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Utrecht II
Charting the Future of Parapsychology
Closing Remarks
Lisette Coly
Executive Director, Parapsychology Foundation
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Due to the standing ovation, the comments below changed somewhat.
To see a video of the closing ceremonies, click here.



It is hard to believe that we have come to the close of our deliberations.

It goes without saying that all those within Parapsychology Foundation and the HJBF Foundation who have worked to coordinate this conference must thank our staff and above all you the attendees of Utrecht II who have given of yourselves and expertise so generously as we all have sought to chart the Future of Parapsychology. Our moderator, Dr. Chris Roe has been of inestimable value to keep us all to the task at hand with an able assist from UII’s Advisory Committee.

As we close this Second Utrecht International Conference with the sincere hope that our deliberations will be taken up once again by future generations in the Sprit of Utrecht it will be good to remember the timeless words of Gardner Murphy in 1953:

”We need fuller understanding from the scientific public; fuller support for long and strenuous investigation; a much more effective way of finding the young men and women who will be the parapsychologists of the decades ahead …

Personally I doubt whether parapsychology will bring us this larger understanding of human nature by our own efforts alone. … Rather it seems to me that the scientific spirit working through the meetings of history and the social sciences, through the insights of the physical sciences, the biological sciences, medicine, psychiatry, psychology and catching the spirit of the Rembrandts, the Beethovens, the DaVinci’s who have described man not in sober prose alone, but in color, in tone, and in eternal principles of form, can lead us to an integrated conception of the nature of man more satisfying than that which we now possess. But in this integrative effort of all the modes of understanding man parapsychology will, if our work be well done, play a vital role.”


Ladies and Gentlemen, I think we here did our best to play a vital role. It is to future parapsychologists that we will pass Utrecht II’s Baton … and we should take heart and take with us as we leave these hallowed halls the thoughts of Frances P. Bolton, PF’s co-founder and benefactress delivered at Utrecht I …

“Man’s knowledge is limited only by his all too great readiness to stay within the boundaries of the proven. Here Man shall dedicate themselves anew to the task of the search for knowledge and for truth in the realms beyond those upon science as such has set its seal of approval.”

The Proceedings of “Utrecht II: Charting the Future of Parapsychology” are now adjourned.


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