Shamanism, Spirituality And Altered States with Roger Walsh, M.D., Ph.D.

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“At the contemplative core,” says Roger Walsh, “the great religions are road maps for inducing transcendent states of consciousness.” And shamanism, one of the most ancient and direct forms of religious experience, may be “a viable technology for inducing altered states for allowing people to access the intuitive wisdom within.” Walsh compares psychedelic and “genuine” mystical experiences, and delves into the use of psychoactive substances in both their original sacred contexts and in modern life. Not to be missed by anyone with an interest in shamanism, mysticism or altered states of consciousness. (hosted by Michael Toms)


Roger Walsh, M.D., Ph.D., is professor of psychiatry, philosophy, and anthropology, as well as adjunct professor of religious studies at the University of California at Irvine.

He's the author many books including:

To learn more about the work of Roger Walsh go to

Topics Explored in This Dialogue

  • How do the great religions provide road maps for transcendent states of consciousness
  • How can shamanism allow access to the intuitive wisdom within
  • How do psychedelic experiences compare to "genuine" mystical experiences

Host: Michael Toms           Interview Date: 12/17/1990        Program Number: 2228

Music Included

From Album: Following the Circle
Artist: Dik Darnell
1989 Etherean Music #ECD 70012

From Album: Tales of the Sun People
Artist: Tim Clark
1990 Hearts of Space #HS11017-2

From Album: Dreamtime Return
Artist: Steve Roach
1989 Fortuna Records #2CD 18055-2