Project Advisors

Dancing with the Trickster brings together leading experts in the fields of transpersonal psychology, parapsychology, neurophysiology, dream research, and emotional intelligence.


Leslie Combs, PhD (Principal Advisor)

Leslie is the Doshi Professor of Consciousness Studies and Director of The Center for Consciousness Studies at the California Institute of Integral Studies in San Francisco. He is also the President of the Society for Consciousness Studies and Director of Consciousness Studies master’s degree program at the Graduate Institute of Connecticut. His background is in consciousness studies, neuro-psychology, and systems sciences. He is author of more than 200 articles, chapters, and books on consciousness and the brain, including The Radiance of Being (2nd Ed): Understanding the Grand Integral Vision; Living the Integral Life, winner of the best-book award of the Scientific and Medical Network of the UK, with a foreword by Ken Wilber; Synchronicity: Through the Eyes of Science, Myth, and the Trickster, with Mark Holland; and Consciousness Explained Better: Towards an Integral Understanding of the Multifaceted Nature of Consciousness.

Leslie is a co-founder of The Society for Chaos Theory in Psychology and the Life Sciences, a member of The General Evolution Research Group, and the one-hundred-member Club of Budapest. He is Co-Editor of the Journal of Conscious Evolution, and Associate Editor of Dynamical Psychology.

He was the winner of the 2002-2003 National Teaching Award of the Association of Graduate Liberal Studies Programs, and in the same year, he held the UNCA Honorary Ruth and Leon Feldman Professorship.

You can find his work on the web at Source Integralis.

Stanley Krippner, PhD (Principal Advisor)

Stanley has won more laurels from more organizations than he can keep track of, including several lifetime achievement awards from the American Psychological Association (APA) — the world’s largest organization of psychologists and the definer of mainstream thought in the field — among them the APA Award for Distinguished Contributions to the International Advancement of Psychology and the Charlotte and Karl Buhler Award for Humanistic Psychology. He also received The International Association for the Study of Dreams (IASD) Lifetime Achievement Award in 2006.

Stanley is a Fellow in four divisions of the APA, and past-president of two divisions. Formerly, he was director of the Kent State University Child Study Center, Kent, Ohio, and the Maimonides Medical Center Dream Research Laboratory, in Brooklyn, New York.

“Stan belongs on the Mount Rushmore of parapsychology,” says fellow ESP researcher Charles Tart.

Even James “The Amazing” Randi, perhaps the world’s most prominent skeptic, offers his endorsement: “There are so few things in this field you can depend on, and there are so many people who are prejudiced and biased. But I can depend on Stan. And I don’t think he’s biased at all.”

Stanley has conducted workshops and seminars on dreams, PTSD, anomalous experiences, shamanism, hypnosis, and much more in nearly 25 different countries, including Brazil and several others countries in Latin America, and in Canada, China, India, and Japan, and throughout Europe, Russia, and South Africa. He is a member of the editorial board for the Journal of Indian Psychology and Revista Argentina de Psicologia Paranormal, and the advisory board for International School for Psychotherapy, Counseling, and Group Leadership (St. Petersburg) and the Czech Unitaria (Prague). He holds faculty appointments at the Universidade Holistica Internacional (Brasilia) and the Instituto de Medicina y Tecnologia Avanzada de la Conducta (Ciudad Juarez). He has given invited addresses for the Chinese Academy of Sciences and the Russian Academy of Pedagogical Sciences, and he is a Fellow of the Society for the Scientific Study of Religion.

You can find his work on the web at

David Lukoff, PhD (Principal Advisor)

David is a licensed psychologist and Professor Emeritus at Sofia University. His work focuses on the treatment of schizophrenia, transpersonal psychotherapy, spiritual issues in clinical practice, and case study methodology. He incorporates transpersonal approaches in his clinical work including meditation, compassion training and guided imagery, as well as leading groups on spirituality. He is author of 80 articles and chapters on spiritual issues and mental health, co-author of the DSM-IV category, “Religious or Spiritual Problem,” co-president of the Association for Transpersonal Psychology, founding board member of the Institute for Spirituality and Psychology, and also maintains the Spiritual Competency Resource Center at He has served on the faculties of Harvard, UCLA, Oxnard College, California Institute of Integral Studies, and Saybrook. He has been an active workshop presenter worldwide, providing training for psychologists in spiritual competencies, problems, and emergencies.

