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About Essentia Foundation

The challenge

We live under a materialist metaphysics: all that supposedly exists is matter, an abstract entity conceptually defined as being outside and independent of consciousness. This metaphysics is often conflated with science itself, even though the scientific method only allows us to determine how nature behaves, not what nature is in and of itself.

The mainstream cultural endorsement of metaphysical materialism became firmly established in the second half of the nineteenth century. Since then, however, its strength has been derived mainly from intellectual habit and inherited assumptions, not from clear reasoning, evidence or explanatory power. As a matter of fact, over the past few decades evidence has been accumulating in foundations of physics, neuroscience and analytic philosophy that materialism is false.

Nonetheless, the cultural prevalence of metaphysical materialism has myriad—and arguably dysfunctional—implications at both individual and social levels: it impacts our sense of meaning and purpose, our value systems, our understanding of health, disease and death, as well as the way we relate to others, the planet and even ourselves.

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Our goals

Essentia Foundation aims at communicating, in an accurate yet accessible way, the latest analytic and scientific indications that metaphysical materialism is fundamentally flawed. Indeed, clear reasoning and the evidence at hand indicate that metaphysical idealism or nondualism—the notion that nature is essentially mental—is the best explanatory model we currently have. This is known in specialist communities, but hasn’t yet been openly communicated, in an accessible manner, to the culture at large. Essentia Foundation hopes to help close this communication gap.

Although we acknowledge that analytic or scientific understanding, in and of itself, isn’t life- or behavior-changing—only felt experience or knowledge by direct acquaintance is—in modern culture the intellect is the bouncer of the heart. Therefore, we aim to create intellectual space and legitimacy for the notion that, at its most fundamental level, all reality unfolds in an extended field of mentation.

Way of working

Essentia Foundation questions metaphysical materialism and argues for the plausibility of idealism by leveraging the exact same epistemic values our culture reifies today: coherence, internal logical consistency, conceptual parsimony, empirical adequacy and explanatory power. We show that, if applied objectively and consequently, these values point directly at idealism, while contradicting materialism.

Operationally, Essentia Foundation identifies and helps to promote scientific and philosophical work relevant to metaphysical idealism or nondualism. As such, we can be regarded as an information hub—strictly and thoroughly curated to weed out nonsense and pseudo-science—for the latest developments in science, analytic philosophy and other areas of scholarly work with a bearing on our culture’s metaphysical views. Our community of authors lists a growing number of academics, scholars, philosophers, scientists and authors whose works are opening the way for a new, more functional and true understanding of ourselves and reality at large.

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Editorial commitment

Essentia Foundation is not philosophically neutral: we were created precisely to address an imbalance in how the metaphysical implications of results from science and philosophy are communicated by the media.

That said, you can expect from us editorial rigor, accuracy and careful selection of the material we choose to publish. Strict curation—erring rather on the side of caution in cases of high uncertainty—is what characterizes our approach. To put it simply, we only publish credible work. And although we do try to communicate in an accessible manner—dispensing with jargon and academic obscurantism as much as possible—we are committed to not allowing these simplifications to misrepresent the original material.

Again, Essentia Foundation shall never promote nonsense, pseudo-science or gullible, unsubstantiated claims of the kind often associated with mind-first ontologies in the popular culture. This is our firm commitment to you. Whatever you see in our material may be polemical—in the spirit that every major scientific or philosophical advancement has originally been polemical—but shall never be unsubstantiated, irrational or deceiving. In cases where the solidity or credibility of a relevant result isn’t clear, we consult our Academic Advisory Board before publishing it.

Our team

Fred Matser

Fred Matser

Founder and Chairman

Evert Greup

Evert Greup

Non-Executive Director

Jan van der Greef

Prof. dr. Jan van der Greef

Non-Executive Director

Bernardo Kastrup

Bernardo Kastrup, PhD, PhD

Executive Director

Academic Advisory Board

Author Jan van der Greef

Prof. dr. Jan van der Greef

Author Sarah Durston

Prof. dr. Sarah Durston

Author Mikhail Ilyin

Prof. Mikhail Ilyin, PhD, PhD

Markus Müller

Markus Müller, PhD

Author Jeffrey Kripal

Prof. Jeffrey J. Kripal, PhD

Author Hyman Schipper

Prof. Hyman M. Schipper, MD, PhD, FRCPC

Author Edward Kelly

Prof. Edward F. Kelly, PhD

Author Donald Hoffman

Prof. Donald D. Hoffman, PhD

Author Claus Metzner

Claus Metzner, PhD

Author Bernard Carr

Prof. Bernard Carr, PhD

Let us build the future of our culture together

Essentia Foundation is a registered non-profit committed to making its content as accessible as possible and without advertisements. Therefore, we depend on contributions from people like you to continue to do our work. There are many ways to contribute.

Essentia Contribute scaled

Essentia Foundation is an official Dutch Public Benefit Organization (in Dutch: ‘ANBI,’ or ‘Algemeen Nut Beogende Instelling‘). Public Benefit Organizations are entitled to make use of specific Dutch tax advantages. An ANBI organization must publish an ‘ANBI publication’ (in Dutch: ‘ANBI publicatieplicht‘) on their website. You can download it below. It is in Dutch only.
ANBI publicatieplicht 2020 Stichting Essentia Foundation (pdf)