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Rational Mysticism: Spirituality Meets Science in the Search for… (2003)
by John Horgan
Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 061844663X, Paperback)
In Rational Mysticism, acclaimed journalist John Horgan embarks on an adventure of discovery, investigating the ways in which scientists, theologians, and philosophers are attempting to formulate an empirical explanation of spiritual enlightenment. Horgan visits and interviews a fascinating Who's Who of experts, including theologian Huston Smith; Andrew Newberg, explorer of the brain's "God module"; Ken Wilber, a transpersonal psychologist and Buddhist; psychedelic pharmacologist Alexander Shulgin; Oxford-educated psychologist and Zen practitioner Susan Blackmore; and postmodern shaman Terence McKenna. Horgan also explores the effects of reputed enlightenment-inducing techniques such as fasting, meditation, prayer, sensory deprivation, and drug trips. In his lively and thought-provoking inquiry, Horgan finds surprising connections among seemingly disparate disciplines, not the least of which is a shared awe of the nature of the universe.
(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:21:37 -0400)
How do trances, visions, prayer, satori, and other mystical experiences "work"? What induces and defines them? Is there a scientific explanation for religious mysteries and transcendent meditation? John Horgan investigates a wide range of fields - chemistry, neuroscience, psychology, anthropology, theology, and more - to narrow the gap between reason and mystical phenomena. As both a seeker and an award-winning journalist, Horgan consulted a wide range of experts, including theologian Huston Smith, spiritual heir to Joseph Campbell, Andrew Newberg, the scientist whose quest for the "God machine" was the focus of a Newsweek cover story, Ken Wilber, prominent transpersonal psychologist, Alexander Shulgin, legendary psychedelic drug chemist, and Susan Blackmore, Oxford-educated psychologist, parapsychology debunker, and Buddhist.
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