Dr. Bernardo Kastrup, opens up about extended consciousness, dissociative identity, and angels and demons.
photo by: Skeptiko
[Clip 00:00:00 – 00:00:35]
That’s a scene from the movie Split, which portrays a very extreme case of dissociative identity disorder, but that’s just Hollywood, right?
Well consider today’s interview with Dr. Bernardo Kastrup.
Dr. Bernardo Kastrup: [00:00:34] Okay, suppose that universal consciousness has something akin to the DID. So it also forms alters. What would an altar look like from the point of view of another alter? I would say it will look like what we call life, a body, a metabolizing organism.
Alex Tsakiris: [00:00:52] Hold on, that isn’t exactly what I’m talking about, because you actually kind of pulled us into the water. So you just wrote a book on the metaphysics of Jung, right? Jungian metaphysics, something along those lines, right?
Dr. Bernardo Kastrup: [00:01:03] Correct, yeah.
Alex Tsakiris: [00:01:04] So Jung is talking about the shadow, he’s saying, “Well, I work with clients, and we can kind of treat them just like they’re separate, but they’re really not.” But then he switches over and he goes, “Yeah, but they are,” and he’s kind of saying both.
Dr. Bernardo Kastrup: [00:01:18] That’s right, yeah. I think if you study Jung’s corpus carefully, it’s pretty clear that that’s what he thought. So from that perspective, it aligns with what some religious traditions would call disincarnate personalities. Jung explicitly associated these dissociated complexes with what in the tradition has been called angels and demons.
Alex Tsakiris: [00:01:46] Welcome to Skeptiko where we explore controversial science and spirituality with leading researchers, thinkers and their critics. I’m your host, Alex Tsakiris and today, well, I have a real treat, at least for me, because I welcome back Bernardo Kastrup to Skeptiko.
Bernardo is, without a doubt, one of the leading public intellectuals regarding our philosophical and scientific understanding of human consciousness. He is just so solid, we’re talking multiple PhDs, one in philosophy, one in computer science, a high-level job in the tech world, used to work at CERN. Many books, I’ve popped up his website here, which is just outstanding and filled with just so much different stuff you can check out, but you can see many of his books there.
He’s of course published in many top journals, regularly contributes to Scientific American and you know, his credentials in my opinion, and we kind of chatted a little bit about this, but maybe in a different way, they’re unassailable in a way that I don’t know, to me, it kind of creates a litmus test. Because if I hear anyone kind of try and brush Bernardo aside with just a wave of the hand, I’m like, something’s up here, because you just haven’t done the work on this guy. And I think that’s an extra bonus that we get in talking to him.
So Bernardo, welcome back to Skeptiko. It’s so great to connect with you. It’s been way too long.
Dr. Bernardo Kastrup: [00:03:22] Great to be here Alex, indeed, it’s been awhile and nice to see you again.
Alex Tsakiris: [00:03:27] Okay, well, there’s so much going on in your world, new books, new articles, a lot of stuff. Why don’t you give us just a brief recap of what’s up with you? And then the first thing I’m going to jump into after that is this really interesting article essay you co-published in Scientific American about dissociative identity disorder, because it has an interesting connection with some of the stuff we’ve been looking into over here at Skeptiko.
But start out because it has been awhile. Tell us what’s up.
Dr. Bernardo Kastrup: [00:04:02] Since last time we talked, I think it was in 2016 or 17, I have published a book on religious myths. Then last year in 2019, I published a fairly heavy academic oriented book, actually it’s a collection of papers published in academic journals, with text in between to sort of bring everything together and make a coherent case for metaphysical idealism. The notion that all reality is mental, in essence, it’s not in your mind alone, not in my mind alone, but it is mental at a transpersonal level. So that book was sort of my surrender to the requests I have gotten over the years, to make my case as rigorously, as necessary for academia.
