consciousness, Philosophy

Inner Experience Is Real, and It Matters

Our culture tends to devalue things that can't be observed by multiple people, but some of the most important aspects of life (for instance, pleasure and pain, joy and sorrow, the very feeling of meaning) can't be observed by anyone but the person experiencing them. In today's post on PsychologyToday.com, I argue that it's time… Continue reading Inner Experience Is Real, and It Matters

consciousness, Philosophy

Why It’s Simpler to Believe That Everything Is Conscious

Physicalism is often seen as being a simple, no-nonsense theory of reality, well suited to hard-nosed, scientifically minded folks. But, in fact, the classic physicalist view postulates much stranger, more mysterious entities than another type of view that's now gaining currency in philosophical circles: the view that everything that exists is conscious. I explain this… Continue reading Why It’s Simpler to Believe That Everything Is Conscious

consciousness, near-death experience, Philosophy

Is Life a Dream?

Today's post on my Psychology Today blog, "Mysteries of Consciousness," explores a question that has bothered skeptical philosophers for centuries, if not millenia: How do we know that life is not just a dream? I argue that this is not just an idle question and that the answer to it stands to have important empirical… Continue reading Is Life a Dream?

coincidences, consciousness, Philosophy, Science

Introducing my Psychology Today blog: “Mysteries of Consciousness”

Those of you who are particularly interested in the scientific and philosophical underpinnings of my research into coincidences and consciousness may also want to follow my new Psychology Today blog, "Mysteries of Consciousness." My first post, yesterday, was called "What If Consciousness Comes First?" and discusses how finding an adequate explanation for the way the… Continue reading Introducing my Psychology Today blog: “Mysteries of Consciousness”

Book Reviews, coincidences, Parapsychology, Philosophy, Spirituality, Writing

My new book on coincidences is out!

It's been a long time coming, but I am thrilled to announce the arrival of my new book: The Source and Significance of Coincidences: An Astonishing Look at the Hard Evidence. I am also thrilled to announce that less than 24 hours after its release, it is already the #1 new release in ESP on… Continue reading My new book on coincidences is out!

coincidences, Parapsychology, Philosophy

What are the odds of THAT?

Lots of people--myself included--are persuaded of the existence of psychic phenomena by their own personal experiences. But how can we know if the strange events we experience are really psychic or if they are merely very rare chance occurrences? Just this week, I published an article in The Journal of Scientific Exploration that provides a statistical method… Continue reading What are the odds of THAT?

consciousness, Parapsychology, Philosophy

Can a Heart Transplant Change Your Identity?

When I was in graduate school for philosophy, I took a class with Derek Parfit who was known for his work on the relationship between personal identity and ethics. One of the thought experiments he asked us to consider (taken from his book Reasons and Persons) involved our brain's being transplanted into two separate bodies--half of… Continue reading Can a Heart Transplant Change Your Identity?

Book Reviews, Parapsychology, Philosophy, Spirituality

Children Who Remember Heaven

A few years ago, philosopher Stephen E. Braude wrote an excellent book analyzing the evidence for life after death. His book, Immortal Remains, stands out from most other works in this field by virtue of its rigorous attention to detail and its careful consideration of alternative hypotheses for the evidence: notably, the super-psi hypothesis, which attributes apparent contact with the deceased… Continue reading Children Who Remember Heaven

Philosophy, Spirituality

A World Ruled by Meaning

Those who know of my intense interest in near-death experiences and past-life memories might be surprised to discover that, not so long ago, I was an atheist. Four years ago, I didn't believe in a higher power and I didn't believe in life after death. I had given up all those "spiritual" beliefs around age twenty, when I… Continue reading A World Ruled by Meaning

Philosophy, psychology, Writing

Why We Read

A few weeks ago, I read a blog post by someone who was upset by research that suggested people don't read in order to find information that could make their beliefs more accurate but primarily in order to confirm the beliefs they already have (a noted exception being the times we read work by authors we love to hate,… Continue reading Why We Read