PASSING OF DR JOHN MACK

Announcement To Friends And Colleagues


This is preliminary information; further information will be posted to www.johnemackinstitute.org

Passing Of Dr John Mack: Announcement To Friends And Colleagues

At this time we must with great sorrow confirm that Dr John Mack has passed away in London, England.

Dr Mack was one of several speakers discussing British officer T.E. Lawrence ("Lawrence of Arabia") at the T. E. Lawrence Society Symposium, Oxford. Dr Mack's 1977 biography of T.E. Lawrence, A Prince of Our Disorder, received the Pulitzer Prize in biography (see complete bio below). Dr Mack's presentation at an afternoon panel was so warmly received that he was asked to stay and present an additional evening talk, which again met with positive response. Afterward, he went to dinner with friends.

On his return to the home at which he was staying while in London, traveling on foot on Totteridge Road, he was struck by a vehicle being driven by an intoxicated driver. Dr Mack was in a crosswalk. Dr Mack was pronounced dead on the scene by London police and is believed to have died on impact.

Dr Mack leaves three sons, two grandsons, his former wife, and many friends who love him dearly.

This information will be revised as needed and will be replaced by a statement from Dr Mack's family when available. Information will be posted to the John E Mack Institute website, www.johnemackinstitute.org

The John E Mack Institute, recently named in his honor, honors Dr Mack's courageous examination of human experiences, and his landmark explorations of the ways in which perceptions and beliefs about reality shape the human condition.

BIOGRAPHICAL INFORMATION

John Mack (From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia)

John Edward Mack, M.D. (October 4, 1929 - Sep 27, 2004), professor of psychiatry at Harvard Medical School and Pulitzer Prize-winning biographer, considered to be a leading authority on the spiritual or transformational affects of alleged alien encounter experiences.

Mack received his medical degree from the Harvard Medical School (Cum Laude, 1955) after undergraduate study at Oberlin (Phi Beta Kappa, 1951). He is a graduate of the Boston Psychoanalytic Society and Institute and is Board certified in child and adult psychoanalysis.

The dominant theme of his life's work has been the exploration of how one's perceptions of the world affect one's relationships. He addressed this issue of "worldview" on the individual level in his early clinical explorations of dreams, nightmares and teen suicide, and in his biographical study of the life of British officer T. E. Lawrence (Lawrence of Arabia), for which he received the Pulitzer Prize in biography in 1977.

Mack advocated that Western culture requires a shift away from a purely materialist worldview (which he feels is responsible for the Cold War, the global ecological crisis, ethnonationalism and regional conflict) towards a transpersonal worldview which embraces certain elements of Eastern spiritual and philosophical traditions.

Mack's interest in the spiritual aspect of human experience has been compared by the New York Times to that of fellow Harvard alum William James, and like James, Mack became a controversial figure for his efforts to bridge spirituality and psychiatry.

This theme was taken to a controversial extreme in the early 1990s when Mack commenced his decade-plus study of 200 men and women who claimed that recurrent alien encounter experiences had affected the way they regarded the world, including a heightened sense of spirituality and environmental concern. Mack's interest in the spiritual or transformational aspects of people's alien encounters, and his suggestion that the experience of alien contact itself may be more spiritual than physical in nature -- yet nonetheless real -- set him apart from many of his contemporaries such as Budd Hopkins, who initially advocated the physical reality of aliens.

In 1994 the Dean of Harvard Medical School appointed a committee of peers to review Mack's clinical care and clinical investigation of the people who had shared their alien encounters with him (some of their cases were written of in Mack's 1994 book Abduction). After fourteen months of inquiry and amid growing questions from the academic community (including Harvard Professor of Law Alan Dershowitz) regarding the validity of Harvard's investigation of a tenured professor, Harvard issued a statement stating that the Dean had "reaffirmed Dr. Mack's academic freedom to study what he wishes and to state his opinions without impediment," concluding "Dr. Mack remains a member in good standing of the Harvard Faculty of Medicine."

Mack's explorations later broadened into the general consideration of the merits of an expanded notion of reality, one which allows for experiences that may not fit the Western materialist paradigm, yet deeply affect people's lives. His second (and final) book on the alien encounter experience, Passport to the Cosmos: Human Transformation and Alien Encounters (1999), was as much the culmination of his work with the "experiencers" of alien encounters (to whom the book is dedicated) as it was a philosophical treatise connecting the themes of spirituality and modern worldviews.

Notes:
Mack was a student of Grof Holotropic Breathwork, a meditative technique developed by Stanislav Grof.

Mack's work was documented in the film "TOUCHED" by Emmy-nominated filmmaker Laurel Chiten
http://www.blinddogfilms.com/touched/

HIGH RESOLUTION (3.5 MB) PORTRAIT OF DR JOHN MACK
http://www.johnemackinstitute.org/johnmack.jpg

Archive of Dr John Mack's writings:
http://www.passporttothecosmos.com

The John E Mack Institute:
http://www.johnemackinstitute.org


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