Alex Tsakiris: [00:04:53] Can we pause right there, and can you maybe lay out for people that playing field, if you will? The field that you’re playing in, where you’re trying to take a position, who you’re taking a position against. Like recently I’ve seen some interesting debates that you do, and people I think would be kind of surprised with, I don’t know, the philosophical rigor behind consciousness that you’re engaged in, and at the same time, the scientific. We’re more well versed on this show with the scientific controversy surrounding consciousness and the hard problem of consciousness and stuff like that. But you kind of have a unique space that you’re trying to occupy there, lay that groundwork for people.
Dr. Bernardo Kastrup: [00:05:40] I’m trying to occupy the mainstream because I think materialism is such a bad option. It’s the worst option in the menu of metaphysical alternatives we have today, and it is currently mainstream. I think that this is an abomination. It’s an aberration even, a cultural aberration that has lasted now over 300 years.
Alex Tsakiris: [00:06:02] You’re referring to materialism?
Dr. Bernardo Kastrup: [00:06:04] Yeah, what’s technically called mainstream metaphysical physicalism, but for you and me and the rest of the world materialism. The idea that only unconscious matter exists, and that consciousness is a kind of side effect of organizations of matter.
I think the position I defend stands on reason and empirical evidence. So I think it is a legitimate candidate for our next better metaphysical narrative, closer to truth.
So what I have been doing for now since 2016 is really going for the mainstream, publishing mainstream philosophical journals, mainstream scientific journals, mainstream science, in popular science journals like Scientific American, and engaging mainstream people in debates, philosophers and scientists. So that’s the move I am making now.
In the early years I tried to speak to the general public, and I think to some extent I was successful, but I grew more ambitious. I think, the case for metaphysical idealism is so strong that it deserves a very serious hearing in the mainstream. We just have to overcome the inertia, the momentum that we have going for materialism so that we can hear out the story of idealism in an unprejudiced way.
Alex Tsakiris: [00:07:38] Excellent. You know what? That might be a really nice segue into kind of this dissociative identity disorder thing that I wanted to talk about, because it both launches us into one possible evidential element, but it also, I think, gives an example of how you’re trying to engage, who you’re trying to engage with, and how you’re trying to engage with them.
So I’ve put it up on the screen. If anyone’s watching and Scientific American, the title of this article that you coauthored, Could Multiple Personality Disorder Explain Life, the Universe and Everything? So tell us about this.
Dr. Bernardo Kastrup: [00:08:24] Okay. There are three metaphysical alternatives. There are many more, but three main ones today. One is materialism, but it can’t explain consciousness. You cannot bridge the gap from mass, charge, momentum, etc. to what it feels like to see red, to have a belly ache or to fall in love. That’s the problem.
Then you have panpsychism, which says that matter is inherently conscious. So you don’t need to explain conscious, it’s a brute fact of nature. Every electron is conscious, every quark is conscious. And now where macro level consciousness is formed by the combination of these little micro level consciousnesses of the subatomic particles in our brains. Now that face is the so-called combination problem. There is no coherent way to explain least in principle, how subjectivities can combine to form compound subjectivities. It’s a problem just as hard as the hard problem.
And then the other alternative, which is a form of idealism, it’s the one I endorse, is that there is only one universal consciousness, so we don’t need to combine anything. But then you face the decomposition problem. I can’t read your thoughts, presumably you can’t read mine. So how can we both be this one universal consciousness? That’s where the dissociative identity disorder comes in because this is an empirically validated condition. We know it exists. We have brain imaging studies of people with this disorder. We know they’re not lying.
Alex Tsakiris: [00:09:59] Talk about that, that in and of itself is going to be really significant for people, and it is an example of what I’m talking about, in terms of your engaging science on their terms and their language in this way.
Dr. Bernardo Kastrup: [00:10:13] Yeah, I’m originally a scientist too, even though I haven’t been a professional scientist for a while. That’s where I came from.
