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
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,
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.
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
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
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
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.
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
HIGH RESOLUTION (3.5 MB) PORTRAIT OF DR JOHN MACK
Archive of Dr John Mack's writings:
The John E Mack Institute:
Source of information:
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