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Comments on Steven Pinker’s view of the Paranormal

Brian Josephson, PhD; Nobel Prize (physics); Professor Emeritus of Physics, Cambridge University; Director of the Mind-Matter Unification Project of the Theory of Condensed Matter Group at the Cavendish Laboratory.

Why I’ve Studied the Survival of Death: Conclusions

Charles T. Tart, PhD; co-founder of the field of transpersonal psychology; Professor Emeritus of Psychology, University of Californi; and currently Core Faculty at Sofia University.

Consciousness: Why Materialism Fails

Larry Dossey, MD; Executive Editor, Explore: The Journal of Science and Healing, former Chief of Staff of Medical City Dallas Hospital, author of 13 books and hundreds of articles.

The Replicability Crisis in Science

Rupert Sheldrake, PhD; biologist and author of A New Science of Life & The Science Delusion; Director of the Perrott-Warrick project, 2005-2010, Trinity College, Cambridge.

Does the Brain Produce the Mind? A Survey of Psychiatrists’ Opinions

Alexander Moreira-Almeida, MD, PhD; Associate Professor of Psychiatry at the Federal University of Juiz de Fora (UFJF) School of Medicine, and Founder and Director of NUPES the Research Center in Spirituality and Health.

Who's Who in Open Science

Recent Additions

Àlex Gómez-Marín

PhD; Associate Professor, Instituto de Neurociencias (CSIC-UMH) Alicante, Spain; Director, Pari Center, Italy

"Ask not only what science can do for consciousness but also what consciousness can do for science."

Recommended Resources

Galileo Commission Report cover

The Galileo Commission

A comprehensive report on the impact of materialism by Harald Walach with input from ninety advisers at thirty universities; a project of the Scientific and Medical Network.

Full Report Layman's Guide

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

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Waking Cosmos Podcast

Waking Cosmos
with Adrian David Nelson

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

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

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Navigating Consciousness
with Rupert Sheldrake

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


This essay by Ashish Dalela was written in response to the call for essays by the Royal Institute of Philosophy for their yearly essay contest. For those concerned with post-materialist science, it's a worthy read.

Abstract

An assumption implicit in this question is that non-living objects probably don’t present a problem for materialism, because if that weren’t the case, we would be asking if materialism is a sound approach for all of science and not just the study of living forms. In this essay I will argue that: (1) the problem of materialism is not unique to living forms, but exists even for non-living things, and (2) the problem originates not in materialism per se but from reductionism which reduces big things (or wholes) to small things (or parts). Reduction has been practiced in all areas of science – physics, mathematics, and computing, apart from biology – and it makes all scientific theories either inconsistent or incomplete. This is a fundamental issue and cannot be overcome, unless our approach to reduction is inverted: rather than reduce big things to small things, we must now reduce the small things to big things. This new kind of reduction can be attained if both big and small were described as ideas: the big is now an abstract concept while the small is a contingent concept, and contingent concepts are produced from abstract concepts by adding information. This leads us to a view of nature in which objects are also ideas – just more detailed than the abstractions in the mind; the abstract ideas precede the detailed ideas. When the reduction is inverted, a new kind of materialism emerges which is free from its current problems. This materialism presents a new theory of inanimate matter, not just living forms.

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