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2023 Science and the Wholeness of Life

Cortona Week 2023 Programme

The 2023 edition Cortona Week will take place between the Sunday morning July 16 and Sunday July 23 in the beautiful Certosa di Pontignano, near Siena, Tuscany, Italy. The Week’s theme is Science and the Wholeness of Life

All lectures include discussion; the afternoon is reserved to workshops (with Wednesday afternoon free). Breakfast till 9.00, lunch at 13.00, dinner at 20.00

Sunday 16 July 2023

Arrival and Registration at front desk: get your room and check Workshop List

18:45-20:00Presentation of the Workshops Leaders

20:00 Dinner – every night at same hour


Monday 17 July 2023

09:00-09:20Opening presentation by Chairman Pier Luigi Luisi

9:30-10:15Brother Guidalberto Bormolini confraternita San Leonardo – “Our
participation to the cosmic dance: spirit consciousness and mystery

10:15-10:45 – Coffee Break

10:45-11:45 – Students interview speakers

12:00-13:00Break out group discussion

Tuesday 18 July 2023

09:00-09:45Let’s share new thoughts for a regener-ActionBarbara Nappini, Slow Food Italy

9:45-10:30 – Coffee Break

10:30-11:15The Earth re-news its body rapidly – Marko Pogacnik, UNESCO Artist for Peace

Wednesday 19th July 2023

09:00-09:45Feeling of mind: from CELL to SELF – Daniela Lucangeli, University of Padova

09:45-10:30 – Coffee Break

10:30-11:15On epigenetics and consciousnessErnesto Burgio, European Cancer and Environment Research Institute

Afternoon : Free – Optional excursions to Siena and/or Florence, Dinner (free) available in the hotel

Thursday 20 July 2023

09:00-09:45Contemplative science insights on the flexibility of the mind and the plasticity of the brainAntonino Raffone, Sapienza University of Rome

09:45-10:30 – Coffee Break

10:30-11:15 – The meaning of life and origin of consciousnessFederico Faggin, Federico and Elvia Faggin Foundation

Friday 21 July 2023

09:00-09:45Complex Systems and Emotional Sentience – Katherine Peil Kauffman, EFS International

09:45-10:30 – Coffee Break

10:30-11:15 – Changing the world, one child at a timeGiovanni Volpe, Still I Rise

21:15-22:30 – Flash Presentation by the partecipants (*)

Saturday 22 July 2023

09:00-09:45The Light and Shadow of Historical Trauma: Art as Visual Conscience of SocietyPumla Gobodo-Madikizela, Stellenbosch University

09:45-10:30 – Coffee Break

10:30-11:15Do we need God in the 21st Century? – Stuart Kauffman, ISB Institute for System Biology

18:00 onwards – Evening/Night Party – ask and collaborate with Tony Majdalani

Sunday 23 July 2023

Last breakfast together
luggage please out of the room

10:30-11:30Cortona Association annual assembly All welcome

Departure before Lunch – Lunch at Certosa possible (self-pay)

See You NeXT year

(*) Max. 10 min. each, and if you wish to participate, send name and a subject to the Cortona staff mailto:staff@cortonafriends.org


These will be held in parallel in the afternoon in three distinct shifts:
15.00-16.15; 16.45-18.00 and 18.30-19.45.
There is the morning one held from 7.30-8.15
In addition the ATELIER is always open.

On Wednesday the afternoon will be free (only the lectures in the morning, no workshops in the afternoon). Dinner served in the hotel for those who stay.

How to select your workshop? Choose By Web, communicate by email.
Each Workshop is unequivocally characterized as by a label, e.g. M2, A2, F6 etc.
Important! You should indicate the desired workshop(s) t the time of registration -or immediately after- directly at staff@cortonafriends.org

Distribution of the participants will be communicated by web and it will be posted in the gazebo before the beginning of the meeting.

The workshop(s) is to be maintained during the entire week (please no free jumping from one workshop to the other).

The working rooms indicated below may undergo some adjustment in situ.


M1: VARUN AGARWAL and VASUDEVA RAO, Bhaktivedanta Institute, Kolkata, India, Morning meditation, EVERY MORNING, OUTSIDE CHIOSTRO PRINCIPALE


ATELIER, (always open, by appointment)-limited to 15 people

A1 ANDREA SCHNEIDER, artist in Zurich, Sculpting marble and alabaster, every day (atelier)-OUTSIDE IN GIARDINO ITALIANO

A2 HONG ZHANG, Artist, Rome Italy and Dalian China, Painting together, SALA FOCOLARE

A3 SIMONE FERRERO, Italian Artist and Innovator, Mosaics Creations in Certosa, outside IN GIARDINO ITALIANO


FA1 JORG RASCHE, psychologist, Berlin: Psychological orientation, one orientation workshop unit on Monday the 17.th, SALA LOGGIA, then 1h single conversations with participants, one at a time, per appointment.

FA2: SUSAN EIRICH, Earthfire Institute, Idaho, USA: Reconnection Ecology: Storytelling Our Way to a Livable Planet, three workshop units, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday SALA CARATELLI

FA3: ANNA BACCHIA, Honor Guest of Cortona week, Consciousness Institute, An Evolution coherent with the Life we are, two workshop units, Monday and Tuesday, SALA PALIO


SA1: SHAMS ANWARI ALHOSSEYNI, University of Köln, Germany, on Islamic calligraphy, every day exc. weds SALA PALIO

SA2: HORTENSE REINTJENS, ethnologist and theologian, Köln, Germany, with a workshop On Philosophy and Ethics: Hannah Arendt (1906-1975) and Emmanuel Levinas (1906-1995), two workshop units Tuesday and Thursday, SALA VERANDA

SA3:  DORIS LAESSER STILLWATER and MICHAEL STILLWATER, Helsinki, Finland, Transformational breathwork techniques, every day exc. weds) SALA RIUNIONI

SA4: MARKO POGACNIK: Spiritual ecology of the surroundings, Monday and Wednesday, meet at the Caffè


TA1: OTTAVIO ROSATI, (director of IPOD PLAYS Psychodrama School) Rome, Italy. Workshop on the new technique “Living Assemblages”. These are dynamic-transmutative compositions of objects, toys, photographs, letters and fragments of pre-existing works. Tuesday and Thursday SALA VERANDA

TA2: FRANCO GIOVANNELLI, INAF- Istituto di Astrofisica e Planetologia Spaziali, Roma, The Impact of Space Experiments on Our Knowledge of the Physics of the Universe (Ethical and social responsibility of scientists), Emeritus Senior Scientist at INAF, Istituto di Astrofisica e Planetologia Spaziali, Roma. three workshops units, Tuesday Thursday and Friday SALA PALIO

TA3: TONY MAJDALANI, Musician, Zurich, Drumming as self-experience and communication, every day (exc. weds), OUTSIDE IN THE FRUTTETO

TA4:  IRENE REINTJENS, artist, Italy, dance workshop, Uniting Diversity in Dance, three times-and final dance, OUTSIDE CHIOSTRO CONVERSI