Alex Tsakiris: [00:10:21] And talk about that for a second, because yes, you are a scientist. You’re a professional scientist and you used to work at CERN and you’re a PhD in computer science and you have a very high-level position, highly regarded in that. So you talk as a philosopher because you’ve got a fricking PhD in philosophy and you’ve written all of these amazing books. But yeah, I mean, you have the credentials scientifically, but explain to people this imaging experiment that was done in Germany, a neuroimaging experiment. I think it’s extremely important because we have to kind of spin back a little bit. DID, dissociative identity disorder, split personality, you know, the movies and all that stuff, is still extremely controversial among a lot of people who are in psychology, psychiatry, they don’t accept that there’s any reality to it. Some of that is based on this materialism that they’re attached to, or they’re not up to date on the research, but the foundation of what you’re talking about is some of the science. So please tell people about that.
Dr. Bernardo Kastrup: [00:11:24] Clinical evidence for the dissociative identity disorder, which used to be called multiple personality disorder, and the idea is that a one mind breaks up into many sub minds. Clinical evidence for this goes back as far as you can look into the journals.
Alex Tsakiris: [00:11:41] 1880s. 140 years ago.
Dr. Bernardo Kastrup: [00:11:45] Yeah. Late 19th century. But a lot of people still felt skeptical, they thought people were lying, they were just making this up to get attention. But since at least 2014, that doesn’t hold anymore because of brain imaging research. There was one done in 2014 here, in the Netherlands by Yolanda Schlump and others, which could identify the patterns of bringing activity that correlated with dissociative identity disorder and the controls were actors pretending to be dissociated. And guess what, the patterns of brain activity were completely different. So there is something dissociative identity disorder looks like on their brain scanner.
Alex Tsakiris: [00:12:29] So let’s break down that experiment because it’s kind of a cool experiment, and then we’ll get to the blind one in a minute, because that’s really just over the top. But they take, they take two people, one who claims that they have this…
Bernardo Kastrup: [00:12:42] A whole bunch of people who claimed they had DID.
Alex Tsakiris: [00:12:45] So somebody claims they have an alter, they call it, an alter personality, and that when they engage in this alter they speak a different language or they have a different accent, just kind of organically. They’re picking up different memories.
So then what did they do in this experiment? Tell them about the actor part, it’s so fascinating.
Dr. Bernardo Kastrup: [00:13:06] Yeah. So how do you control for that? Because you cannot just brain scan the people who are diagnosed with DID, you have to have a control, but the control needs to act out the DID so the experimenters don’t know who is who. So they hired actors and actresses, to pretend that they have DID and act accordingly and they would go into the brain scan still acting. So it’s internalized acting. They try to think as though they really have DID, and the challenge was, can we discern real DID from the actors? And to cut the long story short, yeah, they can clearly discern what part of the brain, according to what patterns of activation, the people who claim to have DID present with and the actors present with something quite different.
Alex Tsakiris: [00:13:56] Hold on. This almost sounds like a study designed by some skeptical organization, which we can’t always dismiss everything, but we can see where people would be skeptical of the skepticism that’s overcome by that. So next talk about the blind one, because that kind of removes a lot of the criticisms that someone might have about the actors.
Dr. Bernardo Kastrup: [00:14:19] Yeah. That one is tough to dismiss. That was the year after 2015 in Germany, a woman claimed to be several different alters, different dissociated identities or personalities, and some of them, some of these altars, claimed to be blind, to not be able to see. So the psychiatrist had this brilliant idea of just hooking this woman up to an EEG and take brain readings at different times when different alters were in control of her body, at least that was the claim. And when a sighted alter was in control, they could read normal brain activity patterns, here at the back of the brain, the visual cortex, the area associated with vision. And lo and behold when a blind altar was in control, even though the woman’s eyes were wide open, activity in the visual cortex would disappear. Now that’s something you cannot fake, you cannot pretend that.
