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Metaphysics & Psychology

Bigelow Institute unveils $1M life after death essay prize winners

By T.K. Randall
November 8, 2021 · Comment icon 48 comments

The winning essays have been revealed. Image Credit: NASA / Bill Ingalls
Robert Bigelow had launched the contest in an effort to find the best evidence of life after death.
Back at the beginning of this year, the Bigelow Aerospace founder, who has often expressed an interest in the UFO phenomenon and whose influence saw the initiation of the Advanced Aerospace Threat Identification Program (AATIP), launched a competition with the goal of finding evidence of what happens to us after we die.

Launched through the Bigelow Institute for Consciousness Studies, the contest aimed to encourage scientists, philosophers and other thinkers to pen essays laying down the case for life after death.

$500,000 was to be given to the essay that provided the best evidence of "the survival of consciousness after permanent bodily death", while lesser prizes of $300,000 and $150,000 were available to the second and third place winners.

Fast-forward ten months and the competition has now concluded, with the winners listed on the institute's website.

The $500,000 prize went to Jeffrey Mishlove, PhD for his essay entitled "Beyond the Brain: The Survival of Human Consciousness after Permanent Bodily Death."
Pim van Lommel M.D. picked up the $300,000 prize for his essay entitled "The Continuity of Consciousness: A Concept Based on Scientific Research on Near-Death Experiences During Cardiac Arrest", while the $150,000 went to Leo Ruickbie, PhD whose essay was entitled "The Ghost in the Time Machine."

A number of additional, smaller prizes were also handed out to the runners-up.

"BICS will publish all 29 essays on the BICS website in the next two weeks," a statement on the website reads.

"In a separate publication venture, BICS intends to publish the essays in a set of 5-6 volumes comprising all 29 winning essays. Each volume will be hard cover, richly bound in faux leather with gilted pages and ribbons."

"BICS will distribute these 'collector's items' sets of books free of charge to university libraries, hospices and to some religious institutions."

"The intent is to make available this group of 29 essays to as large a group of people as possible.

Source: Bigelow Institute | Comments (48)

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Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #39 Posted by Timothy 3 years ago
Must have been some F1 in the news that week…
Comment icon #40 Posted by Pettytalk 3 years ago
I'm thinking, and I'm conscious that this topic could be the hottest, unexplained mystery to remain unexplained on unexplained mystery. How can I be sure? How can anyone be sure in a world that is constantly changing? Whenever I really want to know, I mean really, really know, I really read Plato. Because REALITY never changes, it is what it is. And it IS, and will forever be an eternal IS. Because there never was, nor will ever be anything other than IS.  Reality is reality. Consciousness? Consciousness is knowing, a knowing of oneself. Therefore let us be conscious of the true meaning of an... [More]
Comment icon #41 Posted by Tom1200 3 years ago
Yet this bloke won half a million dollars for what he wrote!  Proof indeed that life's not fair (and death probably less so). 'Doctor' Mishmash's winning essay starts abysmally and just keeps getting worse.  Every new 'conclusion' is based on the acceptance that all previous speculation is proven, whereas nothing he writes has been (or even can be) verified.  Here's from page 7: "There is only one reasonable way to account for this event, the most earthshaking and unforgettable of my young life. Uncle Harry actually visited me in a dream when he died. Extrasensory perception alone doesn’t... [More]
Comment icon #42 Posted by Pettytalk 3 years ago
BICS has assembled a competent board of directors with deep experience in the topic to provide advice on the strategic direction and priorities of the Institute. The board of directors are: Robert T. Bigelow, BICS Founder Christopher C. Green M.D., Ph.D, Physician in Private and Governmental Forensic Neurology Leslie Kean, Journalist and Author Colm A Kelleher Ph.D, Molecular Biologist and Anomalies Researcher Jeffrey J Kripal Ph.D, Rice University Professor of Philosophy and Religious Thought Harold Puthoff Ph.D, Theoretical Physicist Jessica Utts Ph.D, Professor Emerita of Statistics UC Irvi... [More]
Comment icon #43 Posted by IronGhost 3 years ago
Whatever the case, I was thrilled that Jeffrey Mishlove won first place. I've been a huge fan for two decades ever  since he had his "Thinking Allowed" show on PBS and now has rebooted it with "New Thinking Allowed" on YouTube.  Mishlove also wrote one of the most influential and compelling books on a paranormal topic ever -- "The PK Man." It details his 10-year study of Ted Owens, the telekinesis guy.     
Comment icon #44 Posted by Saru 3 years ago
All 29 of the winning essays are now available to view online: https://www.bigelowinstitute.org/contest_winners3.php Should make for some interesting reading.
Comment icon #45 Posted by okispider 3 years ago
just watch Unexplained Caught on Camera on TV....you will see proof of life after death
Comment icon #46 Posted by fred_mc 3 years ago
Yes, we know that our instruments can't detect everything that exists. For example, most scientists agree on that dark matter exists, and that there is much more of it than normal matter. However, so far, nobody has been able to make an instrument to detect dark matter since it interacts very little with normal matter.
Comment icon #47 Posted by papageorge1 3 years ago
I'm thinking the key is that this matter is in dimensions (4th, 5th, ......) beyond the directly detectable three-dimensions of our physical senses and instruments. 
Comment icon #48 Posted by Liquid Gardens 3 years ago
It's 'quite' possible also that that we exist only as characters in a role-playing game with no soul at all, just computation, driving 'us'.  Or that we all exist only as figments of Gandalf's imagination.  There are many possibilities that can be dreamed up and I'm not mentioning these to mock the idea that there is a soul driving our bodies, I'm just pointing out that the soul possibility has the same issue as the one where we only exist as rpg characters, no evidence, so I'm not sure how one idea can be more reasonable or feasible or possible than another. I'm not sure what is needed eith... [More]

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