AUGUST 14, 2016

Is There an Afterlife?:  Perspectives from Psychology’s Pioneers

Does some element of personality survive death? The idea that there might be life after death has been nearly universal in all cultures throughout history.  While mainstream psychology largely dismisses the notion as illusion, some major pioneers of modern psychology were less ready to renounce the possibility.  Such towering figures as William James, Frederic Myers, and Theodore Flournoy supported empirical investigation of the question, encountering evidence that they found hard to discount.  They constructed a model of the psyche, and a theory of its relationship to the brain, that could make afterlife plausible to scientifically oriented minds. This presentation will review their contributions, and explore the relevance of their work to some contemporary discussions about the nature of the psyche and the possibility of life after death.

Sunday, August 14, 2016
Plan on arriving at between 5:30 to 6:00 pm to socialize and settle in, announcements will start promptly at 6 and the program starts by 6:15 and typically runs until 8pm.

LOCATION:  Contact for location details
An historian of American thought and culture, Mark Ryan was Dean of Jonathan Edwards College and a teacher of American Studies and History at Yale University for more than twenty years. Subsequently, he was Titular IV Professor at the Universidad de las Américas in Puebla, Mexico, where he also served as Dean of the Colleges, Master of José Gaos College, and Coordinator of the graduate program in United States Studies. He holds Ph.D. and M. Phil. degrees from Yale, an M.A. from the University of Texas at Austin, and a B.A. from the University of St. Thomas. Mark is author of "A Collegiate Way of Living" (Yale University, 2001), articles in various journals on higher education, and articles in the Journal of Transpersonal Psychology and related publications on transpersonal thought. He served for fourteen years on the Board of Trustees of Naropa University, is past chair of the Board of Directors of Wisdom University, and current Chair of the Jonathan Edwards Trust at Yale. Certified by Grof Transpersonal Training as a practitioner of Holotropic Breathwork, Mark now teaches regularly for the Wisdom School of Graduate Studies and at the C. G. Jung Educational Center of Houston.

Houston IONS is a SIG community group studying and supporting the work of the Institute of Noetic Sciences in Petaluma, California. (

​We conduct monthly programs ranging from reflective, discussion and experiential.

We normally meet on the second Sunday of the month from 5:30 PM to 8 PM.

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