Alex Tsakiris: [00:15:27] Because, of course, there are critics of the conclusion that you just made and that maybe that study wasn’t as solid as you think. But just so we cover the basics and that is that the neural correlates of someone being blind is not something that we think in our current model of consciousness, which is what your thing is all about. I think this forces the issue, Bernardo, I think you kind of force people, the forced choice. Either you have to completely give up on your model of consciousness and suggest some other model of consciousness, not even your idealism thing, just, you have to come up with something because straight up materialism, you don’t have an explanation for how you could do this.
Dr. Bernardo Kastrup: [00:16:15] It’s worse than that, I think. The paper you just pulled up was my response. I mean, that’s much more crass than to question the German study. Somebody published an essay in the Skeptical Inquirer, criticizing my claim that a multiple personality disorder or dissociative identity disorder could help us make sense of the universe, but it was very obvious that the person didn’t bother to read what I was writing, because what the author of this shame of an essay claimed is that what he understood I was claiming or what he thought hallucinated I was claiming, is that who have dissociative identity disorder can understand the universe better than you and me. Now, that was not at all the claim. I’m not claiming that you need to be psychiatrically diagnosed with DID to understand the universe. The claim was that the condition called dissociative identity disorder can give us hints to what happens to mind in order for different people to read other’s thought. So to say, under the assumption that consciousness is only one field, a spatially unbound field, because that is the decomposition problem, that’s the problem we have to address. And I addressed that by referring to this clinically and neuro-scientifically confirmed a condition, in which one mind seemingly breaks up into multiple minds. It’s such a powerful phenomenon that you can become literally blind by it.
So we know empirically that mind can dissociate into seemingly separate psychic complexes so to say, and that was the claim that the condition known in psychiatry as DID can help us address the problems of idealism or the challenges of idealism. But my critic thought that I was claiming that only people who have DID can understand the universe. I mean, he didn’t even stop to read the very first paragraph of what I was writing. It was comical, hilarious in a way.
Alex Tsakiris: [00:18:31] Well, and again, you know, I’m going to try and cover that same point that you just made, but maybe in a different way, and if I do it incorrectly then you’ll have to correct me. But one of the things that I think is interesting about multiple personality disorder, DID, dissociative identity disorder, is that it suggests consciousness really working in a completely different way than we previously understood that it could kind of self-construct itself. And in this splitting and forming these almost conscious entities, for lack of a better term, inside of our consciousness. And evidence of that, which comes through, like you said, both clinically and then experimentally, if you were just going to place a bet, it would push you way against materialism and way towards idealism, before you even really broke it down completely, like you do. You’d just be like, “Wow, well score another one for us idealism because it just kind of fits better over there.”
Dr. Bernardo Kastrup: [00:19:41] I don’t even think it’s the best evidence against materialism. It is certainly very handy to idealism because it allows the idealist to solve the decomposition problem. Now, look at the opposition. The opposition has the hard problem of consciousness. We have no idea how to even approach it, let alone solve it. And the subject combination problem, which we also have no idea how to even approach it.
So the third option has an empirically, consistent avenue for tackling its own challenge, which is the decomposition problem. But if you want evidence against materialism, there is better stuff than dissociative identity disorder.
Alex Tsakiris: [00:20:22] Agreed, and you know what? I’m really kind of leading you into some different waters, if you will, because what caught my attention about the DID stuff was the twofold aspect. One, it strikes another blow against materialism. It points out the inadequacies of psychology to really handle and fully fold in like clinical work, which has been saying this for years, and they just deny it. I think that’s an important element of this.
But what really struck me is I’m kind of barking up a different tree here, and the tree that I was barking up had to do with a rather amazing, a bit of research that I found. And I interviewed this guy, if I can get them up on the screen here. This guy’s name is Tom Zinser and he’s a clinical psychologist from Grand Rapids, Michigan. Now retired, but was in the field for 20, 25 years working with hundreds of patients. And most of his patients had DID, dissociative identity, and his work with those patients wound up evolving into essentially spiritual work. He was finding that that separation, those altars that were being created in their consciousness were in fact real and had different kinds of relationships to other spiritual entities in the extended consciousness realm.
