What we ask is for a science that's really committed to the scientific spirit of openness but at the same time very rigorous.

Alexander Moreira-Almeida, MD, PhD

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400+ Scientists, Professors, Doctors and Thought Leaders

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Lucid Dreaming and Living Lucidly: Gateway to the Inner Self
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The Galileo Commission

A project of the Scientific and Medical Network, the Commission has produced a comprehensive report on the impact of materialism on science, written by Harald Walach with input from 90 advisers in 30 universities.

Full Report Layman's Guide Join

The Galileo Commission report arrives in a critical and unprecedented moment in our history, where the need for a qualitative change in science has never been so apparent and pressing.

– Dr Vasileios Basios, University of Brussels

Recommended Resources

Podcasts

Waking Cosmos Podcast

Waking Cosmos
with Adrian Nelson

Exploring the nature of consciousness, reality, and life’s place in the universe.

Imaginal Inspirations Podcast

Imaginal Inspirations
with David Lorimer

Transformational authors and scientists discuss the experiences, people and books that have shaped them.

Navigating Consciousness Podcast logo

Navigating Consciousness
with Rupert Sheldrake

A wide ranging discussion of consciousness at the intersection of science and spirituality.

Moon balloon

A fascinating review paper on studies of dream recall as we age, published in the journal Nature and Science of Sleep. Written by Anastasia Mangiaruga, Serena Scarpelli, Chiara Bartolacci, and Luigi De Gennaro of the Department of Psychology, University of Rome “Sapienza”, Rome, Italy.

Spotlight on dream recall: the ages of dreams

Abstract

Brain and sleep maturation covary across different stages of life. At the same time, dream generation and dream recall are intrinsically dependent on the development of neural systems. The aim of this paper is to review the existing studies about dreaming in infancy, adulthood, and the elderly stage of life, assessing whether dream mentation may reflect changes of the underlying cerebral activity and cognitive processes.

It should be mentioned that some evidence from childhood investigations, albeit still weak and contrasting, revealed a certain correlation between cognitive skills and specific features of dream reports. In this respect, infantile amnesia, confabulatory reports, dream-reality discerning, and limitation in language production and emotional comprehension should be considered as important confounding factors. Differently, growing evidence in adults suggests that the neurophysiological mechanisms underlying the encoding and retrieval of episodic memories may remain the same across different states of consciousness. More directly, some studies on adults point to shared neural mechanisms between waking cognition and corresponding dream features.

A general decline in the dream recall frequency is commonly reported in the elderly, and it is explained in terms of a diminished interest in dreaming and in its emotional salience. Although empirical evidence is not yet available, an alternative hypothesis associates this reduction to an age-related cognitive decline. The state of the art of the existing knowledge is partially due to the variety of methods used to investigate dream experience.

Very few studies in elderly and no investigations in childhood have been performed to understand whether dream recall is related to specific electrophysiological pattern at different ages. Most of all, the lack of longitudinal psychophysiological studies seems to be the main issue. As a main message, we suggest that future longitudinal studies should collect dream reports upon awakening from different sleep states and include neurobiological measures with cognitive performances.

Read Full Paper

AAPS logo

The Academy for the Advancement of Postmaterialist Sciences has created a Graduate Student Research Award Competition to support those interested in researching consciousness and its applications to health care and other related topics.

The award is up to $1,000 per student, with $500 awarded to the University to be spent on the student’s research project at the onset, and an additional $500 awarded directly to the student if the project is published in a peer-reviewed journal.

Proposals for a graduate-level research project are due each calendar year by September 1 from Student members of AAPS. Results of the submission reviews will be available October 1, and the Award will start on November 15. The award is for a possible total of $1000, with $500 awarded to the University to be spent on the student’s research project at the onset and an additional $500 awarded directly to the student if the project is published in a peer-reviewed journal.

Learn more!

With the aim of encouraging research into the healthy human being, both from the physical and spiritual point of view, BIAL Foundation now opens a new call of its Grants Programme for Scientific Research 2022/2023.

Supported fields: Psychophysiology and Parapsychology.

Addressees: Scientific researchers, either individually or in groups.

Duration/commencement: Maximum 3 years; commencement between 1st of January and 31st of October 2023.

Total amount: Up to €60.000 per approved application.

Applications: No later than 31st of August 2022.

The following projects will not be considered eligible: a) Projects from Clinical or Experimental Models of Human Disease and Therapy; b) Projects whose main scope is eating behaviour, sexual behaviour, physical exercise or fundamental neuroscience.

Learn more!

Prof. Brian Josephson

Cavendish Laboratory, University of Cambridge
Nobel Laureate in Physics

In a talk in his BBC Radio 4 series ‘Think with Pinker’, Steven Pinker asked ‘why do so many of us believe in so much quackery and flapdoodle?’, characterising extrasensory perception as ‘paranormal woowoo’. I can imagine such language slipping out in the course of casual conversation, but on the BBC, in a programme where the text must have been carefully thought out in advance?

