How does your pet “know” when you are coming home? How do pigeons “home”? Can people really feel a “phantom” amputated arm? These questions and more form the basis of Sheldrake’s look at the world of contemporary science as he puts some of the most cherished assumptions of established science to the test. What Sheldrake discovers is that certain scientific beliefs are so widely taken for granted that they are no longer regarded as theories but are seen as scientific common sense. In the true spirit of science, Sheldrake examines seven of these beliefs.
This work was the first sustained philosophical study of psychic phenomena to follow C.D. Broad’s LECTURES ON PSYCHICAL RESEARCH, written nearly twenty years earlier. The author clearly defines the categories of psychic phenomena, surveys the most compelling experimental data, and traces their implications for the philosophy of science and the philosophy of mind. He considers carefully the abstract presuppositions underlying leading theories of psychic phenomena, and he offers bold criticisms of both mechanistic analyses of communication and psychophysical identity theories.
Psi Open Data is an open repository for parapsychological and psychical research data, launched recently by the Society for Psychical Research.