Beyond Physicalism: Toward Reconciliation of Science and Spirituality, by by Edward Kelly, Adam Crabtree and Paul Marshall (eds.)
From the publisher’s website: The rise of modern science has brought with it increasing acceptance among intellectual elites of a worldview that conflicts sharply both with everyday human experience and with beliefs widely shared among the world’s great cultural traditions. Most contemporary scientists and philosophers believe that reality is at bottom purely physical, and that human beings are nothing more than extremely complicated biological machines. On such views our everyday experiences of conscious decision-making, free will, and the self are illusory by-products of the grinding of our neural machinery. It follows that mind and personality are necessarily extinguished at death, and that there exists no deeper transpersonal or spiritual reality of any sort.
Beyond Physicalism is the product of an unusual fellowship of scientists and humanities scholars who dispute these views. In their previous publication, Irreducible Mind, they argued that physicalism cannot accommodate various well-evidenced empirical phenomena including paranormal or psi phenomena, postmortem survival, and mystical experiences. In this new theory-oriented companion volume they go further by attempting to understand how the world must be constituted in order that these “rogue” phenomena can occur. Drawing upon empirical science, metaphysical philosophy, and the mystical traditions, the authors work toward an improved ‘big picture’ of the general character of reality, one which strongly overlaps territory traditionally occupied by the world’s institutional religions, and which attempts to reconcile science and spirituality by finding a middle path between the polarised fundamentalisms, religious and scientific, that have dominated recent public discourse.
Contributions by: Harald Atmanspacher, Loriliai Biernacki, Bernard Carr, Wolfgang Fach, Michael Grosso, Michael Murphy, David E. Presti, Gregory Shaw, Henry P. Stapp, Eric M. Weiss, and Ian Whicher.
Beyond Physicalism. Rowman & Littlefield, February 2015. ISBN-13: 978-1442232389
Anomalous Cognition: Remote Viewing Research and Theory, by Edwin C. May and Sonali Bhatt Marwaha (eds.)
From the publisher’s website: Anomalous cognition involves the acquisition of information emerging from a distant point in spacetime that is blocked from the usual sensory systems by distance, shielding or time. From 1975 to 1995, Edwin May was a scientist and then programme director for the U.S. government’s psychic espionage program, known as STAR GATE. With the closing of that program, research has continued at the Laboratories for Fundamental Research, in Palo Alto, in the areas of methodology and analysis, neurophysiological studies, personnel assessment and selection, operations research, the physics of anomalous cognition, and psychokinesis.
The conclusions from this 35+ year research effort can be summarized as (1) ESP exists; (2) the gradient of Shannon entropy is the key factor influencing information transfer; (3) because of the innate nature of the ability, the phenomenon so far resists training for excellence (and replication studies will not yield results), and (4) evidence for psychokinesis (PK) is questionable.
This book presents the state-of-the-art, with 26 key papers on research methods, physiological research, decision augmentation theory, entropy, other research, and research challenges.
Edwin C. May is the leading figure in anomalous cognition research, and has authored more than 500 research and technical papers in this area. The former director of the U.S. government psychoenergetics research program STAR GATE at SRI International and SAIC for two decades, he is presently the president of the Laboratories for Fundamental Research in Palo Alto, California. Sonali Bhatt Marwaha is a research associate with the Laboratories for Fundamental Research. Her areas of interest include Indian psychology and the synthesis of the cognitive sciences and anomalous cognition research leading to a theoretical framework. She lives in India.
Anomalous Cognition. McFarland, July 2014. ISBN-13: 978-0786494583
The World's Most Haunted House: The True Story of The Bridgeport Poltergeist on Lindley Street, by William J Hall
From the publisher’s website: In this unprecedented work, the story of the 1974 Bridgeport, Connecticut poltergeist is at last revealed. A crowd of more than 2,000 onlookers gathered. National media reported jumping furniture, floating refrigerators, and attacking entities. Decades after the publicity quieted, more than 40 hours of never-before-released interviews with police officers, firefighters, and others tell the story as it actually unfolded:
Relive the experience, the terror, the rampant emotions, and the unexplainable events that took place in that house as they happened. Have access to revealing excerpts from actual interviews, police reports, and rare documents. Access unreleased audio, poltergeist sounds, and an old radio broadcast.
