The malleable self: transforming bodily self consciousness
The malleable self: transforming bodily self consciousness through multisensory stimulation
Have you wondered how it feels to lose your body, to step out of your own perspective or feel dissociated from your own hand? Imagine feeling a fake hand as if it was your own, or embodying another person’s auditory universe. Would it be possible to hack your perception of your own body?
Embedded within us lies a remarkable capacity to experience altered states of consciousness. Our sense of body is an important constituent of our conscious state that requires the constant integration of multisensory bodily and surrounding signals to maintain its functionality and a stable sense of self. Nevertheless, it also requires a high level of plasticity in order to adapt to changes of our body figure, learned or restricted movements, and surroundings. An epiphenomena of this embedded malleability is that it allows us to hack our bodily self-consciousness through the use of conflicting multisensory signals.
This workshop will explore the theoretical foundations of bodily self plasticity and allow participants to have a hands-on experience of altered states of bodily self consciousness through traditional bodily illusion paradigms as well as newly developed virtual reality and auditory-based procedures. Out of body experiences, rubber hand illusions, mirror boxes and augmented reality will help us to phenomenologically deconstruct the assumptions that we may have about bodily self consciousness.
About Prof. Dr. Bigna Lenggenhager
Bigna Lenggenhager is head of the research group Cognitive Neuropsychology with focus Body, Self and Plasticity at the University of Zurich. Her work focuses on the empirical investigation of multisensory integration mechanisms, the bodily self and embodied cognition in health and disease. For her research she combines methods from psychology, neuroscience and virtual reality.
About Helena Aicher
Helena Aicher is a doctoral researcher in Psychology conducting a study at the Department for Cognitive Neuropsychology with focus Body, Self and Plasticity at the University of Zurich on disembodiment and mood. As a member of the reconnect foundation, she aims at integrating research on altered states of consciousness for the development of novel psychotherapy approaches.
About Marte Roel
Marte Roel is a doctoral researcher in Cognitive Neuropsychology with focus Body, Self and Plasticity at the University of Zurich and a founding member of the action-research collective BeAnotherLab. His work lies in the convergence of art and science, focusing on the phenomenological, psychological, epistemological and social implications of the remarkable plasticity of our somatic experience.
Event in the MIND Academy’s Forum Bewusstseinskultur
The Forum Bewusstseinskultur includes events that address a general public. Usually there is no or low requirement for technical terminology. The Forum Bewusstseinskultur strives for connecting science and culture. We seek to establish an evidence-based culture of consciousness. The Forum Bewusstseinskultur integrates first and third person perspectives on consciousness and particularly the psychedelic experience. Click HERE for more information about the MIND Academy and its four different tracks.
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Academy of the MIND Foundation