A distinguished anthropologist–who is also an initiated shaman–reveals the long-hidden female roots of the world’s oldest form of religion and medicine. Here is a fascinating expedition into this ancient tradition, from its prehistoric beginnings to the work of women shamans across the globe today.
States of Consciousness
Current mainstream opinion in psychology, neuroscience, and philosophy of mind holds that all aspects of human mind and consciousness are generated by physical processes occurring in brains. Views of this sort have dominated recent scholarly publication. The present volume, however, demonstrates—empirically—that this reductive materialism is not only incomplete but false. The authors systematically marshal evidence for a variety of psychological phenomena that are extremely difficult, and in some cases clearly impossible, to account for in conventional physicalist terms.
Jeffrey Kripal here recounts the spectacular history of Esalen, the institute that has long been a world leader in alternative and experiential education and stands today at the center of the human potential movement. Forged in the literary and mythical leanings of the Beat Generation, inspired in the lecture halls of Stanford by radical scholars of comparative religion, the institute was the remarkable brainchild of Michael Murphy and Richard Price.
Do religious experiences come from God, or are they merely the random firing of neurons in the brain? Drawing on his own research with Carmelite nuns, neuroscientist Mario Beauregard shows that genuine, life-changing spiritual events can be documented. He offers compelling evidence that religious experiences have a nonmaterial origin, making a convincing case for what many in scientific fields are loath to consider—that it is God who creates our spiritual experiences, not the brain.
What do the first major oil discovery in Kuwait, Mark Twain’s fiction, and Harriet Tubman’s success conducting slaves to freedom via the Underground Railroad have in common? They were all experienced first in dreams. Dreaming is vital to the human story. It is essential to our survival and evolution, to creative endeavors in every field, and, quite simply, to getting us through our daily lives. Robert Moss traces the strands of dreams through archival records and well-known writings, weaving remarkable yet true accounts of historical figures influenced by their dreams.
The notion that consciousness is confined to the brain, like software in a computer, has dominated science and philosophy for close to two centuries. Yet, according to this incisive review of contemporary neuroscience from Berkeley philosopher Nöe, the analogy is deeply flawed. In eight illuminating, mercifully jargon-free chapters, he defines what scientists really know about consciousness and makes a strong case that mind and awareness are processes that arise during a dynamic dance with the observer’s surroundings.
In 1993, the Institute of Noetic Sciences published Spontaneous Remission: An Annotated Bibliography. In this work, the authors, Caryle Hirshberg and the late Brendan O'Regan, defined spontaneous remission as "the disappearance, complete or incomplete, of a disease or cancer without medical treatment or treatment that is considered inadequate to produce the resulting disappearance of disease symptoms or tumor."
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