Communications technology is often accused of dissociating us from the natural world. A little thought-experiment that explores how the next generation of “augmented reality” technologies might close this gap, and help us hear like an elephant and think like a squirrel.
Proponents of nonduality tell us that we take a leap of faith and actually live our lives from the truth of direct experience, eventually the age old barrier between inside and out will erode. A report from the 2013 Science and Nonduality conference in Holland.
Western psychology is still outgrowing a reactive skepticism towards the subjective anecdote that it inherited from behaviorism. Fortunately, this is changing. These days, there is a growing appreciation among investigators that if you want to understand consciousness – as opposed to just brain activity – you have to start taking first-person reports seriously. This will soon include reports of human “enlightenment.”
The Dream Director is not unlike a set of DJ turntables, only the medium it remixes is the mind – the proto medium. As the DJ, the user can select from an infinite number of effects. The weirder the combination, the stranger the conjured world… come remix the dreaming mind.
What might science look like in another reality? In lucid dreaming, an investigator can form a hypothesis in waking, fall asleep, become lucid, and then – in rainbow lab coat and marvellous wind-swept Vidal Sassoon hairdo – test her hypothesis as the dream surges around her.
This piece about mind, nature, and the fashionable jungle brew ayahuasca won Gold for best personal journalism at the 2011 Canadian National Magazine Awards. What can psychedelics tell us about reality? Less and more than you might think. Includes an update at end, because, you know, experience keeps changing.
Our century marks a New Age of Exploration, into an even more mysterious frontier, with empirical discoveries that may turn out to be every bit as revolutionary as the ones that undergirded the first Age of Enlightenment. The frontier is the dreaming mind, and the new explorers are known as lucid dreamers.
What would we learn if we could merge parts of the human brain with those of other species? Might we hear the sounds of the past? Live in naked troops, swapping intimate experiences without words? Or build a new social network? A fun and wide-ranging conversation with two smart friends – Lori Marino and Ben Goertzel – published in the Christmas 2011 issue of New Scientist.