"Are we hidden away behind the veil of reality, operating our bodies through an antenna-like brain? Or are we the quantum uncertainty of entangled molecular bricks deep within the neuron?"

This question has theological implications, so theology might provide some clues to the answer as well. Scripture teaches that to be embodied is our natural state (we are created originally with bodies, and in the New Heaven and New Earth we have resurrected bodies free of the problematic sin corruption you mention at the beginning.)

At the same time, scripture takes as an assumption that "we" can exist separately from those bodies in the post-death spiritual state, unless one ascribes to some kind of quantum-enhanced theory of soul sleep. Otherwise we cannot exist *solely* within our neurons, for those will someday die and decay, but we will persist in some other state waiting for all things to be made new.

There is also the widely-attested paranormal phenomenon of out-of-body-experiences, anything from temporary operating table deaths to astral projection. Unless we are to summarily dismiss every testimony of such, we must conclude that there is indeed some portion of "us" that can observe and be aware of itself which is not tied to the physical neurons. It seems that there is a ghost in the shell, which can leave the shell and exist apart from it without suffering total loss of self, but that is neither the original natural order of things nor, if scripture is to be believed, the final eternal state of them.

One solution would be that we exist in a higher dimension that we are currently capable of observing. (Personally I think this must be the case.) What might be muddying the waters of free will vs. determinism is if we are fated to be translated into higher dimensions of potentiality beyond which point free will would not be an illusion, and that timeless free will belonging to our future (but same) selves causes what look like paradoxes at our current deterministic level of dimensional awareness.

So iff* the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.

(*spelling intentional)

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May 6, 2023·edited May 6, 2023

Neurons have dynamic information storage capacity; they are constantly forming and pruning connections (synapses). While a neuron has only one axon, its "decision" to fire (propagate an axon potential) or not is a summation of excitatory and inhibitory inputs from many other neurons.

Memories are most probably encoded in circuits of neurons which activate each other; some of the circuitry is consistent, but other pieces of it are unique to each memory.

1 neuron = 1 bit/byte isn't really a useful analogy.

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