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BIAL Foundation
TI:"Immersion, absorption, and spiritual experience: Some preliminary findings"
Selection Description
Type Title Begin End
DocumentImmersion, absorption, and spiritual experience: Some preliminary findings2020

Reference code: PT/FB
Entity holding: BIAL Foundation
Location: S. Mamede do Coronado
BIAL Foundation Archive
Start date: 1994
The BIAL Foundation was created in 1994 by Laboratórios BIAL in conjunction with the Council of Rectors of Portuguese Universities. BIAL’s Foundation mission is to foster the scientific study of Man from both the physical and spiritual perspectives.
Along the years the BIAL Foundation has developed an important relationship with the scientific community, first in Portugal and after worldwide. Today it is an institution of reference which aims to stimulate new researches that may help people, promote more health and contribute to new milestones to gain access to knowledge.
Among its activities the BIAL Foundation manages the BIAL Award, created in 1984, one of the most important awards in the Health field in Europe. The BIAL Award rewards both the basic and the clinical research distinguishing works of major impact in medical research.
The BIAL Foundation also assigns Scientific Research Scholarships for the study of neurophysiological and mental health in people, arousing the interest of researchers in the areas of Psychophysiology and Parapsychology.
To date the BIAL Foundation has supported 461 projects, more than 1000 researchers, with research groups in twenty-seven countries, resulting, until April 2013, in about 600 full papers, out of which 172 published in indexed international journals with an average impact factor of 3.6 and a substantial number of citations (1665).
Since 1996 the BIAL Foundation organizes the Symposia entitled "Behind and Beyond the Brain", a Forum that gathers well renowned neurosciences speakers and the BIAL Foundation Fellows which are spread around the world.
Classified as an institution of public utility, the BIAL Foundation includes among its patrons the Portuguese President, the Portuguese Universities Rectors' Council and the Portuguese Medical Association.
Accessibility: By permission

Reference code: PT/FB/BL
Entity holding: BIAL Foundation
Title: BIAL Grants
Start date: 1994
In 1994 the BIAL Foundation launched a programme of science research grants with the aim of encouraging the research into Man’s physical and mental processes, namely in fields still largely unexplored but which warrant further scientific analysis, as Psychophysiology and Parapsychology.
Since its launch, applications to the BIAL grants have been increasing. Up to now 461 projects have been supported, involving more than 1000 researchers from 27 countries.
The approved applications have benefited from grants in amounts comprised between €5,000 and €50, 000. The amount to be granted is fixed by the Scientific board according to the needs of each project.
The supported projects have originated, until April 2013, in about 600 full papers, 172 out of which were published in indexed international journals with an average impact factor of 3.6 and a substantial number of citations (1665).
Among the BIAL Foundation fellows is worth highlighting the presence of scientists from prestigious universities from the United States, United Kingdom, Australia, Russia, Germany, Japan, France, Canada, and many others.
The BIAL grants are promoted biannually.

Reference code: PT/FB/BL-2014
Location: BF-GMS
2014 Grants
Start date: 2015-01

Reference code: PT/FB/BL-2014-228
Location: BF-GMS
228 - Pushing consciousness and selfhood towards their boundaries - An EEG neurophenomenological study
Duration: 2015-02 - 2019-03
Joseph Glicksohn, Aviva Berkovich-Ohana, Tal Dotan Ben-Soussan
Institution(s): Bar-Ilan University, Ramat Gan (Israel); Fondazione Patrizio Paoletti, Assisi (Italy)
Contents: Contents:
Bursary agreement
Application form
Progress reports
Final report
4 papers
Language: eng
Glicksohn, J.
Secondary author(s):
Berkovich-Ohana, A., Ben-Soussan, T.
Number of reproductions:
Consciousness / Self / Perceptual Deprivation / EEG / Psychophysiology and Parapsychology

Reference code: PT/FB/BL-2014-228.08
Location: BF-GMS
Immersion, absorption, and spiritual experience: Some preliminary findings
Publication year: 2020
Abstract/Results: ABSTRACT:
Many traditions have utilized silent environments to induce altered states of consciousness and spiritual experiences. Neurocognitive explorations of spiritual experience can aid in understanding the underlying mechanism, but these are surprisingly rare. We present the verbal report and the electroencephalographic (EEG) alpha profile of a female participant scoring a maximal 34 on the Absorption Scale, recorded before and while she was immersed in a whole-body perceptual deprivation (WBPD) tank. We analyze her trancelike experience in terms of the imagery reported: a spaceship, corridors, doors, a man dressed in white, speaking to God, the sun, supernova, concentric images, and an out-of-body experience. Her report is indicative of a spiritual experience, given that she felt that she was “meeting God” in the laboratory. She exhibited both frontal and parietal left > right alpha power asymmetry at baseline, whereas in the WBPD condition, there was a global increase in alpha power and especially a sharp increase in right-frontal alpha power. Her verbal report and EEG alpha profile were compared to those of another female participant, also scoring high on absorption, whose verbal report was also indicative of a trancelike experience. For further comparison, we present the data for two participants scoring low on absorption. Spiritual experience that can be verbalized might be associated with a marked increase in right-frontal alpha power, as reported here. In contrast, a mystical experience characterized by ineffability would be indicated by a marked increase in left-frontal alpha power.
Accessibility: Document exists in file
Glicksohn, J.
Secondary author(s):
Ben-Soussan, T. D.
Document type:
Number of reproductions:
Glicksohn, J., & Ben-Soussan, T. D. (2020). Immersion, absorption, and spiritual experience: Some preliminary findings. Frontiers in Psychology, 11: 2118.
2-year Impact Factor: 2.990|2020
Times cited: 9|2024-02-13
Indexed document: Yes
Quartile: Q2
Keywords: Spiritual experience / Mystical experience / Electroencephalogram (EEG) / Alpha / Absorption

Immersion, absorption, and spiritual experience: Some preliminary findings

Immersion, absorption, and spiritual experience: Some preliminary findings