A small history of the Consciousness Studies Academy
On 22 January 2015 the idea, the vision and conception of a new, Consciousness Studies Academy in Vienna were presented in Vienna.
At that time as it was still thought as an institute for consciousness research, Dr. Rudolf Kapellner as founder and Daniel Dick as co-founder of the first hour, introduced to a surprisingly large number of interested people their ideas and plans for an independent and interdisciplinary institute. The focus of this presentation was the opening of "Consciousness spaces" at various levels and for all disciplines.
This starting presentation was followed by a year with various steps of development and intensive discussions.
The idea for an institutionalized academic consciousness research had been discussed by R. Kapellner long before with other, interested people - above all with Prof. Dr. Giselher Guttmann in 2005. During a meeting of G. Guttmann and R. Kapellner in January 2014, this project came up again and G. Guttmann the asserted his support with pleasure. R. Kapellner was invited to design a curriclum for consciousness research and presented it in a workshop at Sigmund Freud Private University in June 2014.
After the workshop at the SFU, it was quickly clear that such a comprehensive, interdisciplinary and radical approach to consciousness research, as developed and proposed by R. Kapellner, can not fit into existing academic institutions, but requires a completely independent and independent structure. Existing structures, both institutional and conceptual, have already made their conditions.
On June 23, 2014, at night in a Viennese jazz bar, the vision finally appeared, which convey the power for this kind of consciousness research:
It must be a "Universitas" - not a university, but a Universitas in the original and radical sense. A community of teachers and learners. A research and education space whose results may have the potential to revolutionize the existing paradigm of sciences.
In July 2014, R. Kapellner and Daniel Dick met. Daniel was the last tutor of Prof. Dr. Manfred Kremser's lecture "Religion and Consciousness Research" at the Institute for Cultural and Social Anthropology of the University of Vienna. The early death of M. Kremser in 2013 was also the beginning of the end of consciousness research at the department of social and cultural anthropology.
Manfred Kremser had been a teacher and a friend for R. Kapellner and D. Dick. It was a deep concern of both to continue with consciousness research as an academic subject and not to let it die away with the teacher.
The following months were filled with hours of talks and meetings with other people in similar subject areas.
In January 2015 time had come: an institute for consciousness research was presented, the foundation of it was officially announced and a first semester was presented.
In working groups with interested students and professors, the content, organizational, structural and legal requirements and key issues for such a mega project were outlined over the next months as well as a concrete workflow. The first lecture led by D. Dick “Perspectives on consciousness research” and the first block lecture "Basics of Inter- and Transdisciplinary Consciousess Research" by R. Kapellner were successfully held.
At the end of the first semester, the necessary decisions were clear: it is no longer an institute, it is an academy. The project was continued. This means: a second, third and fourth semesters were set up, the network was expanded, research projects were initiated, a sociocratic model as an internal organizational structure was decided, the legal framework was created and so on.