Books on Consciousness Studies
Neuromania, Darwinitis and the Misrepresentation of Humanity
By Raymond Tallis
Tallis is a neuroscientist who is appalled by the exaggerated claims made for the ability of neuroscience and evolutionary theory to explain human consciousness and behavior. He offers a powerful critique of the materialist theory that we are our brains. Tallis does not write from a religious point of view, but as a secular humanist.
"A terrific book, though readers must be prepared to read it at least twice, not because it is in any sense obscure, but fully to appreciate the richness and subtlety of Tallis's novel insights, with all their implications for our understanding of humanity's precious attributes of freedom, intentionality and moral responsibility."
- James Le Fanu, The Tablet
"A trenchant, lucid and witty attack on the reductive materialism of many scientific accounts of consciousness - not from a religious point of view, but that of an atheist humanist with a distinguished record in medicine and neuroscience."
- David Lodge, The Guardian's Books of the Year 2011
"Neuroscience, we are implausibly informed by white-coated Simon Baron-Cohen, will help dispense with evil. Who better to debunk its pretensions while instructing us in its uses than wise, literate Raymond Tallis, a neuroscientist himself, in his entertaining Aping Mankind."
- George Walden, Evening Standard's Best Books of the Year
By Mary Midgley
The distinguished British philosopher deconstructs the fashionable materialist idea that our sense of self is an illusion. The denial of the self has been sustained by the belief that the physical sciences require it. Midgley traces the historical roots of this misconception, and shows how our own experiences are just as necessary for understanding of ourselves and the world as the study of brains.
"It is a very big little book. Midgley manages in just 150 pages to say more than most scholars manage in a lifetime. ... Midgley combines both the ability to place intellectual fashions in their broader context with having lived long enough to personally witness the rise and fall of many of them. ...in this bite-size book she digests some of the toughest intellectual challenges of our day."
- Stephen Cave, Financial Times
By Mario Beauregard
In Brain Wars, acclaimed neuroscientist Mario Beauregard reveals compelling new evidence set to provoke a major shift in our understanding of the mind-body debate: research showing that the mind and consciousness are transmitted and filtered through the brain--but are not generated by it.
"Brain Wars explains why the prevailing brain-mind paradigm is falling apart and why we are increasingly being forced to reconsider the nature of consciousness. The consequences of this paradigm shift are profound, and Mario Beauregard does a magnificent job in explaining why."
- Dean Radin PhD Co-Editor-in-Chief, Explore, Senior Scientist Institute of Noetic Sciences
"Mario Beauregard shows convincingly that the materialistic philosophy of the 19th century is an impoverished framework incompatible with contemporary science, from physics to psychology. The concepts he develops in Brain Wars are required reading for scientific literacy in today's world."
- Bruce Greyson, M.D. Research psychiatrist, University of Virginia
"Dr. Beauregard describes that our mind/consciousness has a fundamental and irreducible nature, and that it sometimes can be experienced independently from the body because it is not limited to our brain. Brain Wars clearly announces the end of physicalism, reductionism, materialism and objectivism in science."
- Pim van Lommel, cardiologist, author of Consciousness beyond Life
By Rupert Sheldrake
Many people who have owned a pet will swear that their dog or cat or other animal has exhibited some kind of behavior they just can't explain. How does a dog know when its owner is returning home at an unexpected time? How do cats know when it is time to go to the vet, even before the cat carrier comes out? How do horses find their way back to the stable over completely unfamiliar terrain? And how can some pets predict that their owners are about to have an epileptic fit?
These intriguing questions about animal behavior convinced world-renowned biologist Rupert Sheldrake that the very animals who are closest to us have much to teach us about biology, nature, and consciousness.
With a scientist's mind and an animal lover's compassion, Sheldrake compellingly demonstrates that we and our pets are social animals linked together by invisible bonds connecting animals to each other, to their owners, and to their homes in powerful ways. Sheldrake's provocative ideas about these social, or morphic, fields explain the uncanny behavior often observed in pets and help provide an explanation for amazing animal behavior in the wild, such as migration and homing.