Return to 1974 and feel the Lindley Street experience from the inside. Find out why it is deemed the haunting that should have brought the paranormal into mainstream science. For more info about the book and author, go to: www.worldsmosthauntedhouse.com
William J. Hall was born and raised in Bridgeport, Connecticut, where the events of this book took place. He watched the news coverage of the Lindley Street haunting on TV when he was 10 years old. Hall is professionally equipped to recognize trickery. After more than 25 years as a performing magician, he knows how to create and recognize illusions. He is experienced in researching the unexplained, from folklore and urban legend to fortune telling, the pyramids, and other mysterious tales. His syndicated 1990’s column ‘Magic and the Unknown’ ran for six years in multiple local papers in his home state. Hall has two sons and resides in Plainville, Connecticut.
The World's Most Haunted House. New Page Books, August 2014. ISBN-13: 978-1601633378
From the publisher’s website: This fascinating work provides a complete overview of paranormal phenomena, including the beliefs, attitudes, and notable figures who have attempted to explain, defend, or debunk the mysteries behind the unknown.
Recent interest in the paranormal as pop culture fodder belies its historical status as an important subject of cultural, philosophical, and scientific significance. This book traces the trajectory of paranormal studies from its early role as a serious academic and scientific topic studied by mainstream scientists and eminent scholars to its current popularity in books, film, and TV.
This compelling reference work details the experiences, encounters, and ideas that make up this controversial field of study. The contributed entries examine the broad phenomena of the paranormal, addressing the history of scientific investigations along with its contemporary media depictions to illustrate the evolution of cultural attitudes about the paranormal. A selection of primary documents provides real-life accounts and contributions from noted experts that explore the full scope of themes from spiritualism to poltergeists to astrology. Accompanying images, timelines, quotations, and sidebars make the content come to life and encourage alternative explanations of these events.
Contains more than 120 factual entries as well as extensive excerpts from several primary documents in the area of the paranormal;
Features contributions from noted experts in its field from across viewpoints —i ncluding believers and sceptics;
Profiles a number of important individuals who have contributed to the history and study of the field;
Includes such topics as near-death experiences, paranormal dreams, the supernatural, magic, and the occult.
Ghosts, Spirits, and Psychics. ABC-CLIO, July 2015. ISBN 978-1-61069-683-8
Medical Pioneers of a Different Kind: Towards a New Paradigm integrating Body, Mind and Spirit, by Carmen Gleadow
From the publisher’s website: In the second half of the twentieth century, a small number of doctors in the United States found themselves, quite independently from one another, undertaking what turned out to be pioneering research on unusual phenomena. The phenomena included claims of having lived before, or reincarnation, out-of-body and near-death experiences (OBEs and NDEs). These phenomena encompassed the three realms that, according to the Ancients, were inherent in human beings: body, mind and spirit. Their research opened up new fields of enquiry in medicine.
The doctors and their original publications are known globally and include: Ian Stevenson, Elisabeth Kübler-Ross, Raymond A. Moody, Bruce Greyson, Michael Sabom, Kenneth Ring and Melvin Morse. What prompted the researchers along the new paths were people’s accounts of a previous life; patients’ reported observations of resuscitation attempts by medical staff; and accounts of having gone some way into ‘the beyond’ while close to death. The researchers’ initial reaction to such reports ranged from surprise to bewilderment, even disbelief. Nevertheless, they listened to patients and started investigating the phenomena. This was no easy task, since their research took them well beyond the comfort zone of classical medical assumptions in which they had trained.
Born in Spain, Carmen Gleadow has lived most of her life in England, where she gained her PhD from King’s College London, University of London.
Medical Pioneers. Parsons Porch, November 2014. ISBN-13: 978-0692335260
Brief Peeks Beyond: Critical Essays on Metaphysics, Neuroscience, Free Will, Skepticism and Culture, by Bernardo Kastrup
From the publisher’s website: This book is a multi-faceted exploration and critique of the human condition as it is presently manifested. It addresses science and philosophy, explores the underlying nature of reality, the state of our society and culture, the influence of the mainstream media, the nature of free will and a number of other topics. Each of these examinations contributes an angle to an emerging idea gestalt that challenges present mainstream views and behaviors and offers a sane alternative. The book is organized as a series of short and self-contained essays, most of which can be read in under one hour.
