Leonard George

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Leonard George (born 1957) is a Canadian psychologist and schizophrenia researcher based in Vancouver, British Columbia, best known for his writing and lectures on varieties of anomalous phenomena, spirituality, psychology and history.[1][2][3][4][5] In the 1990s he was a noted broadcaster in Canada, appearing on radio and television in that country and in the United States where he appeared on national programs such as a highly rated NBC special hosted by actor Peter Graves in October 1994.[6]

He is the author of two extensively annotated reference works on paranormal experience and religious history. The Washington Post included his Crimes of Perception: An Encyclopedia of Heresies and Heretics in a 1995 round-up of notable religion themed books.[7] This volume also appeared in British (London: Robson Books, 1995; Northam: Roundhouse, 2001) and several Spanish-langiage editions published in Spain and Mexico (Barcelona: Robinbook, 1998; Barcelona: Editorial Oceano, 1999; Mexico: Oceano, 1999). His second reference work, Alternative Realities: The Paranormal, The Mystic and the Transcendent in Human Experience (1995) was republished in a Book-of-the-Month Club edition in 1996.

George completed his B.Sc. in psychology at the University of Toronto in 1979. He earned his M.A. (1980) and Ph.D. (1985) in clinical psychology at the University of Western Ontario. He completed a one-year postdoctoral residency in 1986 at Victoria Hospital in London, Ontario, and completed licensing requirements and became a Registered Psychologist in both Ontario (1986) and British Columbia (1990). In addition to his clinical career, George is noted for his early experimental work and publications on the cognition of schizophrenia.[8][9][10][11][12] He also conducted some of the earliest research on practice effects in mental imagery enhancement training[13] His summaries of the relationship of cognitive variables such as mental imagery enhancement training, altered states of consciousness and expectancy to psi were also among the first reviews of the experimental literature on these topics.[14][15][16][17] In recent years George has made contributions to the cognitive science of religion through his application of findings from experimental research to interpretations of Neoplatonic texts through publications and presentations at the annual conferences of the International Society for Neoplatonic Studies (in 2003, 2005, 2009, and 2016), the Association for the Study of Esotericism (2014) and the American Academy of Religion (2015).[18][19][20][21][22][23][24][25]

From 1980 to 1981 George was a Research Fellow at the Foundation for Research on the Nature of Man in Durham, North Carolina. This was parapsychologist J.B. Rhine's Institute for Parapsychology, now renamed the Rhine Research Center.

Between 2013 and 2017 he was Chair of the Department of Psychology at Capilano University. In 2017 he became Chair of the School of Social Sciences at Caplilano University.[26] George retired from full-time teaching at Capilano in April 2018.

George has offered seminars across North America and Europe and in places as diverse as Alexandria, Egypt, and Iceland. Many of these were part of the eleven Esoteric Quest programs of the New York Open Center he has served as a presenter or advisor beginning in 2000.[27][28]

In July 2017 George delivered an invited presentation at the Institute of Philosophy, the Mongolian Academy of Sciences, in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia. He was invited to do so by Chuluunbaatar Gelegpil, Mongolia's Minister of Education and Culture. Accompanied by American psychologist and historian of medicine Richard Noll, George also conducted anthropological fieldwork among Mongol shamans and Buddhist lamas in areas outside Ulaanbaatar and in the eastern Gobi near Sainshand in Dornogovi province. Seven short videos of Mongol shamans performing a summer solstice ritual (Ulaan Tergel) on 21 June 2017 are available online.[29][30]


  • Alternative Realities: The Paranormal, the Mystic and the Transcendent in Human Experience. New York: Facts on File, 1995. ISBN 0-8160-2828-1 (hardcover); ISBN 0-8160-3213-0 (paperback)
  • Crimes of Perception: An Encyclopedia of Heresies and Heretics. New York: Paragon House, 1995. ISBN 1-55778-519-8; (British edition) Northam: Roundhouse, 2001): 978-1557785190
  • Enciclopedia de los herejas y las herjias. Translated by Jose Antonio Bravo. Barcelona: Editorial Oceano, 1999. ISBN 978-970613090


