Friday, January 19, 2007

Michael Jawer on

The Science and Consciousness Review is featuring an article written by Michael Jawer. I've been personally interested in Jawer's work since he came into the scene a few years ago. In addition to being an independent researcher and director of the Emotion Gateway Research Center, Jawer is an employee of the U.S. General Services Administration. Previously, he worked for the government investigating the 'sick building syndrome' and multiple chemical sensitivities, among other issues. It was part of his job to prepare indoor quality guidance for office building owners and managers.

In the course of that work, Jawer had occasion to speak to people who considered themselves to be suffering from environmental sensitivities and who also reported apparitions and other seemingly paranormal perceptual experiences. As he conducted his research, Jawer began to suspect that a range of odd sensitivities could stem from a common neurobiological foundations. The central thesis of his work is that people who commonly report longstanding allergies, chronic pain and fatigue, depression, migraine headaches, or sensitivity to light, sound, and smell constitute a ‘sensitive’ personality type, and such people are more likely to report anomalous experiences.

I find his thesis both personally and professionally interesting. Being asthmatic and suffering from multiple food allergies (among other things), I find that I conform to his sensitive personality type. And once I get my current study under way, I might be interested in replicating his work...or at the very least, incorporating it into my field research on hauntings.

The article at demonstrates public scholarship at it's very best. After reading about his latest study in plain English, you can find a links to the papers that he references. Kudos to Michael Jawer and for their efforts.

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