My name is Christopher "Doc" Kelley and I am an adjunct professor, consciousness hacker, interdisciplinary artist (or Flux-Happener), and buddhist psychonaut (among other things). I received a PhD degree in Religion from Columbia University where I studied Indo-Tibetan Buddhism with Robert A. F. Thurman. I teach classes in the religious studies program at Eugene Lang College of Liberal Arts, The New School University. I am also a member of the teaching staff at Thinkolio; a pop-up classroom for lifetime learners. I co-curate Consciousness Hacking NYC and organize events of varying scale and nature. I reside in Brooklyn with my wife and two daughters.
In all my work, I try to adopt a pragmatic approach that values the primacy of transformative inner experiences. I support the kind of discourse that the American pragmatist philosopher Richard Rorty describes as "abnormal"— the sort of discourse that has the potential to de-center and disrupt one’s reified notions about themselves and the world around them. According Rorty, abnormal discourse is strange and thereby has the potential to move the larger conversation in an otherwise unforeseen and novel direction (Philosophy & the Mirror Nature, 1979).
I align myself with the "Buddhist psychonauts;" a perennial multicultural tradition of iconoclasts that Thurman extols in his writings and includes both Indo-Tibetan adepts as well as American Buddhists like Allen Ginsberg and John Cage, who use "inner technologies" to investigate the mind in much the same way astronauts use "outer technologies" to explore space (Inner Revolution, 1998).
My interests span a variety of fields including: music, interdisciplinary performance art, western literature & philosophy, ethics & human rights, psychedelic science & humanities, palliative care & dying, technology, mystical experience, dark comedy, and art. I am a passionate advocate of the liberal arts and have organized several groundbreaking and enduring projects that support interdisciplinary discourse.
I have presented papers at a host of academic conferences including: the annual meeting of the American Academy of Religion (AAR), The American Philosophical Association (APA), The International Symposia for Contemplative Studies, The Annual Meeting of Comparative & Continental Philosophy, The Annual Meeting of the Society for Asian & Comparative Philosophy, and more. I have also been invited to give lectures at institutions such as: The Rubin Museum of Art, The Asia Society in Houston, The Wang Center at Stonybrook University, The STRAND Bookstore, and elsewhere.
The details of my work can found in the pages of this website. Enjoy!
Peace, Love, and Chicken Grease,