  1. ^ George, Leonard. "bio and office information". Capilano University. Retrieved 4 Aug 2017.
  2. ^ George, Leonard. "faculty bio". Capilano University. Retrieved 4 August 2017.
  3. ^ Todd, Douglas. "Psychologist dives into seances and contacting the dead". Vancouver Sun. Retrieved 31 October 2012.
  4. ^ George, Leonard (10 February 1995). "Seeing the Wonderful in the Weird". The Vancouver Sun (Opinion Page): A19.
  5. ^ Ernst, Ric (30 October 2012). "Photo of Leonard George in cemetery". Vancouver Sun.
  6. ^ "The Unexplained: Witches, Werewolves and Vampires". You Tube. Retrieved 1 August 2017.
  7. ^ Broadway, Bill (24 June 1995). "A Flood of New Titles of Biblical Proportions". The Washington Post (Metro Section): H9.
  8. ^ George, Leonard; Neufeld, R.W.J. (1984). "Imagery and verbal aspects of schizophrenic informational processing". British Journal of Clinical Psychology. 23: 9–18. doi:10.1111/j.2044-8260.1984.tb00621.x.
  9. ^ George, Leonard; Neufeld, R.W.J. (1985). "Cognition and symptomatology in schizophrenia". Schizophrenia Bulletin. 11 (2): 264–285. doi:10.1093/schbul/11.2.264.
  10. ^ George, Leonard; Neufeld, R.W.J. (1987). "Attentional resources and hemispheric functional asymmetry in schizophrenia". British Journal of Clinical Psychology. 26: 35–45. doi:10.1111/j.2044-8260.1987.tb00721.x.
  11. ^ George, Leonard (1987). "Magical ideation and schizophrenia". Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology. 55 (5): 778–779. doi:10.1037/0022-006x.55.5.778.
  12. ^ Neufeld, R.W.J.; Boksman, K.; Vollick, D.; George, L.; Carter, J. (2010). "Stochastic dynamics of stimulus encoding in schizophrenia: theory, testing and application". Journal of Mathematical Psychology. 54: 90–108. doi:10.1016/j.jmp.2009.04.002.
  13. ^ George, Leonard (1986). "Mental imagery enhancement training in behavior therapy: Current status and future prospects". Psychotherapy. 23: 81–92. doi:10.1037/h0085597.
  14. ^ George, Leonard (1981). "A survey of the relationship between imagery and psi". Journal of Parapsychology. 45: 121–146.
  15. ^ George, Leonard (1982). "Enhancement of psi functioning through mental imagery training". Journal of Parapsychology. 46: 111–125.
  16. ^ George, Leonard (1984). "Expectancy and psi: A critical review and reformulation". Journal of the American Society for Psychical Research. 78: 193–217.
  17. ^ Krippner, Stanley; George, Leonard (1986). "Psi phenomena as related to altered states of consciousness". Handbook of States of Consciousness (edited by Benjamin B. Wolman): 332–364.
  18. ^ George, Leonard (2005). "Listening to the voice of fire: Theurigal fitness and esoteric sensitivity". History of Platonism: Plato Redivivus (edited by R. Berchman and J. Finamore). New Orleans: University Press of the South: 287–304.
  19. ^ George, Leonard (2009). "Iamblichus on the esoteric perception of Nature". Esotericism, Religion and Nature, Edited by A. Versluis, C. Fanger, L. Irwin, and M. Philips. Grand Rapids, Michigan: Association for the Study of Esotericism: 73–92.
  20. ^ George, Leonard (2013). "Friction and fire: Experiential aspects of the Platonic tradition". Selections from the Prometheus Trust Conferences 2006-2010, Edited by L.h. Woodward. Wiltshire, UK: the Prometheus Trust: 123–130.
  21. ^ George, Leonard (2010). "A critical review of Philosophy as a Rite of Rebirth: From Ancient Egypt to Neplatonism by Algis Uzdavinys". International Journal of the Platonic Tradition. 4: 92–95. doi:10.1163/187254710x488069. Retrieved 1 August 2017.
  22. ^ George, Leonard (2001). "The Teachings of Iamblichus: Between Eros and Anteros". Lapis. 8: 61–66.
  23. ^ George, Leonard (1999). "Cross Purposes: The Christian Imagination of Late Antiquity". Cite journal requires |journal= (help)
  24. ^ George, Leonard (19 Nov 1999). "Through the Window". The Georgia Straight (Vancouver, B.C., Canada).
  25. ^ George, Leonard (10 June 2004). "Book review: The Pagan Christ by Tom Harpur". The Georgia Straight (Vancouver, B.C., Canada).
  26. ^ George, Leonard. "The Western Esoteric Tradition in the 21st Century". Sivananda Ashram Yoga Retreat Bahamas. Retrieved 1 July 2017.
  27. ^ George, Leonard. "Esoteric Quest -- Iceland". You Tube. New York Open Center. Retrieved 1 August 2017.
  28. ^ "Past Esoteric Quest Conferences". Esoteric Quest. New York Open Center. Retrieved 4 August 2017.
  29. ^ Noll, Richard. "Mongolian shamanism (playlist)". You Tube. Retrieved 3 August 2017.
  30. ^ Hill, Janelle. "Journey to a Sacred Summons". DeSales University News. DeSales University. Retrieved 11 September 2017.

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