"Delightful . . . this book will turn our understanding of animals inside out."
— Jeffrey Moussaieff Masson, author of When Elephants Weep
"Wonderful . . . splendid and thought-provoking."
— Elizabeth Marshall Thomas, author of The Hidden Life of Dogs
Excerpts From the Book
Appendix from the Second Edition
Controversies with skeptics about the unexplained powers of animals.
By Alexander Moreira-Almeida, MD, PhD and
Franklin Santana Santos, MD, PhD (Eds.)
This thought-provoking volume argues against the purely physical analysis of consciousness and for a balanced psychobiological approach. It bridges philosophy of mind with science of mind to examine transcendent phenomena empirically, such as mystic states, near-death experiences and past-life memories, that have confounded scientists for decades. Representing disciplines ranging from philosophy and history to neuroimaging and physics, and boasting a panel of expert scientists and physicians, including Andrew Newberg, Peter Fenwick, Stuart Hameroff, Mario Beauregard, Deepak Chopra, and Chris Clarke the book rigorously follows several lines of inquiry into mind-brain controversies, challenging readers to form their own conclusions--or reconsider previous ones.
"Exploring Frontiers of the Mind-Brain Relationship is an important contribution. It provides a balance of the purely physical analyses of consciousness with the psychobiological. In this way, it attempts to bridge mind philosophy with science. It empirically examines transcendent phenomena, such as mystical altered states, near-death experiences, end-of-life, mediumistic experiences, and past-life memories. Consequently, this book's 12 chapters confront the hard scientific dilemmas, and its cast of scientists should be commended."
- Vernon M. Neppe, Pacific Neuropsychiatric Institute, Journal of Parapsychology Vol. 77, no. 1., Spring 2013
"Although dogmatic materialism is the monarch of contemporary Western philosophy and science, contributors to this splendid book remind me of the brash lad in the classic fable who shouted, "But the emperor has no clothes!" Some readers will agree with this observation while others will find it an outrageous heresy. But as they wend their way through each articulately stated and meticulously argued chapter, they will never succumb to boredom. It is the type of book that will haunt its readers long after the last chapter is read."
- Stanley Krippner, Ph.D., Professor of Psychology, Saybrook University
Would you like to know what we have learned about ESP, how it works, and what it is for? First Sight presents an original, highly integrative theory that normalizes psi by placing it in the context of other non-conscious cognitive processes studied by mainstream scientists. The theory is supported by the literature of experimental parapsychology, and grounded in the latest findings in experimental cognitive psychology, neuropsychology and social/personality/clinical psychology. Readers find the approach at once mind-bending and, once digested, curiously obvious. One basic assumption is that psi is not a scattering of dubious, unpredictable anomalous experiences -- it is an ongoing unconscious process that stands behind every thought and action. Hence, psi is not "second sight," it is "first sight."
"Overall, the theory constitutes a transformational contribution to both psi research and the psychology of consciousness."
- Daryl Bem, PhD, Professor Emeritus, Cornell University
"(It is) an intellectual tour de force that deserves a place in the pantheon of groundbreaking scientific works."
- John Ballard, PhD, Mount St. Joseph University
"Beyond the sixth sense and before second sight there simmers a more fundamental First Sight. In this radical reframing of the meaning and mechanisms of psychic phenomena, James Carpenter proposes that where the edges of mind and matter meet all distinctions between inner and outer, subjectivity and objectivity, disappear. . . . A refreshingly novel approach to understanding psychic phenomena."
- Dean Radin, PhD, Senior Scientist, Institute of Noetic Sciences
"In this engaging and beautifully crafted book Jim Carpenter shows in remarkable depth and detail how situating the paranormal in the context of other preconscious receptive and expressive processes allows us to understand a host of existing findings in a way that makes excellent psychological sense - a significant theoretical achievement that should command the attention of parapsychologists and mainstream psychologists alike."
