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The Spiritual Doorway in the Brain: A Neurologist's Search for the God Experience
 
 
Author
Kevin Nelson.
Publisher Dutton  
Format hardcover
Product Dimensions 9.25 x 6.25 x 1 inches
ISBN 9780525951889
Pages/Publication Date 326/2011
Daedalus Item Code 31231
This item is not available.
Description
If Buddha had not been under the Bodhi tree but rather in an MRI machine when he attained enlightenment, what would we have seen on the monitor? Neurologist Kevin Nelson seeks to answer such questions in this exploration of the borderlands of consciousness. Building on 30 years of studying near-death experiences, and discussing his own case studies, he finds that spiritual awareness—for the Buddhist, the devout Catholic, and even the atheist—takes place in one of the most ancient areas of the brain.

"Nelson has spent decades exploring what underlies spiritual experiences, so there is more to this book than physiological probing. In particular, the author is sensitive to the intensity of a transcendent moment, how it 'deeply moves us or transports us and connects us in one way or another with something larger than ourselves.' As a neurologist, however, he seeks an explanation based on well-established brain mechanisms. Nelson is humble and balanced, wary of our perception of consciousness and infectiously fascinated by how the brain shapes it."—Kirkus Reviews

"Nelson begins his work by letting 19th-century psychologist-philosopher William James define the all-important categories of spiritual and religious experiences.... Chapters are devoted to various states of consciousness, near-death experiences, and dreaming.... Adding to the appeal are the many anecdotes from the author's life and practice as a physician."—Booklist

 
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