Article (Scientific journals)
A neurophenomenological approach to non-ordinary states of consciousness: hypnosis, meditation, and psychedelics.
Timmermann, Christopher; Bauer, Prisca R; Gosseries, Olivia et al.
2023In Trends in Cognitive Sciences, 27 (2), p. 139 - 159
Peer Reviewed verified by ORBi


Full Text
Author postprint (2.82 MB)

All documents in ORBi are protected by a user license.

Send to


Keywords :
agency; altered states of consciousness; hypnosis; meditation; psychedelics; self; Hallucinogens; Humans; Consciousness; Brain; Hallucinogens/pharmacology; Meditation; Hypnosis; Clinical practices; Dynamic nature; Neural dynamics; Psychedelic; ]+ catalyst; Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology; Experimental and Cognitive Psychology; Cognitive Neuroscience
Abstract :
[en] No contemporary unifying framework has been provided for the study of non-ordinary states of consciousness (NSCs) despite increased interest in hypnosis, meditation, and psychedelics. NSCs induce shifts in experiential contents (what appears to the experiencer) and/or structure (how it appears). This can allow the investigation of the plastic and dynamic nature of experience from a multiscale perspective that includes mind, brain, body, and context. We propose a neurophenomenological (NP) approach to the study of NSCs which highlights their role as catalysts of transformation in clinical practice by refining our understanding of the relationships between experiential (subjective) and neural dynamics. We outline the ethical implications of the NP approach for standard conceptions of health and pathology as well as the crucial role of experience-based know-how in NSC-related research and application.
Disciplines :
Neurosciences & behavior
Author, co-author :
Timmermann, Christopher ;  Centre for Psychedelic Research, Division of Psychiatry, Department of Brain Sciences, Imperial College London, London, UK. Electronic address:
Bauer, Prisca R ;  Department of Psychosomatic Medicine and Psychotherapy, University Medical Center Freiburg, Faculty of Medicine, University of Freiburg, Freiburg, Germany
Gosseries, Olivia   ;  Université de Liège - ULiège > GIGA > GIGA Consciousness - Coma Science Group
Vanhaudenhuyse, Audrey   ;  Centre Hospitalier Universitaire de Liège - CHU > > Service d'algologie - soins palliatifs
Vollenweider, Franz;  Centre for Psychiatric Research, Department of Psychiatry, Psychotherapy and Psychosomatics, Psychiatric Hospital Zürich, University of Zürich, Switzerland
Laureys, Steven  ;  Centre Hospitalier Universitaire de Liège - CHU > > Centre du Cerveau²
Singer, Tania;  Social Neuroscience Laboratory, Max Planck Society, Berlin, Germany
Mind and Life Europe (MLE) ENCECON Research Group
Antonova, Elena ;  Division of Psychology, Department of Life Sciences, College of Health, Medicine and Life Sciences, Brunel University London, London, UK, Department of Psychology, Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience, King's College London, London, UK
Lutz, Antoine ;  Eduwell team, Lyon Neuroscience Research Center, INSERM U1028, CNRS UMR5292, Lyon 1 University, Lyon, France. Electronic address:
 These authors have contributed equally to this work.
Language :
Title :
A neurophenomenological approach to non-ordinary states of consciousness: hypnosis, meditation, and psychedelics.
Publication date :
February 2023
Journal title :
Trends in Cognitive Sciences
Publisher :
Elsevier Ltd, England
Volume :
Issue :
Pages :
139 - 159
Peer reviewed :
Peer Reviewed verified by ORBi
Funding text :
This research was supported by Mind and Life Europe , the LABEX CORTEX of Université de Lyon ( ANR-11-LABX-0042 ) within the 'Investissements d'Avenir' program ( ANR-11-IDEX-0007 ) (to A.L.), by a European Research Council grant (ERC-Consolidator 617739-BRAINandMINDFULNESS ) (A.L.), BIAL Foundation ( 260/16 ; P.R.B. and A.L.; Grant Nos 261/18 and 344/20 to O.G.), the EU Horizon 2020 Research and Innovation Program under Marie Skłodowska-Curie grant agreement 749582 (Neural Correlates of Self/NeuCoSe; P.R.B) and under the Specific Grant Agreement No. 945539 (Human Brain Project SGA3), University and University Hospital of Liège, Benoit Foundation (Bruxelles), and King's College London (King's Together Fund research grant 'Towards Experiential Neuroscience Paradigm'; E.A.), the Belgian Foundation Against Cancer (Grant Nos 2017064 and C/2020/1357 ), the Télévie, Wallonia as part of a program of the BioWin Health Cluster framework and the Swiss Neuromatrix Foundation (Grant No 2020-0201 to F.X.V.). C.T. is funded by donors of the Centre for Psychedelic Research ; O.G. and S.L. are supported by the Fonds de la Recherche Scientifique (FRS)/Fonds National de la Recherche Scientifique (FNRS) . The authors would like to thank Adeline Deward (RISE Illustration) for professional rendering of the figures.
Available on ORBi :
since 17 February 2023


Number of views
119 (4 by ULiège)
Number of downloads
50 (0 by ULiège)

Scopus citations®
Scopus citations®
without self-citations


Similar publications

Contact ORBi