Neuroscience of Consciousness Symposium

UPDATE: We're moving forward with the event. We think this is a very important event and we are still actively fundraising!

It's time for a revolution in neuroscience. We are two neuroscientists who want to encourage curiosity and exploration of all aspects of the human experience, even those we cannot currently fully explain with science.

Key Points:

  • We are looking for sponsors to cover A/V, printing costs, room/board for our 600 person event -- a symposium of this caliber requires significant resources!
  • Your sponsorship helps cover essential logistical costs but also enhances the overall quality of the event, ensuring that it reaches a wider and engaged audience.
  • We want to help propel the paradigm shift in science by organizing a symposium on alternative models of consciousness at the largest annual neuroscience conference.
  • Based on the Neuroscience and Spirituality event we organized last year, there are many more neuroscientists interested in the bigger questions and we'd like to connect with them -- this event will seat 600 people.

Last year, at the largest neuroscience conference (Society for Neuroscience) we organized a Neuroscience & Spirituality Social to explore this topic, expecting not many scientists to show up. To our great surprise, 50+ scientists showed up, engaging enthusiastically about wide-ranging topics, such as consciousness, psychedelics, anomalous experiences, and spirituality -- topics that are usually too taboo to discuss openly with our colleagues. Given all the interest we received, we’d love to expand on that this year at the conference again by organizing a symposium: A Revolution in Neuroscience: Alternative Models of Consciousness (see full description below).

Date/Time: Saturday, November 11th, 6:30pm - 10:00pm
Location: Westin Downtown DC Hotel (Potomac Salon 1)
Title: A Revolution in Neuroscience: Alternative Models of Consciousness
Speakers + Discussion:

Christof Koch, PhD (Allen Institute of Brain Sciences; in-person; Discussion)
Bernardo Kastrup, PhD (Essentia Foundation; remote; Speaking + Discussion)
Donald Hoffman, PhD (UC Irvine, Dept of Cognitive Sciences; remote; Speaking + Discussion)
Julia Mossbridge, PhD (U. San Diego, Dept of Physics and Biophysics; in-person; Speaking + Discussion)
Jonathan Schooler, PhD (UCSB, Dept of Psychological & Brain Sciences; remote; Speaking + Discussion)
Allison Paradise (The Epicenter; in-person; Speaking + Discussion)
Mona Sobhani, PhD (Exploring Consciousness; in-person; Speaking + Discussion)

Description: Consciousness remains one of the greatest mysteries of science. Despite decades of research and theory, consciousness researchers are far from closing the gap between neurons and phenomenological experience with a widely-accepted theory. While the dominant theory in neuroscience proposes that consciousness arises from the brain, the past few years have seen alternative theories based on experimental evidence being published in scientific journals – including the idea that consciousness is fundamental. This symposium will present an array of alternative theories of consciousness and the brain, and include group discussion about possible alternative mechanisms.
Event Format: 10 min talks , panel discussion, audience questions.

Why a GoFundMe? Organizing these events is very expensive! The two of us don't have funds for this important gathering (of ~600 people). We get a free event room, but have to pay for A/V (at least $10,000), printing costs, and room/board.

We've sparked so much interest and conversation since last year and would love to keep the momentum going so that we can finally explain the unexplainable with science. Please consider donating so we can get more scientists interested in the greater mysteries. =)

More about us: We are Mona Sobhani, PhD and Allison Paradise, two neuroscientists who founded a collective for scientists interested in questions about the nature of our reality and consciousness. We want to encourage curiosity and exploration of all aspects of the human experience, even those we cannot currently fully explain with science (like mystical experiences, near-death experiences, etc). By sharing our own stories in multiple ways (e.g. through interviews, one of us wrote a book, events, etc), we hope to inspire other scientists to do the same.

Can't donate? Other ways you can help:

Share to your social media networks instead, please! Tag us!!! --> Linkedin: Allison Paradise, Mona Sobhani; Twitter: @monasobhaniphd; Instagram: @monasobhani_phd
  • Know of a company that wants to get in front of a few hundred (neuro)scientists? Introduce us, please! We are looking for corporate sponsors. (Think: MRI, EEG, surveys, meditation, psychedelics, etc). Contact us on our website:

Donations (49)

  • Anonymous
    • $10 
    • 19 d
    • $25 
    • 22 d
  • Adhikarimayum Khagemba
    • $10 
    • 23 d
  • James Celentano
    • $50 
    • 23 d
  • Anonymous
    • $20 
    • 24 d


Mona Sobhani
Washington D.C., DC

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