Adam Crabtree's The Way Ahead for Psi & Afterlife Research



The Way Ahead

We are a group of people from a great diversity of background who are engaged in a study initially centered on survival which has extended into broader fields of psychology and philosophy. I see us as individuals with deep interests in these matters, interests that emerge from both professional and personal experiences.

In our discussions there has been a constant interweaving of empirical and theoretical perspectives. How could it be otherwise? Everything we know is based on experience, but we are constantly striving to unify or contextualize or just plain make sense out of that experience. We formulate and reformulate theories in the hope of accomplishing that task. We have recently somewhat shifted the emphasis of our talks toward the theoretical, but that shift is significantly tempered by the fact that if we are going to be effective in our theory-building, we must constantly relate our speculations to experience.

In Irreducible Mind we have produced a powerful document which examines the range of psychological and psycho-physical phenomena from the ordinary to the extraordinary, highlighting the neglect of the latter and the need to begin a new era of serious study of the fullness of concrete human experience. Irreducible Mind fittingly concluded with a call for a general theory that would embrace all the “stubborn facts” of human reality. The answer to that call is our projected second book, at this point simply referred to as our “theory-building book.” As I see it, our theory-building book needs to work toward the development of a general theory of human being and experience that is inclusive of all the data and consistent with solidly established but less general theories (such as quantum mechanics). This will best be done by taking into account ideas provided by previous researchers and theoreticians. If we are to be successful in our theory building, especially if we are to arrive at an agreed-upon general theory, it will be because we have built on the shoulders of those who have gone before.

But to do this we must first confront a fundamental problem that has plagued discussions of the type of phenomena referred to in Irreducible Mind over the past 150 years....