Bernardo Kastrup has a Ph.D. in computer engineering with specializations in artificial intelligence and reconfigurable computing. He has worked as a scientist in some of the world's foremost research laboratories, including the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) and the Philips Research Laboratories (where the "Casimir Effect" of Quantum Field Theory was discovered). Bernardo has authored many scientific papers and five philosophy books: Rationalist Spirituality, Dreamed up Reality, Meaning in Absurdity, Why Materialism Is Baloney, and Brief Peeks Beyond. He has also been an entrepreneur and founder of a successful high-tech start-up. Next to a managerial position in the high-tech industry, Bernardo maintains a philosophy blog, an audio/video podcast, and continues to develop his ideas about the nature of reality. He has lived and worked in four different countries across continents, currently residing in the Netherlands.
Further information about the book, including the contents list, can be found here:
Brief Peeks Beyond. Iff Books, May 2015. ISBN-13: 978-1785350184
A Search for Meaning in Victorian Religion: The Spiritual Journey and Esoteric Teachings of Charles Carleton Massey, by Jeffrey D. Lavoie
From the publisher’s website: Christian mystic, astrologer, and spiritualist, Charles Carleton Massey (1838–1905) underwent an eclectic spiritual journey that resulted in a series of articles, letters, and booklets that have largely been neglected by modern society. Massey was a child of privilege formally trained as a barrister of law at the Westminster School and the son of the English Minister of Finance for India. He devoted his life to solving the metaphysical mysteries of existence leading him into the world of religious philosophy that placed him in the middle of a crossroads between Victorian science, religion, and philosophy. Beginning his journey as a Spiritualist, Massey continued on a course that brought him into the Theosophical Society, eventually becoming the founding president of its British branch, going through the ranks of the Society of Psychical Research and ultimately into his final role as a Christian mystic.
This indispensable work combines Massey’s collected writings with never before published letters organized topically in order to define Massey’s unique world-view for a new generation of readers. This book covers a range of topics from the “nature of God” to the “microcosm and macrocosm” to “Satanism” and “reincarnation” all the while allowing the reader a rare glimpse into Victorian England and the social and religious issues of this time period. The recollections recorded in this book though written over a hundred years ago, are dealt with in such a simple yet profound way that remain relevant to modern spiritual seekers of all types.
A Search for Meaning in Victorian Religion. Lehigh University Press, November 2014. ISBN-13: 978-1611461848
From the author’s website: Near-death experiences, or NDEs, are controversial. Thousands of people have had them, but many in the scientific community have argued that they are impossible. Dr. Eben Alexander was one of those people. A highly trained neurosurgeon who had operated on thousands of brains in the course of his career, Alexander knew that what people of faith call the “soul” is really a product of brain chemistry. NDEs, he would have been the first to explain, might feel real to the people having them, but in truth they are simply fantasies produced by brains under extreme stress. Then came the day when Dr. Alexander’s own brain was attacked by an extremely rare illness. The part of the brain that controls thought and emotion – and in essence makes us human – shut down completely. For seven days Alexander lay in a hospital bed in a deep coma. Then, as his doctors weighed the possibility of stopping treatment, Alexander’s eyes popped open. He had come back.
Alexander’s recovery is by all accounts a medical miracle. But the real miracle of his story lies elsewhere. While his body lay in coma, Alexander journeyed beyond this world and encountered an angelic being who guided him into the deepest realms of super-physical existence. There he met, and spoke with, the Divine source of the universe itself. This story sounds like the wild and wonderful imaginings of a skilled fantasy writer. But it is not fantasy. Before Alexander underwent his journey, he could not reconcile his knowledge of neuroscience with any belief in heaven, God, or the soul. That difficulty with belief created an empty space that no professional triumph could erase. Today he is a doctor who believes that true health can be achieved only when we realize that God and the soul are real and that death is not the end of personal existence but only a transition. This story would be remarkable no matter who it happened to. That it happened to Dr. Alexander makes it revolutionary. No scientist or person of faith will be able to ignore it. Reading it will change your life.
Proof of Heaven. Piatkus, October 2012. ISBN-13: 978-0749958794
From the publisher’s website: ‘Psi’ is the term used by researchers for a variety of demonstrable but elusive psychic phenomena. This collection of essays provides a detailed survey of the evidence for psi at the level of scientific examination.
Key features of apparent psi phenomena are reviewed, including precognition and remote perception (knowledge of future or distant events that cannot be inferred from present information), presentiment (physiological responses to stimuli that have not yet occurred), the effects of human emotions on globally dispersed machines, the possible impact of local sidereal time on psi performance, and the familiar feeling of knowing who is calling on the phone.