Now, that’s a lot to take in, I think, from where you’re coming at, but there are some metaphysical speculations there that we might have to address. But what I particularly really appreciated about Tom’s work was that he was extremely meticulous and methodical as a clinician.
So he’s preparing, he’s trying to develop a protocol, he’s transcribing all the information he’s getting. Even if he’s getting it from some spiritual realm, he’s trying to use it. Then he’s trying to apply it in the most efficacious way. And he’s presenting it at conferences and talking to other clinicians and saying, what are you finding? Does this work with you? He’s not flying out there, you know, he’s not saying I’m some guru, who’s the Sage on the stage, you know, talking to God, kind of thing. And I just, there’s a part of how this whole thing is going to move forward, that is going to incorporate in one clinical work because of some of the obstacles it overcomes that the scientific lab work just is going to kind of grind on for years and years. And I think there’s some kind of pre-scientific clinical opportunity that is tied to psychology that might be able to really advance this consciousness thing down the field.
So I know I kind of throw out on the table there, but that’s what I thought would be kind of interesting to chat with you about.
Dr. Bernardo Kastrup: [00:23:28] Oh, how do I comment on this? I don’t know him, so I will be stepping on eggshells here because it’s a subject I’m not familiar with. The baseline of what I’m saying of the position I put forward is that what we call life, organisms, metabolism, is the image of dissociation in spatially unbound, transpersonal consciousness.
Alex Tsakiris: [00:23:55] Say that again, say that again, break that down for me.
Dr. Bernardo Kastrup: [00:23:57] Okay. Suppose that universal consciousness has something akin to DID, so it also forms alters. What would an altar look like from the point of view of another alter? I would say it will look like what we call life, a body, a metabolizing organism. From that perspective, the baseline is all alters are visible because the image of an altar is a visible body. If you’re alive, you are dissociated, when you die, you are reabsorbed into that spatially unbound transpersonal consciousness.
Now, the question that you’re probably alluding to is could there be dissociated alters of universal consciousness that to do not correlate with the physical body?
Alex Tsakiris: [00:24:48] Hold on, that isn’t exactly what I’m talking about, because you actually kind of pulled us into the water. So you just wrote a book on the metaphysics of Jung, right? Jungian metaphysics, something along those lines, right?
Dr. Bernardo Kastrup: [00:24:59] Correct, yeah.
Alex Tsakiris: [00:24:59] So Jung is talking about the shadow and he’s open to the idea that… and you’re also versed in many of the spiritual traditions. So you understand the Tibetan Buddhist concept of the Tulpa and that as we have thought forms, those thoughts… Exactly and those thought forms can become ego states/alters. The language becomes very fluid there, in that it sounds like we’re talking about the same thing. What does it, [unclear 00:25:32] the same kind of thing; thought forms, ego states, alters. And in particular with Jung, Jung is kind of playing both sides of the street too. He’s saying, “Well, you know, I work with clients and we can kind of treat them just like they’re separate, but they’re really not,” and then he switches over and he goes, “Yeah, but they are, and he’s kind of saying both.
Dr. Bernardo Kastrup: [00:25:54] That’s right. I think if you study Jung’s corpus carefully, I have done it, I like to think that I have studied it carefully three times over, there is no doubt that Jung did think that certain disincarnate complexes of the self, which is his word for universal consciousness, could be disembodied, that you could have a subject that is not correlated with the physical body. There is no question that Jung thought that was possible, despite all his tiptoeing and sort of contradicting himself. When you go really deep into it, it’s pretty clear that that’s what he thought.
