There is no other book that pulls together so much psychological research and theory on anomalous experiences. It is amazing how much we know about these unusual experiences from scientific research, yet they still hold mysteries for us.
Arthur Hastings, Institute of Transpersonal Psychology, Palo Alto, CA
George Bernard Shaw defined a miracle as "an event which creates faith." The Varieties of Anarnalous Experience is miraculous because it succeeds in examining anomalous events from a rigorous, open-minded, scientific perspective. The book deserves its consciously positioned place in the tradition of William James's objective analysis of the subjective. Modern psychology has been a bit like the perron who looks for his lost keys under the lamp post because the light is better there, first focusing on behavior, then cognition, then emotion. Cardera, Lynn, and Krippner have provided a powerful flashlight to expand the territory to be explored for the key to experiences that challenge our power to explain.
David Spiegel, MD, Professor and Associate Chair of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Stanford University Schoot of Medicine, Stanford, CA
Sons and heirs of William James, the editors and contributors to Varieties of Anomalous Experience survey a fascinating range of reports. From hallucinatory experiences and synesthesia to anomalous healing and mystical experiences, from lucid dreaming and out-of-body experiences to past-life and near-death experiences, and more, they focus on phenomenological accounts and consider appropriate methods of research. At each turn, they raise challenging questions, clearing the ground for future systematic studies. A valuable summing up and a promising beginning.
Erika Bourguignon, Department of Anthropology, Ohio State University, Columbus
Varieties of f Anomalous Experience closes a long-felt gap between those who insist that anomalous experiences are exceptions to the "general rule," when in the meantime overwhelming evidence is accumulated that proves that "so-called anomalies" require a wider frame of reference. Etzel Cardena, Steven Jay Lynn, and Stanley Krippner have accepted the challenge and, with the help of internationally well-known scholars, have compiled strong evidence that aluminates the conceptual nature of anomalies. The language of this book is clear and convincing. Also of great help is that each contribution is followed by an extensive List of references. This book is a welcome addition to our knowledge of anomalous phenomena. It deserves to become required reading in each psychology department. It is also highly readable to the general public.
Ruth-Inge Heinze, PhD, Psychological Anthropology and Comparative Religion, Cerner for Southeast Asia Studies, University of California, Berkeley, and author of Trance and Healing in Southeast Asia Today (White Lotus, 1997, rev. ed.)
As psychologies, we want to have complete knowledge, but as human beings, subject to fashion and peer pressuré, it's easy to slip into a conventional mindset that ignores important phenomena that don't easily fit. Yet in many fields of science, it was the long ignored anomalies that eventually opened up major advances. This excellent book marks a major growth step for our profession!
Charles Tart, PhD, Professor, Institute of Transpersonal Psychology, Berkeley, CA, and editor of Altered States of Consciousness (Wiley, 1969) and Transpersonal Psychologies (Harper & Row, 1975)