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The Biology of Transcendence

A Blueprint of the Human Spirit
Paperback Book
Inner Traditions
September, 2004
In stock now: 
$19.95 CAD
Banyen's Description: 

Here Joseph Chilton Pearce, author of Magical Child, examines the current biological understanding of our neural organization to address how we can transcend our current evolutionary capacities and limitations. This latest research identifies our five neural centres—or brains—and establishes that our fourth and most recently developed brain is located in the head while the fifth is located in the heart. It is the dynamic interaction of this head brain (intellect) and heart brain (intelligence), of biology and spirit, that allows transcendence from one evolutionary place to the next. In other words, we are quite literally made to transcend. Conversely, it is the breakdown of this interaction through the effects of cultural dictates surrounding us from the time we are children that keeps us where we are, mired in the current crises of violence among people and between people and the planet.

As a mature followup to his seminal book, The Crack in the Cosmic Egg, published in 1970, The Biology of Transcendence explores the idea of Jesus, Buddha, and other historical great beings as models of nature’s possibility, “nature’s new mind.”

[This book] revolves around the insights gleaned from the research of this new cadre of biologists and neuroscientists and from the ideals and behaviors modeled for us by the great beings of our history—specifically by, in my opinion, the greatest model of all, Jesus. An odd couple to find between the covers of the same book, you might think—Jesus and the new biologist. But if we drop the mythical and/or religious projections surrounding Jesus, we will discover a common ground…. If we lift the symbol of the cross from its mythical shroud of state-religion and biblical fairy-tale—which is to say, if we can rescue Jesus from the Christians—then the cross proves to be the “crack” in our cultural cosmic egg. It is toward this crack that this book points. May it throw more light and help us to open ourselves to nature’s new mind, wherein our true survival lies.

Publisher’s Description: 

Uses new research about the brain to explore how we can transcend our current physical and cultural limitations
Reveals that transcendence of current modes of existence requires the dynamic interaction of our fourth and fifth brains (intellect and intelligence)
Explores the idea that Jesus, Lao-tzu, and other great beings in history are models of nature’s possibility and our ability to achieve transcendence
17,000 sold in hardcover since April 2002
Why do we seem stuck in a culture of violence and injustice? How is it that we can recognize the transcendent ideal represented by figures such as Jesus, Lao-tzu, and many others who have walked among us and yet not seem to reach the same state?
In The Biology of Transcendence Joseph Chilton Pearce examines the current biological understanding of our neural organization to address how we can go beyond the limitations and constraints of our current capacities of body and mind, how we can transcend. Recent research in the neurosciences and neurocardiology identifies the four neural centers of our brain and indicates that a fifth such center is located in the heart. This research reveals that the evolutionary structure of our brain and its dynamic interactions with our heart are designed by nature to reach beyond our current evolutionary capacities. We are quite literally, made to transcend.
Pearce explores how this biological imperative drives our life into ever-greater realms of being, even as the cultural imperative of social conformity and behavior counters this genetic heritage, blocks our transcendent capacities, and breeds violence in all its forms. The conflict between religion and spirit is animportant part of this struggle. But each of us may overthrow these cultural imperatives to reach unconflicted behavior

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