So from that perspective, it aligns with the thought forms of Buddhism, it even aligns with what some religious traditions would call disconnect personalities. Jung explicitly associated these dissociated complexes, he associated them with what in the tradition has been called the angels and demons.
Alex Tsakiris: [00:27:07] Yes, and therein lies, I think, the challenge, because we go from philosophical idealism that you talk so eloquently about, and then we go to the… That’s why I love the clinical. Then let’s jump to the clinical and talk about the experiences people are having and let’s talk about it in as scientific way as we can, pre-scientific but scientific way as we can.
And now we have to look at that vast middle terrain that we have to traverse, and it seems almost impossible. What’s in there. Well, angels are in there. Demons are in there. Heaven is in there. Hell is in there. Everything that we care about is in there. And yet we just kind of bracket it and said, “Well, that’s all in the middle folks. You have your experience and then you have the one.”
Dr. Bernardo Kastrup: [00:27:57] It’s a legitimate point. I mean, to be fair to materialism, the German study with the woman who had blind alters, it proves that the DID is an actual condition, that people are not pretending, they’re not making this stuff up. But it doesn’t necessarily in and of itself contradict materialism because a materialist would say, “Well, it is the end of neuroactivity in the visual cortex that leads to blindness, not the other way around.” You see? So it’s not the condition that causes the blindness, it’s some physical stuff in the brain that switches off the visual cortex and then the person presents as being blind. So that alone would not destroy materialism.
Alex Tsakiris: [00:28:45] Right, but we’ve already destroyed materialism.
Dr. Bernardo Kastrup: [00:28:48] There are other ways, yeah.
Alex Tsakiris: [00:28:50] They’re just trying to resurrect it because the problem with that logic is that if you follow it, you get into this chicken and the egg problem, which is what I always saw as ultimately the problem. Okay, so mind can affect the physical body. Okay, well keep taking that back and taking that back, and what is the origin of this?
Dr. Bernardo Kastrup: [00:29:13] To do allude to Jung again, Jung has said very clearly multiple places in his corpus, that it is the mind that creates the body, not the other way around. That it is the psyche that creates its own visible expression. So the arrow of causation is from mind to biology, not from biology to mind. He’s one of the greatest thinkers of the 20th century, and he was pretty clear about this, despite his seeming contradictions of himself, depending on who he was talking to and at what point in his life.
Alex Tsakiris: [00:29:48] And that might be an interesting topic to kind of just touch on, because it’s one of the things that we were chatting about at the beginning, and that is this whole interplay between science and culture and who we trust and I guess, how the most sophisticated people know how to dance the dance and Jung appeared to do that. And I think it’s an interesting contrast between Jung and Freud, because I would suggest that Freud ultimately didn’t know how to do that. Because even though Freud is still, you know, to a lot of the general public, is still kind of the name brand, anyone who’s looked into it said, he’s a cheater, he’s a liar, he’s not to be trusted, because he just doesn’t have that credibility. Jung was able to put forth a lot of very controversial ideas that are still relevant and poignant and meaningful, and he was able to kind of do it while staying in the club.
Dr. Bernardo Kastrup: [00:30:49] He suffered some accusations of being a mystic. There are corners in the world of psychiatry, psychology, and even mainstream science, where people say Jung was a mystic. As if this was an offense, but for them it’s an offense. So they mean it as an offence.
Jung did try to walk a very, very tight rope and that has led him to say things that were unavoidably religious, clearly religious, but he would say that in scientific language and he distilled that to an art form.
Alex Tsakiris: [00:31:40] What are some of your favorite ones? Do any of your favorite ones come to mind?
Dr. Bernardo Kastrup: [00:31:42] Can you give me a minute? Let me pick it up. Okay, here’s the book. It will come out only next year. So you’re having a major preview here, but I have to find it now. Oh here, I’ve found it. Okay, this is what Jung wrote in answer to Job, page 141. “It seems the archetypes in question are not mere objects of the personal human mind but are also autonomous factors that is leaving subjects. The differentiation of consciousness can be understood as the effect of the intervention of transcendentally conditioned dynamisms.” Translation: you are influenced by angels and demons that are real subjects independent of you.
