Introduction to Consciousness-based Practices

By Nancy Midol, Marceau Chenault, Laurel McEwen

Activities in Sports Sciences and Physical Education (STAPS) are well-placed for applying cognitive and perceptive experiences to the study of consciousness-based practices. Generally, the intelligence of the unconscious body is not taken into account in terms of its relation to learning. This inborn intelligence involves our reaction to our surroundings and occurs without conscious awareness or anticipation of the resulting consequences. Consciousness can be understood as a rapport with the world that questions the interface between what is internal and what is external to the self. This issue is intended to contribute to this area of research through the analysis of situations and experiences within diverse contexts including freediving, dance, shamanic ritual, martial arts, taijiquan, qigong, and meditation. The field of STAPS holds the potential to become an interdisciplinary science that incorporates embodied cognition and that conceptualizes learning as the interface of philosophy and the behavioral sciences (such as ethology, anthropology, ecology, physiology, and enaction). Scientists are currently suggesting that we change the scale with which we interpret both the world and the universe we belong to. This is due to the repositioning of the individual within multiple entanglements and transformations that require a new holistic approach and perspective in contemporary sciences. Consciousness-based practices thus represent a pertinent point of entry for making sense of this change.


  • consciousness-based practices
  • science
  • holism
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