Special attention is given to those phenomena that make it difficult for scientists to get a clear understanding of psi. The body of psi research, while complex and frustrating, is shown to contain sufficiently compelling positive evidence to convince the rational open-minded observer that psi is real, and that one or more physical processes probably underlie observed psi phenomena.
Evidence for Psi. McFarland, November 2014. ISBN-13: 978-0786478286
The Immortal Mind: Science and the Continuity of Consciousness Beyond the Brain, by Ervin Laszlo with Anthony Peake
From the publisher’s website: Scientific evidence for the continual presence of consciousness with or without connection to a living organism
• Examines findings on the survival of consciousness beyond life, including near-death experiences, after-death communication, and reincarnation
• Explains how this correlates precisely with cutting-edge physics theories on superstrings, information fields, and energy matrices
• Reveals how consciousness manifests in living beings to continue its evolution
Evidence now points to consciousness existing beyond the brain, such as when the brain is temporarily incapacitated, as well as to the survival of consciousness after death. Conventional science prefers to dismiss these findings because they cannot be accommodated by a materialist view of reality. Spirituality and religion embrace the continuity of consciousness and ascribe it to a nonmaterial spirit or soul that is immortal. As such, spirituality/religion and science continually find conflict in their views. But what if there truly is no conflict?
Based on a new scientific paradigm in sync with experience-based spirituality, Ervin Laszlo and Anthony Peake explore how consciousness is continually present in the cosmos and can exist without connection to a living organism. They examine the rapidly growing body of scientific evidence supporting the continuity of consciousness, including near-death experiences, after-death communication, reincarnation, and neurosensory information received in altered states. They explain how the persistence of consciousness beyond the demise of the body means that, in essence, we are not mortal--we continue to exist even when our physical existence has come to an end. This correlates precisely with cutting-edge physics, which posits that things in our plane of time and space are not intrinsically real but are manifestations of a hidden dimension where they exist in the form of superstrings, information fields, and energy matrices.
With proof that consciousness is basic to the cosmos and immortal in its deeper, nonmanifest realm, Laszlo and Peake reveal the purpose of consciousness is to manifest in living beings in order to continuously evolve.
The Immortal Mind. Inner Traditions, November 2014. ISBN-13: 978-1620553039
From the publisher: The idea that we live more than one life on Earth has been taught since philosophy and theology were invented. But not everyone accepts it. There are secular critics who find the idea unscientific, religious critics who feel it violates their unassailable doctrines, and just plain critics who attack it on pragmatic grounds. Not only does the author of this book demonstrate the faults in such criticisms, he presents conclusive evidence that reincarnation is a reality, at least for some of us, some of the time.
Defending Bridey's Honor. CreateSpace, June 2013. ISBN-13: 978-1490312101
ESP Wars East and West: An Account of the Military Use of Psychic Espionage As Narrated by the Key Russian and American Players, by Edwin C. May, Victor Rubel, and Loyd Auerbach
From the authors’ blurb: Was there really a government-sanctioned psychic programme in the US? What were their goals? Were they successful? Were there fights in Congress about the programme? Did our Military support it fully? Was the US programme set up in response to a Soviet programme? Did the Soviet Union actually create psychic (psychotronic) weapons and generators? What was the involvement of the KGB? Have psychics had any influence over politics and decisions in the US? In the Soviet Union? In Russia? Has Russia continued with psychic espionage even as the US shut down its programme? Has there been a psychic arms race…a series of ESP Wars?
Read the real stories of the American and Soviet/Russian ESP programmes and how ESP was used in intelligence gathering and other applications. Learn the greater story of why these major powers saw fit to put stock in something so many academics dismiss out of turn and what practical value was found for Military and Intelligence operations. Delve into the politics that led to, supported, and eventually shut down the psychic espionage programmes – and why the US programme, at least, has not been resurrected in light of the events of the first decade of the 21st century.
With commentary and insights from the former US programme director (Edwin C. May), the Army’s remote viewing agent 001 (Joe McMoneagle) and several Russian military/former KGB officers and experts, ESP WARS gives you an insiders’ view of what really went on, how it happened, and why. This book will be of interest to anyone interested in ESP (especially Remote Viewing), as well as how ESP has been successfully applied in missions of last resort for the Defence Department, CIA and other agencies. The book will especially be of interest to those looking for material on the politics and funding of classified projects, as well as the people participating in them, supporting them, and those with an axe to grind.
