The Ego Tunnel by Thomas Metzinger

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We’re used to thinking about the self as an independent entity, something that we either have or are. In The Ego Tunnel, philosopher Thomas Metzinger claims otherwise: No such thing as a self exists. The conscious self is the content of a model created by our brain—an internal image, but one we cannot experience as an image. Everything we experience is “a virtual self in a virtual reality.”

But if the self is not “real,” why and how did it evolve? How does the brain construct it? Do we still have souls, free will, personal autonomy, or moral accountability? In a time when the science of cognition is becoming as controversial as evolution, The Ego Tunnel provides a stunningly original take on the mystery of the mind.


About Thomas Metzinger

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Thomas Metzinger directs the Theoretical Philosophy Group at Johannes Gutenberg University in Mainz, Germany. He lives in Berlin.
Published March 17, 2009 by Basic Books. 291 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction, Science & Math, Law & Philosophy, Health, Fitness & Dieting, Nature & Wildlife. Non-fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for The Ego Tunnel


If you’ve ever had a lucid dream, you certainly discovered the miraculous way the brain can construct a virtual world with impeccable detail and without perceptual input.

Aug 26 2010 | Read Full Review of The Ego Tunnel

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