Science and Nonduality Conference

Science and Nonduality Conference
Science and Nonduality Conference, October 20-25, 2010.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Less than one month away!!

It's that time again. The conference is less than 30 days away...

Get ready to ask your questions and share your insights!

This year we would like the conference to be more of an interactive playground where you get to engage directly with the speakers and explore your questions more deeply. To that end, we have several pre-conference workshops on Wednesday and Thursday. Then on Sunday afternoon we are exploring a new format with six different panels. Please see the complete program on our website. We hope this provides you with greater opportunities for dialogue and discussion.

We are also in the process of planning our second Anthology DVD of interviews with conference presenters. We would like your input on this!! Please let us know what are the burning questions you would like us to ask. Tell us what is important to you!

We look forward to hearing your feedback...

Maurizio & Zaya

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

A week of conference hopping...

In the past week Zaya and I went to attend our two “sister” conferences. It was a great week of learning and observing and our brain was stretched in many directions…

The first “Toward a Science of Consciousness” Conference was held 16 years ago (!!!) and the event is still a landmark in the academic studies of Consciousness. A feast for the scientific oriented brain! In these few days we heard very elaborate theories on how the brain works, heard scenarios of how Artificial Intelligence (AI++) will reach singularity point and intelligence far superior to human and all the foreseen and unforeseen implications of it. We heard about a thorough near death experiences research from Holland clearly indicating that consciousness is present even when the brain is not functioning… We heard great talks, saw amazing poster sessions and met many old friends, some of you we first met at our conference in San Rafael last October.

While meeting with these amazing scientists it become more and more apparent to us that the “new paradigm” of science is in full swing and that we need to anchor Consciousness as “primary” before we can possibly move any further.

“Psychedelic Science in the 21st century” was a totally different experience… We were enchanted by meeting such passion and dedication from scientists and activists attempting to change laws and common misperceptions about entheogen and their role as portals in understanding Consciousness and as crucial support in psychological and medical healing.

We felt extremely honored and proud to be part of that historical event and we highly recommend it to you for next year.
Needless to say also there we met many of you and look forward to seeing you again in October at SAND10.

At the two events we enrolled some new amazing speakers and with them our main program is almost complete.

BUT… we have kept space for you! Go to our website and post your abstract, your idea, your dream, your theory, your student thesis, your movement modality and allow us to give voice to your work. Remember, this is YOUR conference. Science and Nonduality 2010 needs you!
Without you we cannot be NOTHING!

Be an active part of the paradigm shift!
Post your abstract!
Love, Maurizio & Zaya.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

At the conference I remember some people being concerned that nonduality could be a very selfish and "indifferent" way of living...
Few days ago I read, don't remember where, a sentence that was so awesome I cannot take it out of my head...
"If your leg hurts your hand will go to the rescue without a though"...
To me that is a great way to define the "activist angle" of nonduality. If there are "no two" in this universe and a cell is experiencing pain there should be (there IS) an instinctive response toward helping relieving that pain...

Love, Maurizio

Monday, December 28, 2009

Preview videos from the 3 DVDs box set of the 2009 SAND conference

We are at the final leg of editing of the 3 DVD set we shot at the 2009 conference.
At the event we invited some of our speakers and interviewed them in front of a green screen.
We asked them few questions: What is nonduality? How does the “I” arise? Who is the doer? If everything is truly nothing, why do we perceive so much complexity? If everything is unfolding as it should, can we have free will? Is nondual awareness the end point for the evolution of consciousness?
What we've got it's a DVD meant to explore the convergence between science and nonduality.
Quite a piece... :-)
Each of the interviews is a stand alone piece that allows us to fully experience the depth of the speaker, a unique journey that ultimately brings us back to the source of all, beyond concepts and words.

Here are some links...
The web site page on our site:

Our new Youtube channel in which, in due time, we'll post a clip of EVERY speaker we had at the 2009 event ...but give us a bit more time for that...

So... happy new year (if you care)! :-)

Love, Maurizio

Monday, December 14, 2009

Next conference: SAND 2010

BEYOND THE “I”… the end of the seeker

Many of us have been “seeking” for most of our adult life. We have gone through many practices, spiritual paths and teachers only to discover that our pain and suffering did not disappear or even diminish.

It seems agreed upon by spiritual masters of all traditions that the main reason for our suffering is the identification with the “I” and the way to dissipate this pain is to merge with what is beyond the “I”, to merge the looker with what is looked at. Science, on the other hand, can help us to understand how we construct and experience the “I”, as well as the states beyond it.

At the next conference we will explore what moves us towards nondual awareness through science, music, movement, talks, and more.

Some of the topics we will explore are:

- Observing and experiencing how the “I” arises (Neuroscience, Psychology)
- Looking at the Macro (Cosmology) and the Micro (Biology, Quantum Theory) to reframe the “I” and give a different perspective and bring it “beyond”
- The collapse of concepts, identifications and models (Experiential)
- Glimpses of nondual awareness, no-state states beyond words and ideas (Satsang, Poetry, Art, Music and more...)