The Russian (and Soviet) sources present readers with a narrative of the place of psychic abilities in their society and politics, how the KGB was (and was not) involved, how psychics were brought into political decisions and even how psychics ended up in tanks on the front lines in the war in Chechnya. Those interested in international politics will find much to chew on here as well, especially insight into what went on during a number of difficult political situations at the end of the reign of the Soviet Union. Also of great interest is the perspective (and experiences) of our high-ranking Russian sources with regards to the KGB. For a story that transcends merely dealing with the “psychic” in “psychic spying,” for a narrative of politics and classified projects, ESP WARS will hold your attention from start to finish. As a bit of a tease at the end is an appendix with declassified material from the US Star Gate Programme.
ESP Wars. CreateSpace, August 2014. ISBN-13: 978-1500743000
Contagion: In the Shadow of the South Shields Poltergeist, by Darren W. Ritson and Michael J. Hallowell
From the publisher’s website: Almost ten years on after the famous South Shields Poltergeist case of 2006, and its disturbing book of 2008, Darren W. Ritson and Michael J. Hallowell bring you Contagion, a fascinating and ground-breaking new study of the world of poltergeist activity. After researching a number of different and bewildering poltergeist cases, post-South Shields, the authors have come to some startling conclusions and raise some serious thought-provoking hypotheses regarding the aspect of poltergeistry known as 'contagion'.
Contagion is one of many facets of the poltergeist phenomenon and, if it so desires, can touch all those that choose to investigate it – no one is safe. During the years subsequent to the South Shields case, both authors were subjected to poltergeist 'contagion' which, after studying these events and further cases, led them to conclude that they may not have been as free of the South Shields entity as they had previously – and somewhat naively – thought. This book was originally completed and ready for publication in 2009, but due to unforeseen circumstances and situations out of the authors' hands, they decided to wait until now to release these new accounts, along with hitherto unpublished material and photographs pertaining to the 2006 case. With a foreword by the late Colin Wilson (1931-2013) this book promises to be one of the most controversial paranormal publications of recent years and create some serious debate about the nature of the poltergeist phenomenon.
Darren W. Ritson has written almost twenty books on ghosts and hauntings and has been a member of the Society for Psychical Research (SPR) since 2006. Darren has travelled the country lecturing on the poltergeist phenomenon and has been invited to conduct talks with some of the leading academic research associations into psychic study such as the SPR, the Ghost Club of Great Britain and the Scottish Society for Psychical Research. Darren has also lectured at Northumbria University after receiving invites from Dr Nick Neave (Head of Psychology/Parapsychology).
Michael J. Hallowell is the author of over a dozen books on the subject of paranormal phenomena. He is a freelance journalist and broadcaster and lectures widely on subjects such as the supernatural and comparative religion. In 2011, long after completing the manuscript for Contagion with his co-author Darren W. Ritson, he began to study the history of the Jinn phenomenon and as a result converted to Islam. He is now a practising Muslim and is currently working on a number of books, including an in-depth study of the crucifixion from an Islamic viewpoint.
Contagion. Limbury Press, July 2014. ISBN: 978-0956522894
From the Spiritualists’ National Union website: This illustrated booklet traces the history of this remarkable phase of physical phenomena, firstly introduced in America around the mid-1870s by Professor W. Denton. Spirit Wax Moulds are one of the most definitive pieces of evidences of physical séance room phenomena and the Britten Memorial Museum is fortunate to hold some of these rare moulds. In the early 1920s Dr. Gustave Geley re-introduced the production of wax moulds with the remarkable Polish medium Franek Kluski. The booklet concludes with a summary of discussions in the Journal of the Society for Psychical Research by modern day psychical researchers.
The booklet is available from the SNU online shop: http://www.shop.snu.org.uk/new.html
Spirit Wax Moulds. The Arthur Findlay College, March 2012. 23pp. £3.99.
From the publisher’s website: This book contains 12 accounts of personal experiences from the world beyond. They come from deceased human beings who transmitted their individual story through the deep trance medium Beatrice Brunner during the years 1961 to 1969. In a vivid manner they describe their initial experiences and encounters in the next world. These reports are impressive testimonies of the continuation of life after death.
Hereafter. ABZ Verlag, 2013. ISBN: 978-3-85516-011-2