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Utne Reader editor Christian Williams hosts this podcast that explores the nature of consciousness through art, culture, and spirituality. Read more in the Abstract Notions blog.


Episode 4 - Alan Goltl and Sensory Deprivation Tanks

October 23, 2015: In the fourth episode of the Abstract Notions podcast, Utne Reader editor Christian Williams discusses the history and benefits of sensory deprivation tanks with Alan Goltl, proprietor of TankHouse Float & Massage in Wichita, Kansas. Additionally, they discuss Alan's other explorations into altered states of consciousness, which include ayahuasca, lucid dreaming, and a two-week darkness retreat in Thailand.

Music clip: "9:01" by Floating Spirits from the album Earth Tones (Free Music Archive, licensed under Creative Commons).

More on Sensory Deprivation
Float-Tank Therapy: Experiencing Sensory Deprivation
Hearing Things: When Auditory Hallucinations Take Over the Mind


Episode 3 - Zoe Helene and the Psychedelic Renaissance

June 5, 2015: In the third episode of the Abstract Notions podcast, Utne Reader editor Christian Williams discusses the role of women in the psychedelic renaissance with Zoe Helene, an environmental activist and wildlife advocate who has started a women's advocacy group in the psychedelic community called Cosmic Sister.

Music clip: "Ikaro de Proteccion" by Don Evangelino Murayay from the album El Canto del Tiempo/Ayahuasca Ikaros (Above Love Records, 2007).

More on the Healing Power of Psychedelics
Amazon Ayahuasca Adventure (Photo Gallery)
Medicinal Uses for Psychedelic Drugs


Episode 2 - Robert Waggoner and Lucid Dreaming

April 30, 2015: In the second episode of the Abstract Notions podcast, Utne Reader editor Christian Williams discusses the fascinating world of lucid dreams (conscious awareness of the dream state) with lucid dreaming expert Robert Waggoner, co-author of Lucid Dreaming: Plain and Simple. Their conversation includes some background on what scientific research has revealed about lucid dreaming, tips and techniques for increased lucid dreaming, and discussion of the healing potential of lucid dreams.
Music clip: "All I Have to Do is Dream" by The Everly Brothers.

More on Dreaming
Meeting in the Dream World
Finding a Dream's Meaning


Episode 1 - Chris Kilham and Ayahuasca

January 13, 2015: In the first episode of the Abstract Notions podcast, Utne Reader editor Christian Williams discusses the sacred Amazonian plant brew ayahuasca with medicine hunter and educator Chris Kilham, author of The Ayahuasca Test Pilots Handbook. Over the course of their conversation, Williams tries to find out if ayahuasca is right for him, and Kilham talks about his spiritual approach to the plant as well as the logistics of traveling to the Amazon and making sure you're in safe hands. Learn more about Chris Kilham at www.medicinehunter.com.

Music clip: "Llamando la Mareacion" by Don Evangelino Murayay from the album El Canto del Tiempo/Ayahuasca Ikaros (Above Love Records, 2007).

More on Ayahuasca
What Is the Ayahuasca Experience?
Is Ayahuasca Right for You?

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