The Hard Problem of Consciousness in the Light of Onto-Gnoseological Uncertainty

Ekaterina Nikolaevna Gnatik, Sergey Alexandrovich Lokhov, Dmitry Valerievich Mamchenkov, Maria Petrovna Matyushova



Purpose: The main purpose of this article is to show that the paradigm of viewing the ‘hard problem’ of consciousness in analytic philosophy makes it a pseudo-problem rather than a ‘hard problem’. The objectives of this research included showing the reasons for the authors’ thesis, demonstrating the irreducibility of consciousness as a special layer of reality, and proposing a way to overcome these difficulties.

Design/methodology/approach: In this article, the ‘hard problem’ of consciousness is viewed from the standpoints of the transcendental-phenomenological and dialectical approaches and is analyzed through the prism of the principle of onto-gnoseological uncertainty.

Findings: It is shown that the way of formulating the ‘hard problem’ in the analytical philosophical tradition inevitably makes it a pseudo-problem. At the same time, with the consistent realization of the principle of onto-gnoseological uncertainty, the antinomy of solutions to the problems of consciousness is eliminated, which opens up a way to a productive solution of problems related to the interpretation of consciousness both in natural sciences and in philosophy.

Originality/value: This research reveals the methodological potential of applying the principle of onto-gnoseological uncertainty to the problems that arise in modern philosophy in connection with the achievements of natural sciences.


hard problem of consciousness; consciousness and brain; subjective reality; qualia; onto-gnoseological uncertainty

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