IONS and the Science Behind "The Lost Symbol"


IONS and the Science Behind "The Lost Symbol"

Purchase The Lost SymbolIntuition, ESP, quantum entanglement, and other extraordinary phenomena are part of a normal day’s research at the Institute of Noetic Sciences, but they have mystified much of the Western world enough to push them into the shadows of the imagination. It took a bestselling novel to move noetic sciences into the mainstream spotlight when Dan Brown’s The Lost Symbol was published in the Fall of 2009.

To help readers of the book learn more about noetic science, we've put together this page of resources to take you deeper into the actual science that inspired Dan Brown.

Our real human potential

“Her field of choice – Noetic Science – had been virtually unknown when she first heard of it, but in recent years, it had started opening new doors of understanding into the power of the human mind.” (The Lost Symbol, p. 15)

Brown's novel features the fictional, mystery-solving Harvard symbologist Robert Langdon and noetic scientist Dr. Katherine Solomon. The characters chase mysterious symbols during a 12-hour period in Washington, D.C., employing the noetic sciences to untangle the web of clues and resolve the conflict between good and evil.

One million copies of The Lost Symbol sold in the first 24 hours of its release and the words “noetic sciences” crossed the lips of many readers for the first time. The book is an artful weaving together of fact and fiction, and Brown identifies the Institute of Noetic Sciences as one of the organizations in the novel that actually exist, making IONS’ website one of the most trusted sources for knowledge about noetic science and experienced phenomena that cannot be easily explained by traditional scientific models.

The word "noetic"

What are the Noetic Sciences?

"The Science behind The Lost Symbol" audio recordings

A recorded 15-part teleseminar series created especially for readers of The Lost Symbol takes you deeper into individual fields of study within the noetic sciences. Headlining the series are leading consciousness science experts discussing anticipation, spiritual healing, shifting archetypes, nature and the cosmos, the biology and sociology of good and evil, ESP, the science of intention, and collective consciousness.

Recommended books

Journal Publications

This is a selected list of recent, peer-reviewed journal articles on various noetic topics related to things mentioned in the book, The Lost Symbol, that have been authored or co-authored by IONS staff scientists. They include such phenomena as perception through time, distant healing, interconnectedness, consciousness and health, individual and collective intention in the physical world, and transformation of consciousness.

Perception Through Time

Distant Healing Intention and Distant Physiological Connectedness

Consciousness and Health

Individual and Collective Intention in the Physical World

Transformation of Consciousness

In the News

“The recent breakthroughs Katherine had made here in the field of Noetic Science had ramifications across every discipline – from physics to history, to philosophy, to religion. Soon everything will change, she thought.” (The Lost Symbol, pg. 34)

Sharing a striking similarity with the book’s female protagonist, IONS’ CEO Dr. Marilyn Schlitz, a world-renowned anthropologist and noetic scientist, has worked with the Smithsonian Institute and conducted secret government remote-viewing experiments. Dr. Schlitz also helped design a 2000-pound electromagnetically-shielded testing room – IONS’ own “cube” (also featured in the book) – where IONS conducts many of its experiments.

Dr. Schlitz tumbled onto the pages of literary folklore when NPR also noticed the resemblance, and she became a global spokeswoman for others digging into the promise and realities of noetic science.

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US News and World Report


Science of Mind