Roni Naor-Hofri

Consciousness in Pain: A New Model for Analysing Its Transformation

  • History and Philosophy of Science
  • Philosophy

When looking for an account that explains how pain changes consciousness, one finds that most studies in the phenomenology of pain focus either on the outcome of the change, or on how it affects the self, as a conscious object, and the self’s experiences in the world of objects. This paper focuses on the mechanism of consciousness, exploring the nature of the change that pain creates in consciousness and how exactly that change occurs. The paper provides a systematic, phenomenological inquiry in three phases: one identifies three essential attributes of consciousness, another identifies three essential attributes of pain, and a third analyses the outcome of the integration between both sets of attributes. The paper demonstrates how the change wrought by pain on the self, as a conscious object, allows the self to breach its boundaries as an object, and experience being a non-object, even if only in part and temporarily.

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