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Jonathan Shear
Virginia Commonwealth University
  1.  12
    The View From Within: First-Person Approaches to the Study of Consciousness.Jonathan Shear & Francisco J. Varela (eds.) - 1999 - Imprint Academic.
    The study of conscious experience per se has not kept pace with the dramatic advances in PET, fMRI and other brain-scanning technologies. If anything, the standard approaches to examining the 'view from within' involve little more than cataloguing its readily accessible components. Thus the study of lived subjective experience is still at the level of Aristotelian science, leading to a widespread scepticism over the possibility of a truly scientific study of conscious experience. Drawing on a wide range of approaches -- (...)
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  2.  89
    Explaining Consciousness: The Hard Problem.Jonathan Shear (ed.) - 1997 - MIT Press.
    In this book philosophers, physicists, psychologists, neurophysiologists, computer scientists, and others address this central topic in the growing discipline..
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  3. First-Person Methodologies: What, Why, How?Francisco Varela & Jonathan Shear - 1999 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 6 (2-3):1-14.
  4. Focused Attention, Open Monitoring and Automatic Self-Transcending: Categories to Organize Meditations From Vedic, Buddhist and Chinese Traditions.Fred Travis & Jonathan Shear - 2010 - Consciousness and Cognition 19 (4):1110--1118.
    This paper proposes a third meditation-category—automatic self-transcending— to extend the dichotomy of focused attention and open monitoring proposed by Lutz. Automaticself-transcending includes techniques designed to transcend their own activity. This contrasts with focused attention, which keeps attention focused on an object; and open monitoring, which keeps attention involved in the monitoring process. Each category was assigned EEG bands, based on reported brain patterns during mental tasks, and meditations were categorized based on their reported EEG. Focused attention, characterized by beta/gamma activity, (...)
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  5. Peer Commentary and Responses 307.Francisco Varela & Jonathan Shear - 1999 - In J. Shear & Francisco J. Varela (eds.), The View From Within: First-Person Approaches to the Study of Consciousness. Imprint Academic. pp. 6--2.
     
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  6. Eastern Methods for Investigating Mind and Consciousness.Jonathan Shear - 2007 - In Max Velmans & Susan Schneider (eds.), The Blackwell Companion to Consciousness. Blackwell. pp. 697--710.
  7.  39
    Reply to Josipovic: Duality and Non-Duality in Meditation Research.Frederick Travis & Jonathan Shear - 2010 - Consciousness and Cognition 19 (4):1122--1123.
    We agree with Josipovic that a fundamental differentiating feature of meditation techniques is whether they remain within the dualistic subject–object cognitive structure, or they transcend this structure to reveal an underlying level of non-dual awareness. Further discussion is needed to delineate the basic non-dual experience in meditation, where all phenomenal content is absent, from the more advanced experience of non-duality in daily life, where phenomenal content is obviously present as well. In this discussion, it is important to recognize that the (...)
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  8.  29
    The Hard Problem: Closing the Empirical Gap.Jonathan Shear - 1996 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 3 (1):54-68.
    It stands to reason that full understanding of what is involved in the ‘hard problem’ will emerge only on the basis of systematic scientific investigation of the subjective phenomena of consciousness, as well as the objective phenomena of matter. Yet the idea of such a systematic scientific investigation of the subjective phenomena of consciousness has largely been absent from discussions of the ‘hard problem’. This is due, apparently, both to philosophical objections to the possibility of such a science of consciousness, (...)
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  9.  42
    Experiential Clarification of the Problem of Self.Jonathan Shear - 2002 - In Shaun Gallagher & Jonathan Shear (eds.), Journal of Consciousness Studies. Thorverton Uk: Imprint Academic. pp. 5-6.
    This paper presents the pure consciousness theory of self, derived from Eastern meditation traditions, and uses it to unravel some of the paradoxes of Western philosophical models of the self. The theory is ontologically neutral and compatible with the widest variety of different ontologies. However the theory does, I think, have significant implications for questions of personal identity, emotional maturity and moral values, but exploring these topics here would take us too far afield. The article attempts to show something of (...)
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  10.  7
    The Inner Dimension: Philosophy and the Experience of Consciousness.Jonathan Shear - 2014 - Harmonia Books.
    "The Inner Dimension" examines the philosophical significance of a remarkable family of experiences central to Eastern philosophical and meditation traditions, and reported by creative geniuses in the West from Plato through Einstein. Empirical research on ordinary people practicing traditional Eastern meditation techniques now indicates that these otherwise rarely encountered experiences actually reflect widely accessible universal potentials of ordinary human awareness. The "Inner Dimension" responds to this research by exploring the significance of these experiences for a wide range of philosophical issues (...)
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  11.  62
    The Experience of Pure Consciousness: A New Perspective for Theories of Self.Jonathan Shear - 1983 - Metaphilosophy 14 (January):53-62.
  12.  36
    Mystical Experience, Hermeneutics, and Rationality.Jonathan Shear - 1990 - International Philosophical Quarterly 30 (4):391-401.
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  13.  22
    Editor's Response.Jonathan Shear - 1999 - Metascience 8 (3):441-443.
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  14.  63
    Mysticism and Scientific Naturalism.Jonathan Shear - 2004 - Sophia 43 (1):83-99.
    How, from a scientific standpoint, should we understand mystical experiences? On the one hand such experiences are obviously capable of being studied scientifically. Nevertheless there is a sense in which such experiences often seem strongly opposed to our ordinary scientific views of reality, for they often seem to point to a domain quite outside that examined by naturalistic empirical science. Indeed, this is often precisely what seems to be ‘mystical’ about them. The present essay takes a hard look at specific (...)
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  15.  18
    Editors' Rejoinder to the Debate.F. J. Varela & Jonathan Shear - 1999 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 6 (2-3):2-3.
    Response to the Commentary on ‘The View from Within’ The numerous commentators to this Special Issue have greatly enhanced its focus and usefulness. We thank them all very sincerely for their efforts. Within the restricted space of this rejoinder we cannot respond in detail to all the issues raised. Instead, we shall concentrate first on some fundamental criticisms.The remaining additions and complementary ideas will only be touched on briefly, merely to see them in perspective. We shall start with our two (...)
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  16.  13
    Models of the Self: Editors' Introduction.Shaun Gallagher & Jonathan Shear - 1997 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 4 (5-6):5-6.
    There is a long history of inquiry about human nature and the nature of the self. It stretches from the ancient tradition of Socratic self-knowledge in the context of ethical life to contemporary discussions of brain function in cognitive science. At the beginning of the modern era, Descartes was led to the conclusion that self-knowledge provided the single Archimedean point for all knowledge. His thesis that self is a single, simple, continuing, and unproblematically accessible mental substance resonated with common sense, (...)
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  17.  9
    Reply to Nixon on Meditation.Jonathan Shear - 1999 - In J. Shear & Francisco J. Varela (eds.), The View From Within: First-Person Approaches to the Study of Consciousness. Imprint Academic. pp. 267.
  18.  35
    Going Outside the System: Gödel and the “I-It” Structure of Experience.Jonathan Shear & Neil Sims - 2018 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 25 (5-6):179-201.
    It has often been argued that Gödel’s first incompleteness theorem has major implications for our understanding of the human mind. Gödel himself hoped that the results of his theorem, combined with Turning’s work on computers and phenomenological analysis, would establish that the human mind contains an element totally different from a finite combinatorial mechanism. Decades of attempts to establish this by reasoning about Gödel’s theorem and Turing’s work are now widely taken to be unsuccessful. The present article, in accord with (...)
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