Scientists Call for More Psi Research Funding: Some ninety scientists and academics have co-signed a letter, written by Etzel Cardeña of Lund University and published in Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, that calls for more mainstream support of open and honest investigation of parapsychological topics, and related mysteries of human consciousness. Cardena points out; this type of research has continued for over a century despite the taboo against investigating the topic, despite almost complete lack of funding, and professional and personal attacks; results supporting the validity of psi phenomena continue to be published in peer-reviewed, academic journals in relevant fields from psychology to neuroscience to physics; more than twenty Nobel prizewinners and many other eminent scientists have supported the study of psi or even conducted research themselves; and, meta-analyses and other studies suggest that data supportive of psi phenomena cannot reasonably be accounted for by chance.
From: “Scientists Call For Open, Informed Study of Psi Effects and Consciousness,” Posted by Greg 13 Jan 2014, dailygrail.com/Fresh-Science/2014/1/Scientists-Call-Open-Informed-Study-Psi-Effects-and-Consciousness
Conscious Aging: The final third phase of life is a great opportunity for spiritual, emotional and psychological growth. It’s a time to celebrate a life journey, to harvest the wisdom of those experiences, and to share what was meaningful in the company of others. And yet in our youth-obsessed culture there is a lot of fear and anxiety about growing older, especially for those who enter their later years alone. Recognizing this, the Institute of Noetic Sciences has developed a program specifically for facilitators who want to work with seniors ready to embrace this phase of their journey. This program is called Conscious Aging. It was created over four years, and field-tested across a broad range of practitioners and settings.
If you are interested in being a facilitator for this program, please see noetic.org/education/conscious-aging/.
Praise for IONS’ Conscious Aging Program from Nan Merrick Phifer, author of Memoirs of the Soul: A Writing Guide writes, “This program gently leads participants toward compassionate self-understanding. Though written for people past midlife, it is a guide for all mature people who seek connectedness and inner peace, for it identifies those qualities in oneself that bring about fulfillment.”
From: Conscious Aging Workshops Facilitator Training Program, noetic.org/education/conscious-aging/
Survey at CSAPP: Researchers from the Centre for the Study of Anomalous Psychological Processes (CSAPP), based in the Psychology Division of the University of Northampton, are interested in whether people seek support following an anomalous experience. They acknowledge that anomalous experiences can be both distressing and positive and would like to know where people go if they want to discuss the meaning of the experience or seek support. If you or someone you know can help them with the survey, find it at survey.northampton.ac.uk/care. The survey is completed anonymously and takes around ten to fifteen minutes to complete. The deadline for the survey is August, 1 2015 and you need to be at least eighteen years of age to take part
From: “CARE Project: Help-seeking behaviors following an anomalous experience (AE),” The University of Hampton, northampton.ac.uk [Closed]
Shared Deathbed Visions (SDEs): We previously reported on Raymond Moody’s recent work concerning reports of how people near the moment of their transition sometimes indicate the presence of discarnate loved ones, and that those visions are sometimes shared by friends and family who are present. The “Shared Death Study” (Shareddeathstudy.org) is the global shared death experience research study and story repository site.
Dr. Raymond Moody writes, “It is the study of these experiences that may finally prove life after death.” It is the aim of SharedDeathStudy.org to collect as many shared death experience stories from all over the world, in as many languages as possible. When participants add their stories, they are asked a specially designed list of questions that will help researcher cross-compare accounts to better understand this amazing phenomenon. Another interesting discussion board regarding this phenomenon is the Deathbed Visions pages at: allnurses.com/general-nursing-discussion/death-bed-visions-301825.html.
Physical Séance Room Recollections: Stewart Alexander has recently launched a double CD album with a series of first hand fascinating physical séance room accounts told by senior Spiritualists, who in years gone by, were privileged to sit with mediums who today we can only read about. A few of the mediums discussed are Gladys Osborne Leonard, Helen Duncan and Alec Harris. All the speakers witnessed and personally experienced the manifestations they describe and took the time and trouble to record them in audio form for the interest, education and benefit of contemporary and future Spiritualists and all other interested parties. That they did so prior to their own transition has left us with a marvelous legacy and we owe an incalculable debt to them all. Often exceeding the “boggle factor,” their amazing séance room recollections bring back to life the wonders of the past and thereby keep alive that which must never be forgotten. The cost is £12.50 for orders email stewart.alexander [at] finka.karoo.co.uk or contact via postal service, Stewart Alexander c/o 85 Alexandra Road, Hull. HU5 2NX. UK. Also see review at spr.ac.uk/publication/physical-s%C3%A9ance-room-recollections-compilation-album-no-1-2014
Recording EVP During Séances: An interesting experiment for people who have a home circle is to record for Electronic Voice Phenomena (EVP) as a background activity to their normal development activities. EVP are voices found in recording media that were not audibly heard during the recording session. There is information about how to record and how to find possible EVP in a paper that can be downloaded at atransc.org/itc-white-paper/.
Also see the article, “A report of the relationship between physical phenomena and EVP” by Rachel Browning at atransc.org/evp-in-seances.
Meditation’s Benefits: In recent years Meditation practice, derived from various branches of Buddhism, has made its way into the secular world as a means of promoting calmness and general well-being. Three common forms of meditation—focused attention, mindfulness and compassion—are now practiced everywhere, from hospitals to schools, and have increasingly become an object of scrutiny in scientific laboratories worldwide.
Physiological changes in the brain, such as an altered volume of tissue in some areas, have been shown to occur through meditation. Practitioners also experience beneficial psychological effects: they react faster to stimuli and are less prone to various forms of stress. A recent article in Scientific American magazine claimed meditation is like Valium and Oxycontin without the side effects.
From: “Neuroscience Reveals the Secrets of Meditation’s Benefits” by Matthieu Ricard, Antoine Lutz and Richard J. Davidson, Scientific American, November 2014
Meditation Research: The Institute of Noetic Sciences (IONS) is continuing to encourage scientists and health care practitioners to expand the boundaries of their research and practices into areas of human existence that are meaningful to most people, yet scientifically under explored. In their “Future of Meditation Research” meetings they invite scientists who study meditation and ask them to reach further into their research questions and methods to look at the effects of meditation, not only on physical and cognitive processes, but also on the extraordinary abilities and transformative experiences that can arise in the course of meditation practice. See: noetic.org/meditation-bibliography/overview/
For Seekers: “Enlightenment is always there. Small enlightenment will bring great enlightenment. If you breathe in and are aware that you are alive—that you can touch the miracle of being alive—then that is a kind of enlightenment. Many people are alive but don’t touch the miracle of being alive.” Thich Nhat Hanh