You can find his work on the web at the Spiritual Competency Resource Center.

Dean Radin, PhD (Principal Advisor)

Dean is Chief Scientist at the Institute of Noetic Sciences (IONS) and Adjunct Faculty in the Department of Psychology at Sonoma State University. His original career track as a concert violinist shifted into science after he earned a BSEE degree in electrical engineering, magna cum laude with honors in physics, from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, and then an MS in electrical engineering and a PhD in psychology from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. For a decade he worked on advanced telecommunications R&D at AT&T Bell Laboratories and GTE Laboratories. For more than two decades, he has been engaged in consciousness research. Before joining the research staff at IONS in 2001, he held appointments at Princeton University, University of Edinburgh, University of Nevada, and several Silicon Valley think-tanks.

He is author or coauthor of more than 200 technical and popular articles, a dozen book chapters, and several books including the bestselling The Conscious Universe (HarperOne, 1997); Entangled Minds (Simon & Schuster, 2006); Supernormal (Random House, 2013); and his most recent, Real Magic (Penguin Random House, 2018). His technical articles have appeared in journals ranging from Foundations of Physics and Physics Essays to Psychological Bulletin and Journal of Consciousness Studies; he was featured in a New York Times Magazine article; and he has appeared on dozens of television shows ranging from the BBC’s Horizon and PBS’s Closer to Truth to Oprah and Larry King Live. He has given more than 250 interviews and talks, including invited presentations at Harvard (medical), Stanford (medical and statistics), Cambridge (physics), and Princeton (psychology), for industries including Google and Johnson & Johnson, and for government organizations including the US Navy and DARPA.

Dean’s website is

Fariba Bogzaran, PhD

Fariba is an artist and founder of the dream studies program at JFK University and is one of the pioneers in the field of dream studies.

She has been an exhibiting artist since 1983 and curating exhibitions inquiring into dreams, science and consciousness since 1985. Her research connected her to the lineage of Surrealism and Dynaton group dialoguing with Roberto Matta, Lee Mullican, Gordon Onslow Ford and many others. Her research in art and lucid dreaming led to the development of Lucid Art. She is the co-founder and the Creative Director of the Lucid Art Foundation.

In the 1980s, she researched the science of lucid dreaming with the Lucidity Project team, conducting laboratory studies at the Stanford Sleep Laboratory. She has been writing and teaching about the art, science and transpersonal aspect of lucid dreaming for more than twenty years.

Rael Cahn, M.D., Ph.D.

Dr. Rael Cahn, M.D., Ph.D., is a Clinical Associate Professor of Psychiatry with the USC Department of Psychiatry. He directs the USC Center for Mindfulness Science and his lab at the USC Brain and Creativity Institute. He completed his M.D. as well as his Ph.D. in Neurosciences at UC San Diego.  For his Ph.D. he conduccted EEG and Event-Related Potential research in San Diego with Dr. John Polich exploring the neural and psychological correlates of long-term vipassana meditation practice and at the Burghoelzli in Zurich, Switzerland with Dr. Franz Vollenweider exploring the effects of psilocybin in comparison to meditation.   Broadly, he has long sought to bridge the realms of science and spirit through his research and clinical work.   In particular he seeks to assess the neural correlates to transpersonal states and traits of consciousness utlizing the tools of meditation and psychedelic therapies.   Early in life he experienced a series of inner psychospiritual crises and awakenings that overlapped in their outer expression with mania and psychosis.  Recognizing that the predominant worldview in the Western worlds of science and psychiatry had no room for these experiences he set out to explore these domains of inner experience with the tools of modern science and explore holistic, integrative modes of addressing these forms of suffering and crisis.

