The Primacy of Consciousness – The Next Great Scientific Revolution?

A partnership between
Galileo Commission
Scientific and Medical Network
Academy for the Advancement of Postmaterialist Sciences 
Institute of Noetic Sciences


“I regard consciousness as fundamental, matter is derivative from consciousness. We cannot get behind consciousness. Everything that we talk about, everything that we regard as existing, postulates consciousness. There is no matter as such; it exists only by virtue of a force bringing the particle to vibration and holding it together in a minute solar system; we must assume behind this force the existence of a conscious and intelligent mind. The mind is the matrix of all matter” – Max Planck


What if consciousness is fundamental and even primary?

Join some of the world’s leading consciousness researchers for a series of round tables to launch the landmark Academy for the Advancement of Postmaterialist Sciences (AAPS) volume: Is Consciousness Primary?

– Edited by Stephan A. Schwartz, Marjorie Woollacott PhD and Gary E. Schwartz PhD –

The Galileo Commission report argues for an expansion of the philosophical basis of a science of consciousness beyond the conventional physicalist worldview by widening the evidence base to examine the implications for our understanding of reality of research into significant human experiences such as veridical OBE perceptions in NDEs, children who remember previous lives, and extensive scientific studies of parapsychological phenomena. The Galileo Commission encourages scientists and academics to ‘look through the telescope’ at this evidence base that represents a fundamental challenge to the prevailing materialistic outlook.

There is now growing support for the idea that consciousness is fundamental and even primary, as Max Planck noted – and these views have considerably greater explanatory power when it comes to accounting for this wider evidence base, which materialist positions tend to ignore or dismiss – as Jeff Kripal observes, our conclusions are a function of our exclusions and that to ‘dismiss is to miss’.

This first Galileo Commission Summit will feature a series of roundtables with most of the prominent researchers in this first volume of the AAPS book series Advances in Postmaterialist Sciences, created with the intent of educating scientists, students, and science-minded readers about postmaterialist consciousness research and its applications. The intention is that each volume combines rigour and creativity, expresses first person (inner experiences) as well as third person (external observations), and facilitates the betterment of humanity and the planet.


The inspiration for the theme of this first volume, “Is Consciousness Primary?” came about at the end of the first meeting of the Founding Board of Directors of the Academy for the Advancement of Postmaterialist Science in August of 2017 in Tucson, Arizona.

During the last session of the meeting, each presenter shared the evolution of the thinking and research that had led them to accept the idea that nonlocal

consciousness, not physical or biological matter, is causal and fundamental. The group was intrigued by the overlapping themes they heard from their co-presenters, spread across the group’s varied research in neuroscience, psychology, physics, and clinical medicine.

It was suggested that each presenter at the meeting share their research and conclusions in chapters to be published in this volume, in which they each respond to the question “Is Consciousness Primary?” through examples from their own life experience and research. We believe this volume is unique in sharing both the contributing authors’ first-person experiences that transformed their understanding of the primacy of consciousness, and the research that supports this perspective.

Read the press release here.

Read the Layman’s Guide to the Galileo Commission report here.

“The scientific world is to a very large extent in denial about consciousness. These essays on the primacy of consciousness go a significant way towards addressing such a limitation” – Prof Brian Josephson, FRS; Nobel laureate, Physics; Emeritus Professor of Physics, University of Cambridge.


Galileo Commission Summit and Book Launch

Co-chaired by David Lorimer, Dr Rupert Sheldrake, Prof Marjorie Woollacott, and Prof Bernard Carr


Fri - Sat, 4 - 5 December 2020
Event has passed


4:00 pm - 8:30 pm

Local Time

  • Timezone: America/New_York
  • Date: Fri - Sat, 4 - 5 December 2020
  • Time: 11:00 am - 3:30 pm




  • Dr Daniel J. Benor
    Dr Daniel J. Benor

    Dr Daniel J. Benor, MD, ABIHM is a holistic psychiatric psychotherapist who blends in his therapy elements from intuitive and spiritual awareness, spiritual healing (as in Reiki and Therapeutic Touch), WHEE – Wholistic Hybrid derived from Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) and Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT), transactional analysis, gestalt therapy, hypnotherapy, meditation, imagery and relaxation, dream analysis, and other approaches. Dr. Benor has taught this spectrum of methods internationally for 35 years to people involved in holistic, intuitive, and spiritual approaches to caring, health and personal development. Dr. Benor founded The Doctor-Healer Network in England. He is the author of 7 Minutes to Natural Pain Release, Healing Research (volumes I-III) and many articles on holistic, spiritual healing. He is the editor of the peer reviewed International Journal of Healing and Caring – On Line and moderator of, a major informational website on spiritual awareness, healing and CAM research.

  • Edward R. Close
    Edward R. Close

    Edward R. Close, PhD has been involved in pursuing an understanding of the interaction of consciousness and quantum reality since 1977. He is currently research consultant to the Pacific Neuropsychiatric Institute in Seattle, and Principle Environmental Scientist at EJC Advantage, LLC, in Missouri. His academic background and experience have uniquely prepared him for involvement in post-materialism scientific research. Ed has received a number of recognitions and awards, including the Gabino Barreda Award, from the government of Mexico in 2013, “for his history of service and contribution to the strengthening of the educational system”, presented at the first Science and Spirituality Conference in Puebla Mexico, where he was a guest speaker. He also received special recognition in 2016, along with Dr. Vernon Neppe, from the ISPE, receiving the worldwide, interdisciplinary, seldom awarded, Whiting Memorial Prize.

  • Menas C. Kafatos
    Menas C. Kafatos

    Menas C. Kafatos, PhD is the Fletcher Jones Endowed Chair Professor of Computational Physics at Chapman University, Orange, CA. He served as Founding Dean of the Schmid College of Science and Technology and Vice Chancellor at Chapman University (2009-2012). He directs the Center of Excellence in Earth Systems Modeling and Observations. He has published and co-authored 19 books including The Conscious Universe (Springer-Verlag, 1990, 2000), The Non-local Universe (Oxford University Press (1999), Principles of Integrative Science (Romanian Academy of Sciences Press, 2000); Looking In, Seeing Out (Theosophical Publishing House, 1991). He is co-author with Deepak Chopra of the New York Times best seller book You Are the Universe (Penguin/Harmony/Random House, 2017), and Living the Living Presence (in Korean, Miroksa Press, Seoul, 2016; and in Greek, Melissa Publishing, 2017). He has published more than 320 peer-reviewed journal articles, refereed published proceedings and book chapters.