The Atlantic discusses how the state between sleep and wake can help solve the mystery of human consciousness.

A recent proof-of-principle study, led by Noreika, intensively studied a single individual as he repeatedly transitioned into sleep while the brain’s electrical activity was recorded using EEG scalp electrodes. The would-be-sleeper was asked to press a button when he experienced an intrusive thought or image, and to verbally report it to the sleep researchers. The descriptions were pleasantly bizarre: “putting a horse into a sort of violin case and zipping it up,” “the phraselearning to consume consciously from a master,” “visual image of a curled up music manuscript.”