In Search of the Self: The Science of Transcendence

A Lecture by Dr. Sam Parnia May 15, 2008

One of the subjects that has both captivated and eluded humankind throughout time is the mystery of the “Self”-that entity which endows each of us with our unique and transcendent personalities, thoughts, traits, and emotions. Although we are inherently aware of and involved with our own selves, we neither understand how this sense of self emerges, nor the nature of the complex relationship between the mind and the brain.

Traditionally the domain of philosophers, theologians, and psychologists, the mind-brain question has more recently been tackled by increasing numbers of scientists as well. Though some within the scientific community argue that the question of the self or consciousness may never be resolved by science, many continue to work eagerly toward illuminating one of the last unknown frontiers in modern medicine and neuroscience.

Dr. Sam Parnia, author of “What Happens When We Die,” chronicles the history and development of the age-old question of the “Self” as seen through the eyes of philosophy, psychology, and now modern science. At the same time, he will introduce the novel method he and his colleagues have devised to study the phenomenon of consciousness and the human mind, which they hope will finally enable science to resolve this enigma.

One of the world’s leading experts on the scientific study of death, the state of the human mind-brain, and near-death experiences, Dr. Sam Parnia spends his time between hospitals in the United Kingdom and Cornell University in New York, where he is a Fellow in Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine. Founder of the Consciousness Research Group and Horizon Research Foundation, he has published extensively and presented his work at scientific institutions across the country. His groundbreaking research has been featured on the Discovery Channel documentary, “The Day I Died.”

Location: The Nour Foundation Gallery
322 West 108th Street, New York, NY