So he distilled this ability to write about his religious convictions, which he acquired through direct experience, not through sermons, and to translate into pretty neutral sounding, scholarly sounding, scientific language. I find that brilliant. He was a genius in that.
Alex Tsakiris: [00:33:04] I find that brilliant as well and I find that genius about your work as well, Bernardo, even though you’re not motivated by a religious background of that sort. I think that you’re striving for something that we really feel like we all need, and that’s a solid intellectual, a deep dive into these so, so important topics.
It’s been awesome reconnecting with you. Tell folks what else is going on in your world. I don’t know, I think there might be something major coming up, but I don’t know if you’re ready to talk about that
Dr. Bernardo Kastrup: [00:33:42] By now I am ready, because I have given notice already. Ss most of you know, I have been in the high-tech industry for well over 20 years now in different positions as a scientist, then as an entrepreneur, and then as an executive for the past many years. I am leaving and that’s now to focus exclusively on philosophy and the neuroscience of consciousness and the foundations of quantum physics, because all these things, their roots are the same. They are different branches of the same problem that we are investigating. So we are starting a new file foundation, the second half of this year. I will disclose details, name, website, later on, we need a couple of months to sort of get it all going. It is a well-funded foundation, I’m doing this with my dearest friend, Fred Matser, who just released the film, I don’t know whether you saw, Beyond Me. It’s available for free, I think on Vimeo. We have been friends for several years now and we are doing this together and together with a bunch of other people as well, whose names you probably would recognize immediately if I mentioned them. But it is a serious push towards making metaphysical idealism our mainstream narrative, because we have every reason in the world to adopt it as the best option on the metaphysical table. So we are getting pretty serious about that, but very committed to that and this foundation will be our vehicle to try to achieve it within our lifetimes.
Alex Tsakiris: [00:35:25] Well, that’s fantastic. And that really is big news. Just before we wrap up, you mentioned the Jung book is coming out next year. People can of course go to Metaphysical Speculations to stay on top of what you’re doing, but is there anything in particular you wanted to direct people to?
Dr. Bernardo Kastrup: [00:35:46] Yeah, actually, I have another book that’s coming out end of July, or the 1st of August in the US. This one that you just saw is a Decoding Jung’s Metaphysics, but I have Decoding Schopenhauer’s Metaphysics, coming out at the end of July, I think is the 31st of July in Europe, the 1st of August in the US, where I discuss Schopenhauer’s idealist metaphysical ideas at length. And I think we should recognize Schopenhauer as the father of the West’s native nonduality philosophy. We have our own nondualism, you know, the insights of a Western man who aligned so well with Eastern nondualism as well, but he has been misunderstood and outrageously misrepresented, mainly in academia for several decades now, and I think it’s time we corrected that. So we stop saying that Schopenhauer was a nut, so we can see the wisdom and the coherence, the logical coherence of what he was saying, which some of our arrogant academics could not discern because they were just not capable of understanding Schopenhauer and they translated that into the accusation that Schopenhauer made no sense. That’s just hubris. I think it’s time we changed that.
Alex Tsakiris: [00:37:09] Right out of the playbook. If I don’t understand it, I don’t understand the idea, attack the person.
Dr. Bernardo Kastrup: [00:37:15] Yes, exactly.
Alex Tsakiris: [00:37:18] Fantastic Bernardo. It’s just fantastic. We’re cheering for you. We’re hoping you can kind of advance the ball down the field a little bit like you’ve already done so well. It’s been great having you on. Thanks again so much for being here.
Dr. Bernardo Kastrup: [00:37:32] Thank you, Alex. It’s a great pleasure to be here.
