg. So what does the rest of our brain or mind do? Incognito is one of the best books on evolutionary psychology that gives you an answer to this question. In this book, Eagleman surprises the readers by taking them deep into our subconscious brain. Here, he explains the reasons behind not able to keep secrets. He also describes the reasons behind us hearing our name in a conversation which we are not even listening. This book explores the human brain by taking certain things into considerations like brain damage, dating, beauty, drugs, criminal law, and much more.

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Incognito: The Secret Lives of the Brain
Vintage Books; Eagleman, David (Author); English (Publication Language); 304 Pages - 05/15/2012 (Publication Date) - Vintage (Publisher)
$17.00 −$2.41 $14.59

Last update on 2020-12-05 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API


  1. The Road Less Travelled, by M. Scott Peck

Scott Peck served the US Army as the Assistant Chief Psychiatry and Neurology Consultant. He held the rank of Lieutenant Colonel in the army. After retiring from the military, he started a private practice and wrote several books.

Dr. Peck’s The Road Less Travelled is one of the best books on consciousness. This book has left a significant impact on both our intellectual and spiritual lives. It helps the readers to understand the loving nature of every relationship. The readers will take a new turn in their experience with the help of this book. The book also explains and differentiates between dependency and love. Besides, the readers will learn how to be a more considerate parent and discover their hidden potential.

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The Road Less Traveled, Timeless Edition: A New Psychology of Love, Traditional Values and Spiritual Growth
Great product!; M. Scott Peck (Author); English (Publication Language); 315 Pages - 02/04/2003 (Publication Date) - Touchstone (Publisher)
$18.00 −$6.01 $11.99

Last update on 2020-12-05 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API


  1. Humans, by Tom Phillips

Tom Phillips is an English painter, printmaker, and collagist. He has also authored some novels and poetry. Phillips had received several awards, including the John Moors Prize and Frances Williams Memorial Prize.

Human beings have evolved in the past seventy thousand years since their inception on this earth. They have built up their dominance in art, science, culture, trade, food chain, etc. But sometimes humans mess things up, and that changes everything. Humans provide an extensive view of humankind, drawing together history, science, culture, and politics. From human destruction to their glory – this book has it all. The book states the stories of famous and historical personalities and communities like Lucy, General Zhou Shou, the Austrian army’s attacks, and much more. This book describes how the simplest mistakes of human beings had changed the course of human evolution psychologically.

Humans: A Brief History of How We F*cked It All Up
Amazon Kindle Edition; Phillips, Tom (Author); English (Publication Language); 228 Pages - 05/07/2019 (Publication Date) - Hanover Square Press (Publisher)
$5.99

Last update on 2020-12-05 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API


  1. The Moral Animal, by Robert Wright

Robert Wright is an American author and journalist by profession. His writings mostly focus on history, science, politics, and religion. He is also a visiting professor at Union Theological Seminary and teaches Science and Religion.

The Moral Animal has become one of the best books on consciousness in the past few years. In this book, Wright has explained different features of our life with the help of evolutionary biology. He talks about human and animal behavior and mind and compares it with the evolutionary theory of Darwin. He explains how our genetic strategies can play a significant role in our everyday life. Wright also demonstrates the loving relationships among lovers, friends, and family. He explains psychological evolution through Darwin’s biological evolution.

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The Moral Animal: Why We Are, the Way We Are: The New Science of Evolutionary Psychology
The Moral Animal Why We Are the Way We Are The New Science of Evolutionary Psychology; Wright, Robert (Author)
$18.00 −$4.13 $13.87

Last update on 2020-12-04 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API


  1. The Better Angels of Our Nature, by Steven Pinker

Steven Pinker is a Canadian-American cognitive psychologist and linguist. He is a professor of Psychology at Harvard University. Pinker has specialized in the field of visual cognition and psycholinguistics.