- Edward F. Kelly, PhD Department of Psychiatry and Neurobehavioral Sciences, University of Virginia
"I think it is a masterpiece -- and probably represents the most sophisticated psychological analysis of psi phenomena since F.W.H. Myers' classic over a hundred years ago."
- Jeffrey Mishlove, PhD, Host, Thinking Allowed television series.
By Larry Dossey, MD
Dossey shows how Western cultures have become obsessed with the importance of individuality and self, to the neglect of the unity, connectedness, and interdependence of all of life. The result has been a pandemic of selfish and greed. Using a variety of examples of human and animal experience -- creativity, group behaviors, dreams, near-death experiences, shared physical and emotional phenomena, and more -- Dossey paints a picture of consciousness as nonlocal -- consciousness unconfined to specific points in space and time, therefore unitary, eternal, and one.
"Larry Dossey is a pioneer who keeps finding new frontiers. With One Mind, his merging of science and wisdom has come full circle, as Dossey makes the case for ancient spiritual teachings about the one and the many. I'm happy to embrace Larry as a kindred spirit."
- Deepak Chopra, author of Spiritual Solutions
"Dr. Larry Dossey's excellent book One Mind lays the groundwork for the coming global awakening of consciousness and helps map out the path toward it. Dr. Dossey makes an eloquent case that such consciousness is, indeed, One Consciousness. His is the science of 2012 and beyond"
- Eben Alexander, M.D., author of Proof of Heaven: A Neurosurgeon's Journey into the Afterlife
"Larry Dossey is not arguing simply for the existence of psychic phenomena, for which there is now much evidence, but for a deeper linkage we all share to One Mind which underlies our seemingly separate individual minds. This book combines a thought-provoking thesis with remarkable and vivid accounts of personal experiences. Only Larry Dossey could carry this off."
- Rupert Sheldrake, Ph.D., author of Science Set Free: 10 Paths to New Discovery
By Stephan A. Schwartz
Schwartz, an anthropologist, explorer, and consciousness researcher, shows the relationship of nonlocal awareness to spiritual practice, creativity, and the modern mental art known as Remote Viewing, a field in which Schwartz is a pioneer. The book is an exploration of the infinite reaches of the mind, and how scientifically validated protocols can be used to explore these dimension of human experience. Opening to the Infinite is highly practical; it discusses ways one can put these abilities to everyday use in fields as diverse as business, medicine, and crime-solving.
Edited by Etzel Cardeña, John Palmer and David Marcusson-Clavertz
This is the first book in more than 40 years to provide a comprehensive scientific overview of research in the field of parapsychology, explaining what we know and don't know about so-called psi phenomena, such as telepathy, precognition or psychokinesis. Contributors evaluate the evidence for these phenomena, accounting for factors such as selective memory, wish fulfillment and incorrect methods or analyses, in some cases offering psychological, physical and biological theories.
31 chapters by 37 experts
» Part 1. Basic concepts
1. An overview of modern development in parapsychology / Nancy L. Zingrone, Carlos S. Alvarado and Gerd H. Hövelmann
2. Parapsychology in context: the big picture / Edward F. Kelly
3. The case against psi / Douglas M. Stokes
» Part 2. Research methods and statistical approaches
4. Experimental methods in anomalous cognition and anomalous perturbation research / John Palmer
5. Research methods with spontaneous case studies / Emily Williams Kelly and Jim B. Tucker
6. Macro-psychokinesis: methodological concerns / Graham Watkins
7. Statistical guidelines for empirical studies / Patrizio E. Tressoldi and Jessica Utts
» Part 3. Psychology and psi
8. Psychological concepts of psi function: a review and constructive critique / Rex G. Stanford
9. States, traits, cognitive variables and psi / Etzel Cardeña and David Marcusson-Clavertz
10. Ariadne's thread: meditation and psi / Serena M. Roney-Dougal
» Part 4. Biology and psi
11. Psi and biology: an evolutionary perspective / Richard S. Broughton
