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questions and answers
Q - To whom does this site address?
A - This site is addressed to curious and intelligent people, open- and critically-minded.
Q - What topics the site deals with?
A - The meaning and purpose of human life from the point of view of our conscious Ego and the psychic experiences in which it (she/he) is involved.
Q - Are these issues important?
A - It depends: certainly the arguments here dealt with do not solve the many complex problems that this life involves. On the other hand, since human life is a journey with a beginning and an end, as we progress over time along this path the curiosity of knowing if our experiences have a meaning, and whether behind their complexity there may be a design, a direction, increases. In this regard, the topics presented here may be interesting and revealing.
Q - This site has a religious tendency?
A - Absolutely not, at least not in the conventional and traditional sense of the term. There is no mention of an anthropologically conceived deity, nor of patterns of behavior to be followed, resulting in rewards or punishments. However, the possibility that the conscious Ego may continue to exist in another dimension, also after the body's death and the brain's dissolution, is evaluated.
Q - How is the site organized?
A - The menu on the left side includes various sections, each dedicated to a particular topic. Clicking on one of its buttons, an introductory page to that section opens, and on the right side another menu shows up, which allows to access all the pages in that section.
Q - How can I see if there's something that might interest me?
A - After these «Questions and Answers», at the bottom of this page, there is a summary that helps to better understand the purpose of the site. The topics dealt with in the various sections are explained in the following answers.
Q - What is the section «life on earth» about?
A - The origins and evolution of the psychophysical instrument (the body and its brain) through which we live in this world, the way in which human social aggregations have formed and evolved, and the conditions in which complex societies (like the one we live in) activate the socio-cultural conditioning that contributes to shape our functioning and behavior.
Q - What is the section «the human psyche» about?
A - This section, perhaps the most important of the site, points out the current scientific knowledge about the functioning of the human brain, and considers how our sense of existence in this life depends on the conscious experience of a series of psychic events that are determined by mental (and therefore cerebral) activity, and of which we can preserve the memory. Our psychic experiences, however, are but a mere fraction of all the psychic events - including the creative ones - of which humanity can, as a whole, make experience, now or in the past. The complex of all these experiences is the evolving phenomenon defined as «human psyche». The reasons are also explained why it is more appropriate to consider the human brain as a tuning instrument - rather than a producer - of the psychic experience.
Q - What is the section «non-ordinary states» about?
A - The reading of this section is easy and enjoyable, accessible to everyone: it examines and exemplifies various psychic experiences that do not usually come to consciousness during the ordinary state of vigilance: in addition to the normal dreams and some particular categories of dreams, such as lucid dreams and conscious dreams, the out of the body experiences (OBEs) and the experiences induced by the assumption of some psychoactive substances are considered.
Q - What is the sectione «near death experiences» about?
A - This section too is easy to read: it offers several examples of psychic experiences that have occurred during a crisis that could have had a deadly outcome, although this has not happened. These are particular experiences, certainly uncommon, many of which refer to an OBE and an otherwordly dimension. Some points of view, regarding the correlation between this kind of experiences and the presumed functioning of the brain in the conditions in which they occurred, have also been evaluated.
Q - What is the sectione «psychic phenomena» about?
A - If's about various well-documented phenomena, investigated especially in the period between the end of the nineteenth century and the second world war, for most of which have not yet been found a satisfactory explanation that can agree with the physical laws we know. For this reason, there is still a tendency (of psychic origin) to deny the very existence of these phenomena. This section contains a series of pages related to the «History of a medium», where you can find interesting original reports on some relevant mediumistic phenomena occurred in a small Tuscan city between 1936 and 1952.
Q - What is the sectione «psychical research» about?
A - This section provides a partial outline, to be further integrated with new information and arguments, of the surveys carried out during a century and a half of investigations on paranormal phenomena and the main theories and hypotheses advanced by scholars to explain them.
Q - What is the sectione «over the life» about?
A - It considers the possibility that the conscious Ego of a person may continue to exist in other dimensions after the dissolution of the psychophysical system that makes her/him live in this world. Some assumptions concerning agents and supports that could make plausible some form of survival of the conscious Ego have been considered, together with the consequences that such an eventuality may have for our present life.
Q - What does the section «info & links» contain?
A - The site is updated on the basis of new information and further knowledge elements, with the aim of improving the topics covered and making them more complete and understandable. The Info page describes briefly the additions or variations of the site's sections or pages over time. On the Links page - also in the «info & links» section - information is provided on other sites where more specific topics are discussed, while on the Library page you can find some of the texts mentioned on the site.
Q - Why so many pages of the site are dedicated to NDEs and to mediumistic phenomena?
A - The reason is explained in detail in the «Human psyche» section: these are important psychical experiences, useful to highlight some inconsistencies in the cultural orientations currently prevailing in our society. According to these programs, the existence of the human being is considered almost exclusively in the service of social systems, which work to determine and exhaust the needs and energies of human life.
Q - Some topics interest me. In what order should the various pages be read?
A - The topics discussed are organized more or less like the chapters of a book, in which you can browse pages until you find something interesting to read with more attention. All the best was done to use a cool graphic with clear fonts, but good viewing also depends on the browser settings used by the computer or the tablet of the reader. The site should work well with Firefox, Google Chrome, Internet Explorer and Safari.
Q - The reading of some pages is challenging: could not they be simplified?
A - Although I did my best to be clear in the reasoning, the limits of linguistic communication (and also limits of my expressive skills) did not always allow me to treat in a simple and effective way what could be outside the range of personal experiences and cultural information of those who read. So there is a need for commitment if you want to understand, deepen or verify some of the topics you are reading.
