How to Distinguish Between a Religious Experience and Psychosis

There are possibly many ways in which we can define a religious experience. We need to ask ourselves: what features should such an experience exemplify? There is also a difficulty in trying to ascertain whether a certain experience is pathological in nature. For reasons which will become clear, I will be using the term religious…View Post

Sigmund Freud’s Perspective on the Mystical Experience

In 1927, the French dramatist Romain Rolland wrote a letter to the founder of psychoanalysis, Sigmund Freud, in which he coined the phrase ‘oceanic feeling’. It is oceanic because the experience seems to be “without perceptible limits”. Rolland believed that this feeling of ‘the eternal’ was a religious feeling independent of any organised religion, but…View Post

DMT and the Pineal Gland: A Sceptic’s View

Comedian, UFC commentator and podcaster Joe Rogan talked about DMT on the Opie & Anthony show in 2007. His descriptions of the craziness of DMT were well-received. A clip of the enthusiastic spiel was uploaded to YouTube, and it currently has over 4 million views. News about DMT was reaching far and wide. However, so…View Post

Alien Abductions and DMT Experiences: The Birth Trauma Hypothesis

Alien abduction and DMT experiences can sometimes share a very similar character, to the point where the similarity can no longer be considered a coincidence. The alien abduction experience, more often than not, features abduction by extra-terrestrial beings who perform a forced medical examination or procedure on the abductee. The abductee may be lying on…View Post

Scientific Explanations of the Near-Death Experience

There has been a lot of mystery surrounding what is known as near-death experiences or NDEs. The term was coined in psychiatrist Raymond Moody’s popular book Life After Life (1975), in which he detailed people’s testimonials of their NDEs. Moody interviewed 150 people who experienced an NDE as a result of being clinically dead or nearly…View Post