Of course, once they did, they found themselves deep in huge conundrums:
We sometimes forget how far we are from solving the mystery of consciousness.
An anecdote from 1994 might help us understand. Picture an utterly boring, pointless conference in Tucson, Arizona, one of whose attendees was an obscure philosopher from Australia, scheduled to give the third talk. And shook everything up:News, “The day philosophers started to take consciousness seriously” at Mind Matters News
Some useful work is being done. We are discovering, for example, that
— people in a persistent vegetative state can have active conscious lives
– people can control artificial limbs by thoughts alone
– in, perhaps, the strangest development, the mind can sometimes discover information when detached from the clinically dead brain.
None of these discoveries confirms the materialism with which the academic world had become so comfortable.News, “The day philosophers started to take consciousness seriously” at Mind Matters News
Takehome: We have learned a great deal about consciousness in the past half century but none of it supports materialism.
See also: Claim: “Spirituality” circuit in the brain has been identified Really? Is that even possible? No single definition fits all spirituality which is why there could not be a brain circuit that explains all spirituality.