The general format:
Fri/Sat and Sunday morning and early afternoon we'll have 2 semi-plenary sessions (250 seats each) and then about 2 hrs a day of Plenary sessions from 4;30 to 6:30 pm. At this stage we foresee many of these semi-plenary sessions being hosted by specific organizations like: NDWP, MAPS, IONS, etc etc and the dialogue in each session will evolve on a topic we'll define in concert with them.
In the mornings, from 9 to 12:30, 3 smaller concurrent room will be running at the same time as the morning semi plenaries allowing more speakers to present their ideas and work.
Our objective is to design the program in a way that will allow you to choose a "specific path", a road, to follow from the morning to the evening. Our goal is to allow you to choose a more "scientifically" path or a more "experiential" path, a more "introductory" path or a more "advanced" one...
Movement modalities will be more integrated in the main program, poster sessions will be better featured and managed, evenings will be devoted to more participatory events. And yes... better coffee will be served!

Will we be able to accomplish these goals??? You'll tell us on October 26th... :-)

Count on our most sincere effort in providing you with the best possible SAND box and keep sending us your comments, suggestions, proposed speakers and opinions... we crave to hear your voices...

love, m

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Time to start dreaming SAND 2010...

what an adventure...
Last week, about a month after the conference ended, our bodies finally crushed and Zaya and I had to take a week off!!!
...a week off... what a concept... :-)
But it is now time to prepare for next year event... SAND 2010 is on the way.
A LOT of amazing new idea and suggestions came from your feedback and we listened to all of them very closely.
We heard your requests for less speakers, longer talks, more integration between talks and experiential, a science closer to our day to day experience and better coffee…

We’ll present again a wide variety of spiritual traditions, sciences and the arts being well aware that they are all pointers and each of these modalities could be the needed key for each and everyone of us to open the “door” to move us "beyond". As Nisargadatta said: “getting a thorn to help us remove another thorn”.

On this blog, on which I will now commit to write regularly (in my approximate English)... we'll keep you posted on the evolution of our planning and we'll welcome your further feedback to help us create the 2010 event. We crave your comments since we are well aware that there is only one element that is the key to a succesfull conference... YOU!

Stay tuned and help us creating an amazing SAND box in which our minds will be able to safely play and possibly, even for a brief moment disappear, letting the awareness of our unity with "it all" to become present...

Love, Maurizio

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Giordano Bruno’s Science of Nonduality

Giordano Bruno’s Science of Nonduality - submitted by Keith Turausky

For most Westerners—indeed, for most attendees of the upcoming Science and Nonduality Conference—the concept of metaphysical nonduality is associated with Eastern religion and/or the spirituality of “native peoples.” However, Western philosophy can in fact lay claim to a strong, if underappreciated, nondualist tradition of its ownone that also walks hand-in-hand with science.

Perhaps no thinker better epitomizes this tradition than Giordano Bruno (1548–1600), an excommunicated Italian monk whose radical philosophy earned him a death sentence from the Roman Inquisition. Ironically, the Catholic Encyclopedia provides perhaps the clearest summary of what might be called Bruno’s “science of nonduality.” Bruno taught that:

· * “God and the world are one;

· * matter and spirit, body and soul, are two phases of the same substance;

· * the universe is infinite;

· * beyond the visible world there is an infinity of other worlds, each of which is inhabited;

· * this terrestrial globe has a soul;

· * in fact, each and every part of it, mineral as well as plant and animal, is animated;

· * all matter is made up of the same elements (no distinction between terrestrial and celestial matter)…”

The recalcitrant Bruno was ultimately burned at the stake for (among other things) the “theological error” of claiming “that the Holy Ghost is the soul of the world”—or, as he himself wrote in De magia, “every soul and spirit hath a certain continuity with the spirit of the universe…. The power of each soul is itself somehow present afar in the universe [and is] exceedingly connected and attached thereto.”

Notably, this “soul and spirit” were not metaphysically distinct from the universe—that is, Bruno did not argue for Cartesian-style substance dualism. Rather, he believed in monistic matter that expressed itself in two ways: potenza (power) and soggetto (subjectivity), the physical and the mental. And just as the physical and the mental were two sides of one coin, likewise, in Bruno’s view, there could be no real separation of man (or matter) from God.

Bruno’s cosmology was influenced by thinkers from Epicurus to Copernicus, and his ideas were picked up in turn by such luminaries as Spinoza and Goethe. Though he knew no calculus—it wouldn’t be invented for another hundred years—Bruno’s argument for an infinite, relativistic universe full of earthlike planets could have come straight from the 20th century, and has even been called a forerunner of quantum multiverse theory!

Appropriately, a statue of Giordano Bruno now stands near the Vatican at the site of his public execution, erected by modern students in solemn tribute to his unique and lasting vision. This October in San Rafael at the Science and Nonduality Conference, we may feel fortunate to freely and enthusiastically engage in the sort of speculation that once, in the West, doomed freethinkers like Bruno.