12. Drugs and psi phenomena / David Luke
» Part 5. Physics and psi
13. Quantum theory and parapsychology / Brian Millar
14. Physical correlates of psi / Adrian Ryan
» Part 6. Psi phenomena: anomalous cognition, perturbation and force
15. Explicit anomalous cognition: a review of the best evidence in ganzfeld, forced choice, remote viewing and dream studies / Johann Baptista, Max Derakhshani and Patrizio E. Tressoldi
16. Implicit anomalous cognition / John Palmer
17. Psi and psychophysiology / Dean Radin and Alan Pierce
18. Experimental research on distant intention phenomena / Stefan Schmidt
19. Macro-psychokinesis / Stephen E. Braude
20. Micro-psychokinesis / Mario Varvoglis and Peter A. Bancel
21. Implicit physical psi: the Global Consciousness Project / Roger D. Nelson
22. Experimenter effect in parapsychology research / John Palmer and Brian Millar
» Part 7. Psi phenomena: research on survival
23. Mental mediumship / Julie Beischel and Nancy L. Zingrone
24. Reincarnation: field studies and theoretical issues today / Antonia Mills and Jim B. Tucker
25. Ghosts and poltergeists: an eternal enigma / Michaeleen Maher
26. Electronic voice phenomena / Mark R. Leary and Tom Butler
» Part 8. Practical applications
27. Psi in everyday life: nonhuman and human / Rupert Sheldrake
28. Exceptional experiences (ExE) in clinical psychology / Martina Belz and Wolfgang Fach
29. Applied psi / Paul H. Smith and Garrett Moddel
» Part 9. To sum it up
30. On the usefulness of parapsychology for science at large / Gerd H. Hövelmann
31. On negative capability and parapsychology: personal reflections / Etzel Cardeña.
By Chris Carter
Reports of psychic abilities such as telepathy, clairvoyance, precognition, and psychokinesis date back to the beginning of recorded human history in all cultures. Carter shows that replicable evidence of psi phenomena exists. The controversy over parapsychology continues not because ESP and other abilities cannot be verified but because their existence challenges deeply held worldviews. Carter reveals how the doctrine of materialism -- in which nothing matters but matter -- has become an article of faith for many scientists and philosophers, much like the convictions of religious fundamentalists. By outlining the origin of this passionate debate, Carter calls on all open-minded individuals to reach their own conclusions by looking at the vast body of evidence.
"Chris Carter is a one-man wrecking crew for the time-worn, tedious, petulant, and often flimsy complaints of the die-hard skeptics. A science of consciousness is doomed to be incomplete without taking Carter's keen insights into account."
- Larry Dossey, M.D., author of Healing Words and The Power of Premonitions
"The controversy surrounding psychic phenomena (psi) is both long and complicated. Chris Carter reviews the many elements of the controversy in great detail, but in a manner that is also readable and entertaining--a difficult feat. I found his explanation of quantum theories of psi, for example, exceptionally clear, and it resolved some confusion I had about these theories from reading other sources. Carter adheres strictly to valid scientific and philosophical principles in arguing for the reality of psi and the legitimacy of parapsychology as a science--no retreat into New Age metaphysical mumbo jumbo--and he doesn't overstate his case. Any reader who can approach this controversial subject with an open mind will find Carter's book immensely rewarding."
- John Palmer, Ph.D., editor of Journal of Parapsychology
"I highly recommend this book to anyone who is truly open-minded about whether or not psychic abilities exist. Chris Carter takes the reader on an insightful journey that weaves together history, scientific data, modern physics, psychology, and philosophy of science. He convincingly shows that it's now possible to replace belief-based opinion with solid science when discussing the possible reality of psychic phenomena."
- Jessica Utts, Ph.D., professor of statistics, University of California, Davis
By Dean Radin
Dean Radin, one of the world's leading experimental parapsychologists, explores whether yoga and meditation can increase our inherent mental powers, and summarizes experimental evidence for telepathy, clairvoyance and precognition.
