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States of Consciousness

States of Consciousness

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Published by James

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Published by: James on Jan 08, 2010
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States of Consciousness
Section II: Speculation
States of Consciousness
©1975 by Charles T. TartFirst published by E.P. Dutton & Co., New York, in 1975.ISBN 0-525-20970-0
States of Consciousness
appears in The Psychedelic Library by permission of the Author
Introduction to the Web Edition, 1997
I am very pleased that the Schaffer Library is now making this book available over the World Wide Web. Thegreatly increasing interest in the nature of consciousness in the last few years makes this material even morerelevant than when it was originally published in 1975.Unfortunately too much of the current scientific and popular interest in consciousness tends to be simplisticallyreductionistic, a "Consciousness is nothing but……" approach, where the particular "nothing but" may be brainfunctioning, language, philosophical abstractions, etc. All these approaches have valuable things to offer ourunderstanding, but do grave injustice to the richness and complexity of our consciousness with suchoversimplification. My systems approach presented in this book is not simplistic, but tries to deal with the whole,rich range of conscious functioning, particularly as it is expressed in altered states of consciousness (ASCs) likehypnosis, dreaming, meditation, drug-induced states, etc.While my approach is primarily scientific, the book was written clearly to be accessible to all educated people(indeed, I have sometimes gotten in trouble with the University, which has "reasoned" that if my writings can beunderstood they must not be really scholarly….). Many of the students in my altered states classes over the yearshave also found considerable personal relevance in this approach. As one young woman put it, at first she didn'tunderstand what all these diagrams of mine were about and then one day she suddenly realized that I had beentalking about the way
mind actually worked!The basic systems approach I developed to understanding ASCs in this book is still my basic approach to working
http://www.druglibrary.org/special/tart/soccont.htm (2 of 4)4/15/2004 11:36:09 AM
States of Consciousness
with consciousness. In my (undoubtedly biased) opinion, it is still superior in important ways to the simplisticapproaches that have preceded and followed it. In the past 20 years I have developed this approach further, usingcomputer generated virtual reality systems to illustrate how consciousness creates a
biological-psychologicalvirtual reality
(BPVR) in which we experientially live, a semi-arbitrary
of the world
 which we naively mistake for straightforward and accurate perception of external reality. This expansion of thesystems model can be found in my writings listed below.For those who prefer the pleasure of a real book to reading from a screen (I still do!), there are still some soft covercopies of the second edition of 
States of Consciousness
available at $ 12.95 (plus sales tax for California residents)and $ 3 for shipping within the US, $ 10 for air shipping outside the US. Checks or money orders must bedenominated in US currency. Other books and tapes of mine are also available, and $ 1 will bring a catalog. Writeto PPI, Box 8385, Berkeley CA 94707-8385.Incidentally I made a great literary mistake in naming this book 
States of Consciousness
after earlier publishing my
 Altered States of Consciousness
(1969), as readers get the two books confused, If they've read the one, they think they've read the other.
 Altered States
of Consciousness
is an anthology detailing the rich variety of what canhappen in ASCs.
of Consciousness
is my attempt to make some coherent sense of this vast spectrum of experiences.
 Altered States
of Consciousness
is also available from PPI for $ 16.95 plus shipping (and tax if thebook is shipped to a California address), as above.Charles T. TartBerkeley, CaliforniaSeptember 1997 
Further developments of the Systems Approach:
Charles T. Tart, An Emergent Interactionist Understanding of Human Consciousness
 Brain/Mind and Parapsychology: Proceedings of an International Conference
, held in Montreal, Canada, August 24-25, 1978under the auspices of the Parapsychology Foundation, New York, NY. Available over the web fromhttp://www.paradigm-sys.com/cttart/ (66K)Charles T. Tart, Consciousness: A Psychological, Transpersonal and Parapsychological Approach Presented at the
Third International Symposium on Science and Consciousness in Ancient Olympia
, 4-7 January, 1993. Availableover the web fromhttp://www.paradigm-sys.com/cttart/ (27K)Charles T. Tart, Mind Embodied! Computer-Generated Virtual Reality as a New, Dualistic-Interactive Model forTranspersonal Psychology,, Based on a speech given at the L. E. Rhine Centenary Conference on
CultivatingConsciousness for Enhancing Human Potential, Wellness and Healing
, Durham, North Carolina, November 9,1991. A modified version was later published in K. Rao (Editor),
Cultivating Consciousness Enhancing HumanPotential, Wellness and Healing
. Westport, Connecticut: Praeger, 1993. Pp. 123-137. Available over the web fromhttp://www.paradigm-sys.com/cttart/ (44K)
http://www.druglibrary.org/special/tart/soccont.htm (3 of 4)4/15/2004 11:36:09 AM

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