Toward a postmaterialist psychology: Theory, research, and applications

Mario Beauregard, Natalie L. Trent, Gary E. Schwartz

Research output: Contribution to journalComment/debatepeer-review

5 Scopus citations

Abstract

The majority of mainstream psychologists still adopt a materialist stance toward nature. They believe that science is synonymous with materialism; further, they are convinced that the view that mind and consciousness are simply by-products of brain activity is an incontrovertible fact that has been demonstrated beyond reasonable doubt. This is an incomplete view of what humans are. In this article, we review two categories of empirical evidence that support a shift toward a postmaterialist psychology. The first category of evidence includes mental events that seem to occur outside the spatial confines of the brain, whereas the second category includes mental events that seem to occur when the brain has ceased to function. Taken together, the two bodies of empirical evidence examined here indicate that the idea that the brain creates mind and consciousness is both incomplete and flawed. In the Discussion section, we argue that the transmission hypothesis of the mind-brain relationship can account for all the evidence presented in this article. We also discuss the emerging postmaterialist paradigm and its potential implications for the evolution of psychology.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)21-33
Number of pages13
JournalNew Ideas in Psychology
Volume50
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 2018

Keywords

  • Consciousness
  • Mind-brain relationship
  • Postmaterialist paradigm
  • Psychology
  • Scientific materialism

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychology (miscellaneous)
  • Psychology(all)

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