Letter from the
Letter from the Founding Presidents – March 10, 2018
Welcome to the Academy for the Advancement of Postmaterialist Sciences (AAPS). It is our privilege to have been elected to serve as the founding presidents of AAPS, and therefore to have the opportunity to jointly write the first ‘Letter from the President.’ It is our hope that this will become a yearly tradition for future presidents of AAPS.
The materialist scientific worldview has been dominant in academia as well as the medical community for more than two centuries. This mainstream worldview presumes that the brain is the sole creator of human (and animal) consciousness, and therefore when the physical brain dies, consciousness dies as well.
However, there are other worldviews that propose that consciousness is fundamental to all of life. A substantial body of scientific evidence now exists that supports the more ancient as well as contemporary view that mind and consciousness are core to the existence and evolution of the universe.
AAPS was created to inspire scientists and their students to expand their theories, research, and applications to investigate this postmaterialist paradigm . This intention includes the desire to educate the science-minded public concerning this emerging research. The postmaterialist paradigm encourages and integrates third person, first person, and transpersonal scientific methods and theories.
As AAPS’s first presidents, we proposed to the founding board of directors that AAPS should clearly express its core values. The following nine values were conceived and formally adopted by our eleven member board:
- Support rigorous applications of the scientific method
- Nurture curiosity and creativity in research
- Encourage open-minded exploratory and confirmatory investigations
- Model integrity and honesty in communication and education
- Value experimental and empirical data over dogma
- Create safe settings for sharing theories, evidence, and experiences
- Promote evidence-based innovation and positive societal change
- Expand awareness of the interconnectedness of all things
- Share postmaterialist evidence and understanding with the public
If you share these values, then we encourage you to join with us and create a global community to advance postmaterialist consciousness science.
We would like to briefly address the question of scientific skepticism and draw the important distinction between:
- Healthy skepticism – i.e. the careful and responsible questioning of concepts, methods, and findings, versus
- Unhealthy skepticism – i.e. the biased denigration or dismissal of replicated findings and rational implications, for ideological, personal, and / or political reasons.
Carl Sagan, PhD, the distinguished Cornell astronomer and skeptic, appreciated this distinction. One of our favorite Sagan quotes is:
When he (the 16th C. astronomer, Johannes Kepler) found that his long cherished beliefs did not agree with the most precise observations, he accepted the uncomfortable facts.
He preferred the hard truth to his dearest delusions; that is the heart of science.
AAPS is devoted to Sagan’s ‘heart of science.’ We invite you to join with us in this important scientific adventure.