"In Supernormal, consciousness researcher Dr. Dean Radin shows compellingly that specific ancient claims about extraordinary psychic abilities are real, and how they have been confirmed by an outpouring of ingenious experiments whose statistical power is simply galactic. Supernormal is the crown jewel in Dr. Radin's landmark trilogy, which also includes The Conscious Universe and Entangled Minds. Supernormal is a reader's delight. Beautifully written, it is spiced with that rarest ingredient in science writing: humor. If this book does not take your breath away, it should, because it reveals how we can awaken to innate human potentials that are glorious, on which our future may depend. Thank you, Dr. Radin, for showing the way."
- Larry Dossey, MD, author of One Mind
"In the last 50 years, major discoveries in modern science increasingly support the wisdom and vision of the ancient philosophers and sages. Dean Radin's work is a major step in the same context, showing us how the statements made by the ancient sages like Patanjali are supported by the current research conducted with strictest scientific protocols. Radin's work seems to bear even greater promise of what is yet to come."
- Swami Veda Bharati, D. Lit.
"As with Dr. Radin's previous work, this book is thoroughly researched, clearly written, and immensely engaging. Once again he has pushed the boundaries of religion, science, psychology, and philosophy. Invaluable reading!"
- Michael Bloch, University of San Francisco
By Larry Dossey, MD
Reports of future knowing have been part of human history since time immemorial. They manifest in all shamanic traditions, as biblical prophecy, and as folk wisdom in all cultures. Even today, the vast majority of individuals say they have experienced premonitions, even though these experiences are dismissed by skeptics as "mere coincidence." Dossey links these experiences with a variety of modern experiments that confirm our ability to know something before it happens. He proposes biological reasons why this ability is widespread: it provides a survival advantage to those possessing it. Dossey shows how developments in modern physics do not prohibit premonitions, but permits them.
"The long-awaited seminal book on this topic. A crowning achievement."
- Marc Ian Barasch, author of Healing Dreams
"Larry Dossey, one of our greatest medical sages and admitted informavore, takes us on a wonderful journey from non-local mind and consciousness to the power of understanding our abilities to have not only intuitive thoughts, but premonitions. Read it to feel fully awakened to a deeper understanding of your mind and a greater connection to the universal consciousness."
- Woodson Merrell, MD, Chairman Department of Integrative Medicine, Beth Israel Medical Center, NYC
"For anyone who is interested in knowing about the deeper meaning of our existence, this book is a must read. Once again, Larry, being the pioneer that he is, has written a classic."
- Deepak Chopra, MD, Jesus: A Story of Enlightenment
By Rupert Sheldrake, PhD
Book of the Year Award
Scientific and Medical Network
"Thirty years after his first heretical books, Sheldrake's new one, Science Set Free, is a landmark achievement. No science writing has inspired me more."
— Deepak Chopra, San Francisco Chronicle, read review
"Sheldrake drags ten of the most powerful dogmas out of the basement and into the light of day; and does science, humanity and the world a large, a considerable favour."
— The Independent, read review
"For those of us who are suspicious of the claims of materialism it's astonishing, and also heartening, to hear a scientist agree that it's a hidebound ideology, dismiss the belief in determinism as a 'delusion' and call on the 'high priests' of science to abandon their 'fantasy of omniscience'."
— Robert McLuhan, read review
Rupert Introduces the US Edition
By Rupert Sheldrake, PhD
In this newly updated edition, Sheldrake shares his more than 25 years of research into telepathy, the power of staring, remote viewing, precognition, and animal premonitions. Drawing on more than 5,000 case histories, 4,000 questionnaire responses, and the results of experiments on staring, thought transference, phone telepathy, and other phenomena carried out with more than 20,000 people as well as reports and data from dozens of independent research teams, Sheldrake shows that these unexplained human abilities such as the sense of being stared at are not paranormal but normal, part of our biological nature. He reveals that telepathy depends on social bonds and traces its evolution from the connections between members of animal groups such as flocks, schools, and packs. Sheldrake shows that our minds and intentions extend beyond our brains into our surroundings with invisible connections that link us to each other, to the world around us, and even to the future.
"Important, thought-provoking, and exciting. Sheldrake's combination of good science with an open mind and his willingness to dig deeply where others fear to tread makes for a fascinating, un-put-downable read."
