CIBA Foundation Symposium on Extrasensory Perception

CIBA Foundation Symposium on Extrasensory Perception

CIBA Foundation Symposium on Extrasensory Perception

CIBA Foundation Symposium on Extrasensory Perception

Excerpt

When Dr. Dingwall heard that one of the Ciba Foundation's small international conferences would be devoted to discussion of extrasensory perception, he exclaimed "incredible courage!". We did not feel particularly brave but had been easily persuaded by Dr. Parkes that there were matters arising from experimental work on communication other than by the known senses, which, if substantiated, would be of considerable importance in all branches of biological research. The time seemed ripe for an examination of the claims by a group composed of three categories of scientists: those engaged in such experimental work, those active in interpreting the findings, favourably or unfavourably in relation to extrasensory perception, and those to whom the problems were novel and disturbing, and therefore to be approached with even more than usual scientific caution. The Ciba Foundation is able to offer pleasantly informal conditions for discussions by small groups, and the circumstances appeared favourable for a friendly but critical review of the subject.

It would not have been possible to enlarge the group, but it was only afterwards that the Director learnt how widespread among scientists in many disciplines is the interest in experimental extrasensory perception. He can only hope that this volume of the proceedings may provide some compensation to those whom he neglected to invite.

As mentioned above, it was Dr. Parkes who initiated this symposium and it was, therefore, appropriate that he should preside over it. The Director is truly indebted to Dr. Parkes for his suggestion and for his chairmanship and also for great help in the organization of the meeting, based on much study of the relevant literature. Dr. Dingwall and Dr. Soal also very willingly provided invaluable expert advice.

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