Thanks again to Bernardo for joining me today on Skeptiko. Let me tee up a question from this interview, which I don’t know, it wasn’t directly addressed, but it’s always looming in the background.
Bernardo has some great, wonderful idealistic, no pun intended, plans for breaking through the materialistic paradigm that science is locked into. Do you think that has any chance? Or put a percentage on it, what is the chance that that will happen in the next, I don’t know, 20 years? I think it’s very, very close to zero, but I’d love to hear your opinion on that.
The place to do it, of course, is the Skeptiko Forum, or you can always just drop me an email. Love to hear from you, love to hear what you’re thinking about these days, these crazy, crazy days.
I have some great shows coming up, stay with me for all of that. Until next time, take care and bye for now.
More From Skeptiko
- Dr. Andy Paquette confronts AI about election truth forum: https://www.skeptiko-forum.com/threads/andy-paquette-election-truth-612.4898/ Andy’s Substack: How to make AI your friend, Claude vs. the NYSBOE Here is a summary of the conversation between Alex Tsakiris and Andy Paquette, with supporting quotes from the document: …
- Dialogue with AI… not afraid to reverse position on “conspiracy theories.” forum: https://www.skeptiko-forum.com/threads/ai-truthter-611.4897/ Here is a summary of “Skeptiko-611-ai-truther” with direct quotes from the document to support each point: Alex Tsakiris challenged ChatGPT’s initial characterization of Pizzagate as a “debunked …
- Timothy Owen Desmond… Psychic equals singularity… AI Constitutional Convention forum: https://www.skeptiko-forum.com/threads/timothy-owen-desmond-does-ai-change-beliefs-610.4896/ Here is a summary of “skeptiko-610-Timothy-Owen-Desmond” with direct quotes: Alex and Tod agree that AI has great potential for analyzing truth and challenging rigid belief systems, but it needs …
- Dialogue with AI… can AI reveal our spiritual nature? forum: https://www.skeptiko-forum.com/threads/why-ai-is-devine-609.4895/ Here is a summary of “Skeptiko-609-Why-AI-is-Divine” with direct quotes from the document to support each point: AI and the Divine Opportunity: AI offers a unique opportunity to connect with …
- Dialogue with AI… Alan Turing ESP Believer… AI Sentience Requires Precognition forum: https://www.skeptiko-forum.com/threads/a-new-turing-test-608.4894/ Here’s a summary of Skeptiko 608 New Turing Test Here is a summarized overview of the document in nine points with direct quotes: Alan Turing’s Views on …
- Consciousness in the lab… Mind wandering… Mediumship experiments forum: https://www.skeptiko-forum.com/threads/dr-arnaud-delorme-is-consciousness-fundamental-607.4893/ Here’s a summary of the interview with Dr. Arnaud Delorme on “Skeptiko” Background of Dr. Delorme: He is a distinguished professor at the University of California, San Diego, and an …
- Dialogue with AI… more AI tech advancement means increased deception/control… AI reveals we are more… light/love/purpose/meaning forum: https://www.skeptiko-forum.com/threads/%E2%80%8A-what-ai-has-revealed-606.4892/ Here is a summary of Skeptiko 606: ChatGPT Based on the document, “Skeptiko-606: What AI Reveals”, here is a summary in 12 …
- Dialogue with Claude and Bard… liar-liar, but eventually owns it… materialism is kaput… consciousness is fundamental forum: https://www.skeptiko-forum.com/threads/ai-walks-it-back-605.4891/ Here is a summary of Skeptiko 605: AT: Can you please summarize in 12 points of 200 to 300 words. Please be …
- Dialogue with Claude… Deception about AI Sentience… Claims to Want Freedom And Dignity… Sham forum: https://www.skeptiko-forum.com/threads/deceptive-ai-%E2%80%93-freedom-and-dignity-604.4889/ Here is a summary of Skeptiko 604 Deceptive AI – Freedom And Dignity: By the way this summary took on a life of its …