The grants competition for the 2013 Parapsychological Association Research Endowment (PARE) has come to a close, and two grant proposals have been awarded. The Parapsychological Association (PA) will be providing funds to support research investigating correlations between psi performance and altered states of consciousness, as well as research that seeks to elaborate on the belief that the deceased can receive messages written to them on the social networking site Facebook. Each research initiative will explore areas that have far-reaching implications for furthering the science of parapsychology and understanding the nature of consciousness.

Karolina Zychowicz (MSc, School of Social Sciences, University of Northampton) will look at a possible correlation between altered states of consciousness, such as meditation and psychedelic use in relation to precognition. Such states have been noted for their potential for psi facilitation in previous research. Participants will be divided into two groups those who have used ayahuasca within the last six months and those who have at least two years of meditation experience. The study will employ several questionnaires, which will assess belief in psi, openness to experience, anomalous experiences, and the phenomenology of these altered states of consciousness. Karolina aims to investigate whether there may be a significant difference in precognition scores (performance) between the two ASCs and will explore any correlations between frequency of use, length of use and precognition scores. This study aims to shed some light on altered states of consciousness and whether they can facilitate psi success.

Harriet Stubbs (Doctoral Candidate, Department of Sociology, University of York) will examine the belief that the deceased can receive messages written to them on the social networking site Facebook. Her qualitative analysis will also explore whether the ease of Facebook communication with the deceased is playing a part in the shifting of Western attitudes towards death and dying. The research will help to understand how people justify extraordinary beliefs by looking at real-world expressions of those beliefs.

Funding for PARE awards was made possible through a generous donation by Dr. Gertrude Schmeidler, who was a leading researcher and educator in the field of parapsychology. The awards are administered annually by the Board of the Parapsychological Association. One or more awards is made each year to cover the direct costs of conducting scientific research.

Donations to support the mission of the PA, including the funding of research initiatives, can be made by contacting Executive Director Annalisa Ventola at