Q - Why don't you tell us who you are and what's your job?
A - Apart from the fact that I was born in 1946, and therefore I have some experience of life, autobiographical news would not add anything meaningful or interesting to what I wrote on the site. I think it is important to emphasize - more than my subjective and partial human experience and the particular destiny that has determined my life - the universal and irrepressible desire for knowledge that acts in me as in so many other human beings.
Q - Does the site have many contacts?
A - So and so: in the last year contacts were over 15,000 (10% of which were interested readers). All in all, a positive result, considering that not all the topics dealt with are easy to understand, and reading some pages can be demanding.
To get an idea of the purpose of the various topics covered in the sections of this site, you can read the last page of the last section, entitled The meaning of human life and the liberation of the conscious Ego. It encloses in itself the idea that this life is a preparatory condition for the formation and evolution of the conscious Ego, so that it can continue to exist beyond the death of the body to experience other psychic dimensions. All the topics dealt with in this site are intended to present, in an intellectually honest, shared and documented way, the reasonable arguments that lead to this conclusion.
In order to better understand the meaning attributed to expressions such as «conscious Ego» and «human psyche» and terms such as consciousness, memory, intelligence, etc., it is advisable to read the Definitions page in the «human psyche» section. In any case, all the pages in this section should be read carefully, because they help to understand the difference between the conscious Ego and the psychic experiences the Ego is involved, as well as to initiate a path of detachment of the conscious Ego from the human psyche, in order to be able to evaluate the various psychic manifestations in a more equilibrated way. Bear in mind that in our culture the term psyche is often regarded as an equivalent of «mental activity», and the identification of the conscious Ego with the psychic experiences that involve it is taken for granted. This results in an excessive personalization of psychic experiences, as evidenced by the common and shallow use of expressions such as «my psyche» and «your psyche», which do not allow you to distinguish between the experimenting subject, the object of the experience and the power of involvement and domination exercised by the latter on the subject.
Since psychic experiences are determined by mental activity, and therefore by the functioning of the brain and the stimuli our psychophysical system receives both from the external environment and from within our body, the life on earth section presents a synthetic picture of the origin of the human body as part of the phenomenon that has led to the evolution of life on our planet. However our psychic experiences are largely determined by the programs that have been transmitted to us by the socio-cultural system in which we have been raised, and also by those with whom we must continually interact within the system that keeps us alive. So in the same section some pages are devoted to the cultural evolution of human societies, and to the differences between the simplest and mainly static societies, and the more complex ones. The influence of socio-cultural conditioning on mental activity and psychic experiences is further deepened in the section the human psyche.
In addition to psychic experiences that can be considered normal or ordinary, in the sense that almost all human beings can experience them as long as their brains work regularly and the necessary circumstances occur, there are other uncommon experiences that are discussed in the section non-ordinary states. It starts with dreams – which can be considered as normal psychic experiences (since almost every human being dreams and many people remember much of the dreams they have) – because during sleep some peculiar and uncommon psychic experiences may occur, such as lucid dreams, dreams that are indistinguishable from the reality of waking state, or body separations (OBEs). Some people have a special talent that allows them to easily access these experiences, which are precluded to the great majority of humans.
Among the uncommon psychic experiences, special emphasis is given to the NDEs, to which the near death exp. section is dedicated. The importance attributed to these experiences is due both to the fact that they seem to relate, at least in part, to a condition of separation of the conscious Ego from the physical body to which it is normally associated, and to the critical conditions in which could be the brain of the subject involved in the experience. Given that such conditions could also have the definitive death as a result, they are often referred to as «premortal experiences» or «experience at death point», but these are inaccurate expressions. Even the English expression «near death» is not particularly appropriate. Indeed, in most cases, the risk of death, when the experience occurs, really exists and can be high, although it is clear that people who experienced NDEs survived and recovered their mental faculties. However, in several cases, NDEs took place when the subject was in coma or presumed unconsciousness. The risk of death and the critical condition of subjects who have experienced the NDEs have led to these experiences being considered as testimonies of the survival of the conscious Ego to the death of the body: they certainly refer to a psychic dimension very different from the one that characterizes human life.
All the particular and uncommon psychic experiences dealt with in the «non-ordinary states» and «near death exp» sections are typically subjective, in the sense that there are no other witnesses that can validate them, in addition to the experimenting subject. Instead, in the psychic phenomena section, there are unusual psychic experiences that have undeniable objective features, as they are tested and witnessed by a plurality of subjects, and in some cases documented by recording devices. As an example, recordings of mediumistic sessions with direct voices can be downloaded and listened to on this page and in the next of the section dedicated to the history of a medium.
The objectivity of mediumistic phenomena, and more generally the assessment of the reality and authenticity of paranormal phenomena, has given rise to a field of study which, since the end of the nineteenth century, has been called «psychical research», «metapsychic» and finally with the actual most used term «parapsychology». Some guidelines on the orientation of these studies, the investigations carried out by Italian researchers, the results obtained and the advanced explanatory hypotheses are presented in the section psychical research.
The final section, over the life, presents the conclusions that can be reached at the end of this long and complex cognitive path, and also at the end of human life. The conscious Ego has formed, developed and evolved in this life, but all of its experiences are determined by the psychic tunes that involves it through mental activity. Most of these psychic experiences are determined by the needs of the human body, and – when they are not neutral – carry with them an emotional component that involves the Ego either negatively, through forms of distress and suffering, or positively, in terms of pleasure, enthusiasm and happiness. Some experiences involving a minority of human beings may reveal the possibility of existing in other dimensions, where the psychic tunes experimentable by the conscious Ego are more in accordance with the needs of his/her spiritual part.