Two neuroscientists trace a sweeping new vision of consciousness across eighteen increasingly intelligent minds, from microbes to humankind and beyond.

Why do minds exist? How did mud and stone develop into beings that can experience longing, regret, love, and compassion—beings that are aware of their own experience? Until recently, science offered few answers to these existential questions. Journey of the Mind is the first book to offer a unified account of the mind that explains how consciousness, language, the Self, and civilization emerged incrementally out of chaos.
The journey begins three billion years ago with the emergence of the simplest possible mind, a nanoscopic archeon, then ascends through amoebas, worms, frogs, birds, monkeys, and AI, examining successively smarter ways of thinking. The authors explain the mathematical principles generating conscious experience and show, through vivid illustrations and accessible prose, how these principles led cities and democratic nations to develop new forms of consciousness—the self-aware “superminds.” Journey of the Mind concludes by contemplating a higher stage of consciousness already emerging—and the ultimate fate of all minds in the universe.

*Includes a downloadable PDF of illustrations from the book
What Sapiens did for our understanding of the evolution of the human race, Journey of The Mind has done for the evolution of complex thought and consciousness itself. —Annie Duke, author of Quit

Journey of the Mind is a page-turner that helps us understand the incomparable work of one of the most brilliant of all neuroscientists. This is the book I would take with me if stranded on a desert island. —Barbara Oakley, best-selling author of A Mind for Numbers

This enthralling book charts a quantum leap from the prebiotic universe to sentience and selfhood. This is an accessible, eclectic and enlightening book that—once read—is difficult to stop thinking about.—Karl Friston, University College London, ranked by Semantic Scholar as the most influential neuroscientist in the world

Every page of Journey of the Mind is packed with fascinating insight. This is a brilliant book that will change the way you think about thinking. —David Epstein, best-selling author of Range and The Sports Gene

Journey of the Mind explains a lot about the brain and its evolution in plain, accessible language without the technical abbreviations that make most neuroscience reading so unpleasant.…A daring book and an absorbing read. —Peter Sterling, University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine, coauthor of Principles of Neural Design

This deceptively simple and scientifically grounded account ventures up the ladder of chaos to the rich possibilities for our collective supermind. An encouragingly optimistic reminder of how our shared experience and common understanding of reality far surpass our superficial differences.—Douglas Rushkoff, professor of media theory and digital economics at CUNY/Queens and author of Team Human

In an intellectual tour de force they offer an imaginative tale of who we are and how we came to be that will keep you reading into the wee hours until the last page.—Jeffrey Lieberman, author of Shrinks

A mind-bending survey….an original take on the nature of consciousness that gives readers plenty to think about.—Publishers Weekly

[F]ascinating argument for a 'hidden connectedness of all minds,' from primitive bacteria to AI–enhanced human intelligence.… [Ogas and Gaddam’s] descriptive language is sharp and engaging.... [They] imbue every detail with awe and enthusiasm, a reminder to readers that the very science underpinning their theories is only possible because of the wondrous machinations of the human mind itself.… Packed with insight and astonishing in scope, this book offers an original perspective on thinking and consciousness.—Kirkus Reviews (starred review)