David Feinstein, PhD

David is a clinical psychologist who has served on the faculties of Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Antioch College, and the California School of Professional Psychology. Author or co-author of eight books and more than 80 professional articles, he has been a pioneer in the areas of energy psychology and energy medicine. His books have been translated into 18 languages and have won nine national awards, including the U.S. Book News Best Psychology/Mental Health Book in 2007 (for Personal Mythology) and an Indies Best Books Award (for The Promise of Energy Psychology). He and his wife, Donna Eden, are the founding directors of Innersource in Ashland, Oregon.

His website is Energy Psychology.

Dan Gaylinn, PhD

Dan is a consulting producer on the project. Dan earned his BA in a self-designed interdisciplinary major: The Psychology of Film, from Oberlin College and earned his Masters in Transpersonal Psychology and doctorate in Clinical Psychology from Sofia University (formerly, the Institute for Transpersonal Psychology). His dissertation was entitled, Media Assistance: Exploring the Effects of Three Methods of Guided Relaxation on Stress with Adolescents, which compared in-person, audio-guided and video-guided methods of delivering guided relaxation with teenagers. He has more than a decade of clinical therapy experience working with a diverse population of clients struggling with a wide range of mental illness, and presently works as a Psychology Assistant in a private psychotherapy practice in San Francisco where he specializes in the treatment of mild-to-moderate stress-induced anxiety and depression.

He also draws upon his extensive experience as an amateur filmmaker and videographer in his consultation with artists, filmmakers, and entrepreneurs.

Dan’s research interests include transformative states of consciousness, new pedagogical paradigms, and the inter-relational impact of emerging electronic media.

You can find more at his website Dr. Gaylinn

Julia Mossbridge, PhD

Julia is the founder and research director of Mossbridge Institute, LLC, a Visiting Scholar in the Psychology Department at Northwestern University, a Fellow at the Institute of Noetic Sciences, the Science Director at Focus@Will Labs, and an Associated Professor in Integral and Transpersonal Psychology at the California Institute of Integral Studies.

You can find her work on the web at:

Jennifer Michael Hecht, PhD

Jennifer is a poet, philosopher, historian and commentator. She is the author of the bestseller Doubt: A History, an examination of religious and philosophical doubt. Her new book is Stay: A History of Suicide and the Arguments Against It, out from Yale University Press. Her The Happiness Myth brings a historical eye to modern wisdom about how to lead a good life. Hecht’s The End of the Soul: Scientific Modernity, Atheism, and Anthropology won Phi Beta Kappa’s 2004 Ralph Waldo Emerson Award “For scholarly studies that contribute significantly to interpretations of the intellectual and cultural condition of humanity.”

Publisher’s Weekly called her poetry book, Funny, “One of the most original and entertaining books of the year.”  Her first book of poetry, The Next Ancient World, won three national awards, including the Poetry Society of America’s First Book award for 2001. Her new book of poetry, Who Said, came out from Copper Canyon in 2013. She holds a PhD in the History of Science/European Cultural History from Columbia University (1995) and has taught at several universities, including in graduate programs at Columbia University and the New School.

Jennifer has also published in many peer-reviewed journals, including The Journal of the History of IdeasIsis: Journal of the History of Science Society; French Historical Studies; and The Journal of the History of the Behavioral Sciences, and has delivered invited lectures at Harvard, Yale, MIT, Cal Tech, Columbia University as well as The Zen Mountain Monastery, Temple Israel, Saint Bart’s Episcopal Church, and other institutions of learning and introspection. In 2010 Hecht served as one of the five nonfiction judges for the National Book Award and in 2015 helped judge the philosophy section of the National Endowment for the Humanities new Public Scholar Award. She is an active member of the New York Institute for the Humanities at New York University. Jennifer has appeared on Hardball on MSNBC, the Discovery Channel, and The Morning Show. She lectures widely.

You can find her work on the web at

Beth Hedva, PhD

Beth is the author of Journey from Betrayal to Trust and the award-winning Betrayal, Trust and Forgiveness. She’s an internationally recognized authority in the field of “change.” As a counselor, she helps individuals find enlightening ways to succeed in meeting life’s greatest challenges. Beth has held core faculty appointments in Antioch University’s Department of Clinical Psychology, and John F. Kennedy University’s prestigious Department of Consciousness Studies in California. She made her reputation by blending ancient and indigenous cross-cultural healing practices and spiritual traditions, with modern psychological best practices to promote an integrative approach to community health and wellness. She is a licensed Psychologist and a Marriage, Family and Child Counselor. Since 1989, she has practiced as a Clinical Parapsychologist, having worked as an “Expert Intuitive” and liaison to the Office of Paranormal Investigation on research teams to explore ghosts, hauntings and poltergeists.