— Graham Hancock, author of Supernatural
"... will change forever your concept of the nature of consciousness, not just in humans but in other creatures as well. It expands the reach of perception beyond the physical senses and beyond the constraints of space and time. What emerges is a new vision of human potential based not in fantasy but in cutting-edge science. This will prove to be one of the most important books of the 21st century."
— Larry Dossey, M.D., author of One Mind: How Our Individual Mind Is Part of a Greater Consciousness and Why It Matters
"Sheldrake's genius lies in his taking well-attested anecdotal phenomena like telepathy, the sense of being stared at, and anticipating alarm calls and putting them to the scientific test. In doing so his work not only extends indeed stretches the mind, it also extends science in a new and creative direction."
— David Lorimer, program director for the Scientific and Medical Network and author of The Spirit of Science
By Michael A Jawer with Marc S Micozzi, MD, PhD
A cutting-edge examination of feelings, not thoughts, as the gateway to understanding consciousness
• Contends that emotion is the greatest influence on personality development
• Offers a new perspective on immunity, stress, and psychosomatic conditions
• Explains how emotion is key to understanding out-of-body experience, apparitions, and other anomalous perceptions
Contemporary science holds that the brain rules the body and generates all our feelings and perceptions. Michael Jawer and Dr. Marc Micozzi disagree. They contend that it is our feelings that underlie our conscious selves and determine what we think and how we conduct our lives.
The less consciousness we have of our emotional being, the more physical disturbances we are likely to have--from ailments such as migraines, fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue, and post-traumatic stress to anomalous perceptions such as apparitions and involuntary out-of-body experiences. Using the latest scientific research on immunity, sensation, stress, cognition, and emotional expression, the authors demonstrate that the way we process our feelings provides a key to who is most likely to experience these phenomena and why. They explain that emotion is a portal into the world of extraordinary perception, and they provide the studies that validate the science behind telepathic dreams, poltergeists, and ESP. The Spiritual Anatomy of Emotion challenges the prevailing belief that the brain must necessarily rule the body. Far from being by-products of neurochemistry, the authors show that emotions are the key vehicle by which we can understand ourselves and our interactions with the world around us as well as our most intriguing--and perennially baffling--experiences.
"An insightful exploration of the powerful capacities of the mind-body connection, and its inherent link with perception."
- Andrew Weil
"The Spiritual Anatomy of Emotion is brilliant . . . comprehensive . . . holistic."
"The Spiritual Anatomy of Emotion is a landmark book that presents a picture of consciousness that is far more majestic than anything conceived in conventional neuroscience. Based in solid science, this bold effort will challenge anyone who reads it with an open mind. Highly recommended."
- Larry Dossey
"Jawer and Micozzi articulate one of the most profound understandings of consciousness since Descartes. The book brings Antonio Damasio's 'feeling brain' into full embodiment. It is a monumental contribution to understanding ourselves as human beings."
- Allan Combs
"Truly unique in bridging disciplines...This is a book for the 21st century that will open and enlarge our minds, hearts, and spirits."
- Miriam Greenspan
By Mario Beauregard and Denyse O'Leary
In this book, neuroscientist Beauregard and journalist O'Leary mount a sweeping critique of a trend in the pop science media to explain away spiritual experiences as a brain artifact, pathology or evolutionary quirk. Beauregard and O'Leary also offer compelling evidence that these experiences have a nonmaterial origin.
"A very important book, clearly explaining non-materialist neuroscience in simple terms appropriate for the lay reader."
- Jeffrey M. Schwartz, MD, Research Psychiatrist, UCLA
"The Spiritual Brain is a wonderful and important book...a necessary read for both the scientist and the religious person."
- Andrew Newberg, M.D. Associate Professor of Radiology and Director of the Center for Spirituality and the Mind at the University of Pennsylvania
"A refreshing antidote to the arguments offered by some scientists who insist that their minds, and yours, are meaningless illusions."
- Dean Radin, PhD, Senior Scientist, Institute of Noetic Sciences