Something must have led to this being said in such an uncritical manner, so I thought I’d email Pinker to find out what had led him to speak in this way in regard to the paranormal. In response he came up with two arguments. The first has, at first sight, a degree of plausibility, and is the following: if there really are people with the claimed paranormal abilities, they could use these to win consistently at betting, and we would learn about that. However (as described in a recent Guardian article) it seems this does not happen, because when such people start to win significant sums of money the bookies take note, responding to the threat that they pose by imposing limits on how much they are allowed to bet. As a result, we cannot safely infer that there are no people who can use their paranormal abilities to win large amounts at betting.

The Bigelow Institute for Consciousness Studies

The Bigelow Institute for Consciousness Studies was founded in 2020 to raise awareness of—and encourage research into—the survival of consciousness after death. To that end, the institute ran an essay contest on this topic, throwing down a whopping $1.8M to the 29 winners.

Considering the historic dearth in funding for consciousness and parapsychology research, they certainly have our attention. We should all loudly applaud this rare offering, and look forward to whatever else BICS and founder Robert Bigelow have in store.

Winning first prize, with an award of $500,000, is the essay 'Beyond the Brain: The Survival of Human Consciousness After Permanent Bodily Death', by Dr Jeffrey Mishlove of Thinking Allowed fame. Second prize went to NDE researcher, author, and manifesto signatory Dr Pim van Lommel for his essay 'The Continuity of Consciousness: A concept based on scientific research on near-death experiences during cardiac arrest', for which he received $300,000. And the third place prize of $150,000 went to historian Dr Leo Ruickbie for 'The Ghost in the Time Machine'. Ten others received $50,000 and a further fifeteen $20,000. Winners include noted scientists such as Julie Beischel PhD, Stephen E Braude PhD, Bernardo Kastrup PhD, Dr Peter Fenwick and his team, and many others.

All essays are free to read on the BICS website. If you're at all wondering what evidence there is for the survival of consciousness, a treasure trove awaits you.

"We hope these essays collectively provide a valuable resource for researchers and members of the public for presenting the evidence for survival of human consciousness after bodily death."

The Biofield Research Fellowship Program

For researchers interested in exploring the science of subtle energy and biofield healing, the Biofield Research Fellowship Program is now seeking applications for a new grant/fellowship opportunity, which will provide six annual grants of up to $20,000 USD each, plus mentorship and community for emerging researchers across multiple disciplines.

Backed by a collaborative group of philanthropists and foundations called the Subtle Energy Collective (below), the Biofield Research Fellowship Program is funding rigorous examinations of biofield science with the goal of seeding a new generation of biofield researchers to advance the field and bolster its research base. In addition to grant funds, the Fellowship Program will provide Fellows with a collaborative community of emerging and established researchers and will pair each Fellow with a respected research mentor who has expertise relevant to their research. The findings derived from Fellows’ investigations will provide greater insight into biofield therapies and their applications for reducing suffering and promoting health and wellbeing.


Dr Charles T Tart

Republished with permission from the blog of Charles Tart.

Back when I was a teenager, more than 60 years ago, I became interested in psychical research and parapsychology, including the question of whether we survive physical death in some real fashion. It makes a difference in what you want to do with your life if this physical life is it and then oblivion, versus some kind of continuing existence. Was there scientific evidence indicating we might survive? Useful evidence, even if not finally absolute one way or the other? Probabilities, even if not certainties?

I was not happy with scientism, the faith-based imitation of science already so popular then, a total materialism blindly believed to explain everything. Yes, materialism as a basis had worked very well in studying material matters, but the essence of science is that observation, data, facts, experimental results always have first priority over theory, over belief. So the materialists’ arrogant, cavalier dismissal of any possibility of survival, “It’s impossible,” while not bothering to look at what evidence we had, was an insult to the scientific enterprise.

I have been interested in and investigated many aspects of the mind over my life and career, rather than specializing in any small area. So survival research has been part-time, largely a scholarly activity of mine, keeping up with and interacting with the (sadly) very few researchers who have focused on survival evidence. Recently in discussing the evidence with these more active experts, the idea was raised that it would be helpful if we knew each other more personally. This would be useful not only for the inherent values of friendliness in general, but to see what our personal qualities were that could affect the way we observed and thought about data relevant to survival research. Why did we get interested in this tiny, socially disapproved of field? What sort of conclusions have we reached? How have these understanding affected our personal lives? Some colleagues were particularly interested in why I did not make an unequivocal statement, “We survive death” or “We don’t survive death.” Some of them had made up their minds, but I keep saying that the evidence that we have for survival is good, but it’s complicated, something paranormal is happening, but I’m not sure it means we survive death.

The Matter With Things

Following the paths of cutting-edge neurology, philosophy and physics, The Matter With Things by Iain McGilchrist reveals how each leads us to a similar vision of the world, one that is both profound and beautiful – and happens to be in line with the deepest traditions of human wisdom. Acclaimed for his previous book The Master and his Emissary: The Divided Brain and the Making of the Western World, this new 2-volume book is poised to become “one of the most important books ever published” according to Professor Charles Foster of Oxford University. Louis Sass, Distinguished Professor at Rutgers University calls it “a book of surpassing, even world-historical ambition.”

Coming out November 9th, 2021; those in the UK can order now. In the meantime, check out the author’s discussion with Jordan Peterson below.

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