We live in the most violent age of all time with rising crimes, terrorism, and war. But Pinker has proved us wrong in his book The Better Angels of Our Nature. According to him, the amount of violence has declined when compared to the beginning of human civilization. We had faced war, slavery, child abuse, infanticide, mass killings, horrific punishments, and so much more. Combining psychology and history, Pinker reveals the true kernel of human nature. He says that it is essential to understand the inner motives of human beings. Everyone has two sides of their life – one part is controlled by the inner demon and the other part by the angel. When the inner demon forces us to do something unethical, the angel turns us away from that path. And at the end, Pinker says that the angel becomes successful in reducing human violence.

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The Better Angels of Our Nature: Why Violence Has Declined
The Better Angels of Our Nature Why Violence Has Declined; Pinker, Steven (Author); English (Publication Language)
$21.00 −$5.55 $15.45

Last update on 2020-12-05 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API


  1. Free to Learn, by Peter Gray

Peter Gray is an American research professor of psychology at Boston College. He is also a scholar and a motivational speaker. He is the founder and board president of the Alliance for Self-Directed Education.

In Free to Learn, Gray claims that it is important to let children learn on their own. This will help them in their mental development and growth. If children are taught the same old method of learning, they will find it challenging to cope with the continuously changing world. So, children should be allowed to learn from their surroundings in their way or self-directed learning. This will help the children to have control over their lives, solve different types of problems, and make friends. It will also help them emotionally stable. This book is great for both parents and teachers who can guide their children and help them evolve psychologically. This book is one of the best books on consciousness.

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Free to Learn: Why Unleashing the Instinct to Play Will Make Our Children Happier, More Self-Reliant, and Better Students for Life
Hardcover Book; Gray, Peter (Author); English (Publication Language); 288 Pages - 03/05/2013 (Publication Date) - Basic Books (Publisher)
$27.99 −$17.72 $10.27

Last update on 2020-12-05 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API


  1. Spiritual Science, Higher Conscious Thinking and How to Access the Universal Consciousness, by Aage Nost

Aage Nost is an American doctor, politician, and writer. In 1975, he started a flight school, named Arrowhead Airways, Inc. along with his partner.  He was also an Accident Prevention Counsellor for the Federal Aviation Administration.

This book is one of the best books on consciousness. It discusses the power of the mind and its importance for our existence. The author explains time travel, immortality, spiritual healing, photographing ghosts, meditations, and much more. The book also provides insight into Jesus and his existence, according to biblical and non-biblical records. The author also talks about the creator of the Bible, universal consciousness, and the true potential of our mind. The book gives a detailed explanation of heaven and hell, death, reincarnation, and Karma. In short, the book provides techniques to improve physically and spiritually.

Spiritual Science, Higher Conscious Thinking, and How to Access The Universal Consciousness: Learn How To Expand The Power Of The Mind At Every Level of Existence
Nost, Aage (Author); English (Publication Language); 334 Pages - 01/29/2015 (Publication Date) - Outskirts Press (Publisher)
$25.95

Last update on 2020-12-05 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API


  1. Conscious, by Annaka Harris

Annaka Harris is an American author. Her writings mainly focus on neuroscience, meditation, consciousness, and philosophy of mind. She was also the co-founder of Project Reason, a non-profit science education group.

We all have these several questions in mind – What is consciousness? Why does it exist, and how does it arise? Why is that everyone has consciousness. Conscious wonderfully explains all these questions to the readers. The book discusses the philosophies and scientific findings of consciousness. This book makes our limited understanding of consciousness clear. It explains the whereabouts of consciousness and the reasons for it to arise. Whether it is an illusion or a natural phenomenon – the book has an answer to it all. Additionally, the book discusses artificial intelligence and its relation to consciousness. This book offers some stimulating arguments and allows the readers to change their ideas about consciousness.

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Conscious: A Brief Guide to the Fundamental Mystery of the Mind
Hardcover Book; Harris, Annaka (Author); English (Publication Language); 144 Pages - 06/04/2019 (Publication Date) - Harper (Publisher)
$21.99 −$5.64 $16.35

Last update on 2020-12-05 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API


  1. The Soul of an Octopus, by Sy Montgomery

Sy Montgomery is a naturalist, author, and scriptwriter. Her writings for children and adults have earned her several awards. Montgomery was awarded two honorary Doctorate degrees.

