Podcast 434 – “The Metaphysics of the Psychedelic Experience”


Guest speaker: Bernardo Kastrup

Bernardo KastrupPROGRAM NOTES:

[NOTE: All quotations are by Bernardo Kastrup.]

“It is not the mind that is in the body. It is the other way around. It’s the body that is in the mind.”

“In the same way that there is nothing to a whirlpool but water, I claim there is nothing to a brain-body system but consciousness.”

“The psychedelic trance allows us to ‘see the stars at noon’ because it simply eclipses the sun of egoic-awareness. It reduces the obfuscation and allows us to see more.”

“I believe that the key insight from the psychedelic experience, the key metaphysical insight about it, is not what the nature of the psychedelic realm is. In fact, I think the key insight is about the nature of our everyday reality.”


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Bernardo Kastrup’s Web Site

Why Materialism Is Baloney: How true skeptics know there is no death and fathom answers to life, the universe, and everything by Bernardo Kastrup

Bernardo Kastrup’s Youtube Channel

Posted in Bernardo Kastrup, Books, Consciousness, Death, Psychedelics.


  1. ps If the heavy weights are in the brain, then my way of speaking/ writing still adheres somewhat to the old Logos. Old ways of speaking die hard, cheers.

  2. What a treat, this Psychedelic Saloon, Lorenzo! I usually listen to it during manual labour. I was lifting heavy weights today, while listening to Bernardo Kastrup. I realized those heavy weights were in my brain and not in some outside material world….it sure made my work easier. 😉 We all have some profound insights during our little short human life, but it takes a clear diciplined intelligence like Bernardo’s to put them all together in a coherent picture, delivering strong arguments along the way against the prevailing Logos. Here in The Netherlands, by way of a US podcast, we recieved the message that was spoken originally 80 km from where I live!

  3. groovy talk. i usually cook or wash dishes while listening to the Salon but this one was so far out, i had to sit down to soak it all in…

    if i am correct in my understanding of what was being said by Mr. Kastrup, it can basically be boiled down to that great quote by Bill Hicks “Today a young man on acid realized that all matter is merely energy condensed to a slow vibration, that we are all one consciousness experiencing itself subjectively, there is no such thing as death, life is only a dream, and we are the imagination of ourselves.” 😉

  4. Thanks Bernardo for so carefully walking us through your reasoning. This talk has really rocked my world.

  5. Fantastic, marvelous, profound, fun, engaging. What a discovery. Thank you Lorenzo and Bernardo! Such vivid and accessible metaphors offered to access such slippery, complex topics. I know it’s “just” a talk but this will have a real and lasting impact on my life. Now I gotta go check out some of Bernardo’s books…

  6. I crave this kind of talk, especially in the context of psychedelic explorations.

    Beautifully rendered Bernardo! Thank you for taking the time to create this presentation, and thank you Lorenzo for entering it into the “Record”.

    As far as the metaphor of the river vs the ocean. The river has the whirlpool, but the ocean has waves.

  7. I’ll echo what everyone else said about this being a fascinating podcast, but I have to add, I found Bernardo’s voice to be extremely relaxing. One of the best ASMR experiences I’ve had recently.

  8. Guys, it is extremely gratifying for me to read these comments. I always thought that writing books would already be worthwhile if they changed ONE person’s life for the better. So the journey so far has been just overwhelming. Thank you all, especially Lorenzo for giving me the opportunity.

    Steven, regarding the ‘So what?’, a perfectly valid question, I have written about it here: http://www.bernardokastrup.com/2014/09/does-it-matter-whether-all-is-in.html. I write even more extensively about it in my upcoming book ‘Brief Peeks Beyond.’

    Glum, you are right: I made a mistake in the first recording pass and then corrected it an hour later or so (the wonders of GarageBand). It’s still my voice, just not the same vibe. You picked it up.

    Cheers, Bernardo.

  9. Thank you very much, Lorenzo and Bernardo! This podcast has a great impact on my life and the last episode is just astonishing. I feel like someone finally managed to put in words all my subtle and ‘unconcious’ psychedelic realizations. Bernardo’s philosophy has an unique balance of coherence, elegance and simplicity. So well refined, so elaborate and detailed and yet concise – it fits almost entirely in a single podcast talk. I immediately bought and read the mentioned book and I’m just blown away. I’ve been waiting for this feeling for a long time.

  10. Also, if consciousness is really just a whirlpool of brain activity, who/what is “listening” to the resonance? The “whirlpool” itself?

  11. This is extremely fascinating, I have many new ideas to ponder. I really like his explanation of consciousness being the resonance of brain waves.

    Take that and combine it with the fact that things on a huge scale (galaxies, etc.) looks just like things on a small scale (such as a brain). If the universe itself is the “mind of god”, then radioactivity would be his brainwaves – Thus, light is the thoughts of god. Maybe the third eye can “see” other wavelengths than the visual spectrum?

  12. as a matter of fact, what Bernardo is saying only makes sense if i just ignore the voice saying: “that the brain scan” and only listen to what Barnardo’s voice is saying.
    the sentence “that the brain scan” (or scans?) doesnt really fit into the sentence. how did this enter the audiofile? :’)

  13. at 45:44 when Bernardo is talking, you hear a voice say:
    “that the brain scan”. i feel this voice suddenly sounds very different asif someone else is saying it, and i also feel that the sentence is not what Bernardo wanted to say.
    tinfoil hat much? idunno but that voice sounds VERY different IMO

  14. Thank you, Lorenzo. Thank you, Bernardo. The talk had a very Alan Watts feel to it. While I love Terrence, I must admit that Alan was my first and the warm heartedness and sincerity that comes through Bernardo (even digitized Bernardo) is simply joyous. I will, however, fulfill my role as scamp and get straight to the question. So what? Big deal. So I’m mind, not material. Now what? Please understand that it is out of respect for such a clear model that i pose the question. For me, building my own models is fun, but the real joy comes from the practical application of the model in what Bernardo calls consensus reality. Gee whiz, I love this stuff. Lastly, and dircetly to Lorenzo. Fear not friend. As a line cook in a corporate restaurant, I can assure you that the good work has spilled out of the dorms altogether and even die hard Patriots fans are finding a little time to talk about Big Mind. Love y’all.

  15. Hi Lorenzo, thanks for putting out all this wonderful audio. Since you have a background/presumed interest in electrical engineering (and also shamanism) you may be interested in this youtube video by Dan Winter called “Life-Force Design and Sacred Geometry in Architecture”. Cheers. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VBnj_iQvhSI

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