This is the question that scientists are unable to answer. It’s called: ‘The hard problem of consciousness.’ The reason for that is because consciousness is not measurable and most of the scientists today think that everything is physical. That’s why one day scientists are going to be stuck and are going to hit a wall. You have to understand that 99.99% of what exists is empty space and 0.01% is another type of emptiness. 99.99% of an atom is empty space. The entire Universe is actually nothing.
That’s why everything you see, is not real. It’s an illusion. In the Vedanta, they call it Maya. The perceived world, including people and other existence, is not what it appears to be. Maya makes you believe that the material world is real.
Nikola Tesla said: ‘The Day Science Begins to Study Non-Physical Phenomena, it Will Make More Progress in one Decade Than in All The Previous Centuries of its existence.’
I think the best definition that we can give for consciousness is: Consciousness is shapeless, formless, it’s not in space-time and it’s non-dimensional. Consciousness is what makes experience available. Without consciousness, there is no experience.
So the hard problem of consciousness is this: How does it come that you can see your screen right now? You are going to say: ‘Well, with my eyes.’ That’s not true, the images we see are made up of light reflected from the objects we look at. This light enters the eye through the cornea, which acts as a window at the front of the eye. The front part of the eye is curved, it bends the light, creating an upside-down image on the retina. So, you would see everything upside-down. Now you are going to say: ‘Aha! It’s my brain!’ Again, not true. There aren’t images in your brain. You have to see your brain as a machine that translates information that he receives. So now, where is this image? That’s consciousness. Everything takes place in consciousness. Consciousness is experiencing itself through this body.
We can make an experiment right now to show you what I’m saying. You are now looking at the screen. Look at the screen and at the same time, I want you to imagine a banana without closing your eyes. Somewhere you saw a fuzzy banana right? An invisible banana. The question is: Where is this banana? It’s not in your eyes neither in your brain.
Bonus: Everything that you can see right now is only 0.005% of the electromagnetic spectrum.