do you exist

About

'I' exist, in that I am 'some thing' that experiences reality, subjectively. This fact is clearly very important given that organisms in general invest vast amounts of energy into existence...but the question remains, what is this thing that 'I' am?

We're an affiliation of scientists and philosophers who are united in the desire to highlight questions about the nature of consciousness. Our activities are two-fold:

    1. Synergise - facilitating connections between like-minded individuals
    2. Synthesise - building a model of reality that is philosophically sound and in line with scientific data

1. synergise

A. Chasing Reality Podcast

The aim of this podcast (audio & video) is to interview scholars at the forefront of their fields, and who have useful insights into the possible nature of consciousness. The future vision of Chasing Reality is to connect these different thinkers with one another, in order to generate a cross-pollination of ideas and collaborative projects.

Hear from Akhandadhi das, founder of the Science & Philosophy Initiative, as he outlines some fundamental premises behind his Vedic-inspired model of consciousness and matter, the Atma Paradigm.

After three decades of work into the effects of consciousness on physical systems at Princeton University, Brenda reveals some fascinating insights, ideas and brilliant stories.

Check out the two-part series with Professor Denis Noble from Oxford University, as he (and Perry Marshall) speaks about the revolution that modern physiological insight is bringing to the theory of evolution.

One of the best podcast episodes yet as voted by the listeners. Join Dr Sharon Hewitt-Rawlette on a remarkable journey through coincidences, and what they could possibly inform us about the nature of consciousness.

Professor Michael Ruse wrote the textbook on the Philosophy of Biology...literally. Join him here for a heart-felt glimpse into his latest book, in which he reflects on a long and fulfilling life as a philosopher and historian.

B. Bhaktivedanta Institute (BI) Connect Project

The organising committee of this site are dedicated practitioners of Bhakti Yoga. This discipline is grounded in a Vedic appreciation of reality, and seeks to combine self-evident experience with sound philosophical insight.

Given the incredible utility of this knowledge, the Science & Philosophy Initiative (in collaboration with the BIHS) is endeavouring to bring together other scholarly Bhakti Yoga practitioners from across the globe, in order that there might be some cross-pollination between Vedic insight and Western philosophical thought. This is currently an internal project for the Bhaktivedanta tradition called BI Connect, and we hope that in the years to come there will be opportunities to branch out and form valuable collaborations. If you are interested in hearing more or getting involved, please contact connect@biconnect.org.

2. synthesise

Atma Paradigm

The Atma Paradigm is a philosophical & science-consistent framework for the nature of consciousness and its interaction with the brain and the physical world. It draws upon Vedic philosophical insights in order to assess scientific data in a way that embraces the phenomenon of conscious experience.

For more information, please refer to this summary file, a recent Aeon article, and feel free to get in touch to discuss any further ideas, suggestions or questions.

organising committee


Akhandadhi das

Vaishnava theologian, philosopher of mind, BBC Thought of the Day regular, and very interested in the interaction of consciousness at all levels of reality.

Ryan Bissett PhD

Trained in molecular parasitology, as well as a prior fling with fruit flies in Lyon. Always on the look out for anyone who likes to think on the question of what is 'life'?

affiliates


Kunal Mooley PhD

Postdoctoral researcher studying astrophysical transient phenomena, such as supernovae, gamma-ray bursts and gravitational wave sources, at the National Radio Astronomy Observatory and California Institute of Technology.

SPi collaborator interested in space and time in the context of the brain and mind.

Jasmine Jakubowski PhD

Just completed a PhD studying drug resistance in cancer cells.

Soumya Gupta PhD

Obtained PhD in Cell and Nuclear Biology from NCBS-TIFR, Bangalore, and worked as a medical writer for a few years.

Now collaborating with SPi to understand the symptoms of consciousness across different organisms.

Dishant Sharma PhD

Postdoctoral associate studying Canavan disease at the Gene Therapy Centre, Albert Sherman Centre, Department of Medicine, University of Massachusetts, Worcester, USA.

An active supporter of SPi, and keen to understand possible effects of consciousness at the level of molecular biology.