Visit her at

Jean Houston, PhD

Jean has long been regarded as one of the principal founders of the “human potential movement.” A prolific writer, Jean is the author of 26 books including Jump Time, Search for the Beloved, and Life Force. Her PBS Special, “A Passion for the Possible,” has been widely shown. Her book drawn from the program was published by Harper San Francisco.

As an advisor to UNICEF in human and cultural development, she has worked around the world helping to implement some of their extensive educational programs. She has also served in an advisory capacity to President and Mrs. Clinton as well as assisting Mrs. Clinton in her writing of her book, It Takes A Village: And Other Lessons Children Teach Us. Jean holds a BA from Barnard College, a PhD in psychology from the Union Graduate School, and a PhD in religion from the Graduate Theological Foundation.

You can find her work on the web at

Sean Kelly, PhD

Sean is professor of Philosophy, Cosmology, and Consciousness at the California Institute of Integral Studies (CIIS). He is the author of Coming Home: The Birth and Transformation of the Planetary Era and Individuation and the Absolute: Hegel, Jung, and the Path toward Wholeness. Sean is also co-editor, with Donald Rothberg, of Ken Wilber in Dialogue: Conversations with Leading Transpersonal Thinkers and co-translator, with Roger Lapointe, of Edgar Morin’s book, Homeland Earth: A manifesto for the New Millennium

Sean’s research is increasingly focused on engaging creatively with the complex character of the current planetary crisis. Set within a transdisciplinary approach to the evolution of consciousness, he has developed integral perspectives on the transition to a life-sustaining society, including a more integral understanding of Gaia theory. At the center of his work is the conviction that we are being called to participate actively in the awakening of Gaia, our planet-home, guided by the twin virtues of wisdom and compassion in service of the entire Earth community.

Rev. Olga Louchakova-Schwartz, MD, PhD

Olga is a philosopher and pioneering visionary interdisciplinary researcher who worked at two iconic institutions, Pavlov Institute of Physiology of the Russian Academy of Sciences (1983-1992) and the Institute of Transpersonal Psychology (ITP) (1992-2016). Currently Professor Emerita of Psychology and Comparative Religion, in the past Olga worked as Director of Research and was a founder of Neurophenomenology Center at ITP, the first of its kind, where she conducted studies of memory in advanced meditators.

One of her projects, the study of visual-spatial processing in Tibetan monks, was featured on BBC and Science Daily. Professor Louchakova-Schwartz is also known for her research of introspection, biological mechanisms and phenomenology of spontaneous religious experiences, interpretive commentaries on the phenomenology of life, research of first-person accounts in medieval Greek and Arabic language literature, and numerous other projects.

She is a founder of the Society for the Phenomenology of Religious Experiences and guest-teaches at the Graduate Theological Union, UC Davis School of Medicine, and Hult International Business School. Her work in biotech was supported by the Shemyakin Institute of Bio-organic Chemistry, and in psychology by the Spitzer and Zimmer Foundations. She maintains a private management consulting practice in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Michael Mayer, PhD

Michael is a licensed psychologist, hypnotherapist, and Qigong/Tai Chi teacher who specializes in giving his patients self-healing methods for health problems. He presents his approach to bodymind healing as a keynote speaker at professional conferences, national/international workshops, universities, and hospitals. He co-founded the Transpersonal Psychology Program at John F. Kennedy University where he trained therapists for 12 years, and he is a co-founder of, and a practitioner at, The Health Medicine Center, a multi-disciplinary medical clinic practicing integrative health-care. Michael pioneered the integration of Qigong and psychotherapy and was the first person in the United States to train doctoral psychology students in these methods. The World Institute for Self-Healing gave him an award for outstanding research and contribution to the advancement of mind-body medicine. He is board certified and a fellow of the American Association for Integrative Medicine.