The Soul of an Octopus discovers the physical and emotional world of the octopus. Octopuses are generally sophisticated but intelligent creatures. And they make a significant bonding with human beings. Montgomery has visited aquarium tanks in New England, coral reefs of French Polynesia and the Gulf of Mexico to befriend octopuses. She came across many octopuses, like curious Kali, gentle Athena, joyful Karma, and others. But all of them had different personalities. They showed their skills and intelligence in countless ways.

Scientists are curious about the problem-solving skills and color-changing techniques of octopuses. The author illustrates a unique and beautiful love story between her and the octopuses. This book describes the journey of how two different minds meet each other. This book is one of the best books on consciousness.

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The Soul of an Octopus: A Surprising Exploration into the Wonder of Consciousness
Atria Books; Montgomery, Sy (Author); English (Publication Language); 272 Pages - 04/05/2016 (Publication Date) - Atria Books (Publisher)
$16.99 −$8.00 $8.99

Last update on 2020-12-05 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API


  1. The Nature of Consciousness, by Rupert Spira

Rupert Spira is a renowned English potter and studio potter. He also teaches internationally in the “direct path.” It is a method of spiritual self-inquiry through speech and writing. He has published several books on spiritual learnings.

We believe that consciousness is derived from matter. And this is the foundation of our world culture. The Nature of Consciousness describes how the materialistic assumption is the leading cause of human suffering. The book also explains the reasons for conflicts between different communities and nations. As a result of these conflicts, our environment is facing moral degradation. This book reveals all the misconceptions related to consciousness. The book suggests that we need to know the presence, primary, and the true nature of consciousness to expel all these misconceptions.

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The Nature of Consciousness: Essays on the Unity of Mind and Matter
Spira, Rupert (Author); English (Publication Language); 296 Pages - 06/01/2017 (Publication Date) - Sahaja (Publisher)
$21.95 −$1.46 $20.49

Last update on 2020-12-05 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API


Consciousness, in its purest form, is the awareness of internal and external existence. But this phenomenon remains a mystery and controversial despite countless researches and analyses. It is a state of mind that helps us differentiate between the right and the wrong, the good and the bad.

 

Frequently Asked Questions

 

  1. Which part of the brain is associated with consciousness?

The brain is mainly divided into three major regions – Cerebrum, Cerebellum, and Brainstem. The cerebrum is the largest structural unit of the brain. It is part of the forebrain or prosencephalon. Cerebral cortex, the outer portion of the cerebrum processes sensory and motor information. Its other primary function is to enable consciousness in our mind. To know more read our collected best books on consciousness.

  1. What is the relationship between consciousness and the brain?

Consciousness is a physical process that is controlled by the brain. But the process does not take place in the brain. Human consciousness arises at the intersection of three elements of animal behavior. These elements are – communication, play, and the use of tools. The combination of these three elements gives rise to awareness, which creates consciousness in human beings.

  1. What is the conscious and unconscious mind?

Sigmund Freud divided the mind into three different levels –

  • The Preconscious mind
  • The Conscious mind
  • The Unconscious mind

The conscious mind carries all our thoughts, beliefs, feelings, and memories. We are aware of this state of mind. We can talk and think logically when we are at this level.

The unconscious mind is like a container that reserves our feelings, thoughts, desires, and memories. These are stored outside of our conscious mind, and we are not aware of this state. The contents of the unconscious mind are very unpleasant, like anxiety, pain, conflict, etc.

  1. What is consciousness in psychology?

Consciousness refers to an individual’s state of awareness of their thoughts, beliefs, feelings, sensations, and environment. In other words, consciousness is one’s awareness of themselves and the world around them. One needs to be awake and aware to experience consciousness. This awareness is different in every individual. You can learn more from then mentioned 10 best books on consciousness.

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