Michael is the author of twenty publications on bodymind healing including six books, audiotapes on cancer and chronic disease, and articles on chronic pain and anxiety. His book, Bodymind Healing Psychotherapy (2007), has been released as a trade paperback called Energy Psychology by North Atlantic/Random House, 2009.  Both books have received endorsements from leaders in mind-body medicine, and from the journal PsycCritiques. His latest book is The Path of a Reluctant Metaphysician: Stories and Practices for Troubled Times (Bodymind Healing Publications, 2012).

You can find his work on the web at

Ilene Serlin, PhD

Ilene is a psychologist and registered dance/movement therapist in San Francisco and Marin. She’s a past president of the San Francisco Psychological Association, a Fellow of the American Psychological Association, and a past president of the Division of Humanistic Psychology. She has taught at Saybrook University, Lesley University, UCLA, the New York Gestalt Institute, and the C.G. Jung Institute in Zurich. She’s the editor of Whole Person Healthcare, a three-volume work with more than 100 chapters and articles on the integration of Western and non-Western healing practices.

You can find her work on the web at

Michael Guy Thompson, PhD

Michael received his psychoanalytic training from R. D. Laing and associates at the Philadelphia Association in London, and his PhD in Clinical Psychology from The Wright Institute, Berkeley. He is Personal and Supervising Analyst and Faculty Member, Psychoanalytic Institute of Northern California, and Adjunct Professor at the California Institute of Integral Studies, San Francisco. Michael is also Founder and Director of Free Association, Inc., a not-for-profit organization devoted to the relief of severe psychopathology. He is the author of more than 100 journal articles, book chapters, and reviews on psychoanalysis, phenomenology, and schizophrenia, as well as five books: The Death of Desire: A Study in Psychopathology (1985); The Truth About Freud’s Technique: The Encounter with the Real (1994); The Ethic of Honesty: The Fundamental Rule of Psychoanalysis (2004); The Legacy of R. D. Laing: An Appraisal of His Contemporary Relevance (2015); and The Death of Desire: An Existential Study in Sanity and Madness (2016, 2nd Edition), a completely revised and expanded edition of the 1985 edition.

Michael serves on the editorial boards of numerous professional journals, including Psychoanalytic Psychology, the Journal of Phenomenological Psychology, the Journal of European Psychoanalysis, and the Journal of Existential Analysis. He has lectured extensively throughout the United States, Canada, Mexico, Great Britain, Spain, and Australia, and is a member of various psychoanalytic organizations, including the International Psychoanalytical Association, the College of Psychoanalysts, and the Philadelphia Association, Ltd., all in Great Britain. Michael practices psychoanalysis and psychotherapy in San Francisco.

You can find his work on the web at

Yannis Toussulis, PhD

Yannis is a writer, researcher, lecturer, and seminar presenter whose doctoral studies focused on the application of phenomenological and hermeneutical research to consciousness studies. In addition to co-directing the Consciousness Program in Graduate Psychology at Antioch University/West for several years, he served as an adjunct professor in intercultural and political psychology at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies for more than a decade. Yannis has lectured and presented seminars at institutions as diverse as Esalen Institute, The Egyptian Scientific Society (Cairo), the Global Majority, and the UNDP. His book, Sufism and the Way of Blame (Quest Books, 2011) won the Independent Books Publisher’s Gold Award in Religion in 2012. As a traditionally authorized teacher of Sufism, he currently serves as the spiritual director of Itlaq Foundation.

Maya Zuckerman

Maya is a multiplatform producer, Culture Hacker and emerging technology aficionado who applies the power of transmedia to world-changing ideas. She brings a wealth of experience from different media silos: visual effects, film, production, gaming, startups, product management, and brand narrative. She has worked with big feature films and on game cinematics such as “Ghostbusters” and “Star-Trek online” for companies such as Ubisoft, EA, Vivendi, and Activision. She has also worked in product development for companies such as the Chopra Center, Harpo Productions, and

Click here to read more about our Production Team.