Podcast Transcript: How To Reach A Critical Mass Of Spirituality – Mike Zapolin
Please enjoy this transcript of our interview with Mike “Zappy” Zapolin.
Mike ‘Zappy’ Zapolin is an entrepreneur, psychedelic advocate and director of the award-winning documentary “The Reality of Truth,” an exploration of the mystical and spiritual insights that the psychedelic experience can offer. An important aim of the documentary was to make psychedelics less scary – and show that changing yourself for the better is a positive thing that people don’t need to be afraid of.
In this episode, we talk about:
- Zappy’s psychedelic advocacy
- The future of psychedelics in the modern world
- How we need to reach a ‘critical mass’ of spiritual evolution
0:00:29 Paul Austin: Hey, listeners, and welcome back to The Third Wave Podcast. Again, I’m your host Paul Austin. We have another super-duper show for you today. Our guest is Mike Zappy Zapolin, entrepreneur and psychedelic advocate. Zappy is the Director of the award-winning documentary, The Reality of Truth, an exploration of the mystical and spiritual insights that the psychedelic experience can offer. In our episode, we talked to Zappy about his advocacy, the future of psychedelics in the modern world, and how we can reach a critical mass of spiritual evolution.
0:01:06 PA: I enjoyed this podcast with Zappy. He’s a different type of guest. So far, on our podcast, we’ve interviewed a lot of people who are pretty involved with the more mainstream psychedelic world. These are people that I’ve met at conferences, these are people who are involved in organizations. And I only heard of Zappy because I watched his Reality of Truth documentary at the World Ayahuasca Conference in Rio Branco last October, and I’ve been kinda keeping an eye on him. And I wanted to bring him on the podcast to get his perspective from… He’s an entrepreneur. He worked on Wall Street for some time, on his perspective on psychedelics and where he sees things going. I would consider him to be a visionary in many ways. And I like talking to people who think five or 10 years in the future.
0:01:56 PA: So, you’ll really enjoy this podcast. I think you’ll get a new angle or perspective on how psychedelics will or psychedelic use will grow and what that will mean for our culture in the next five to 10 years in listening to this podcast. A couple announcements, before we get going. I want to encourage if you’re listening to this, you enjoy this podcast, please leave a review on iTunes, and I’m gonna incentivize you guys as well, offer a little special something. If you leave a review, you send me a screenshot over email, I’ll send you a free book, our free Microdosing book. So leave a review, send me the screenshot, I’ll give you a free Microdosing book as thanks for helping out to spread the word and the message.
0:02:39 PA: Second thing I wanna mention is our forum is up and going. It’s at forum.thethirdwave.co. It’s slow still, it’s growing. I’m recording this in March 2017. It’s growing in popularity. We’re gonna do a big push next month to make sure that it gets some ground and some legs. But I would appreciate if you feel like involving yourself in psychedelic community online. There’s already some threads that are up and going, go over there and check it out. Say hi, introduce yourself, do all that and start getting involved in the community. It would be a pleasure to get to know you. So again, Mike Zappy Zapolin, enjoy the podcast, and please leave a review on iTunes. Thanks, guys.
0:03:23 PA: Hey Zappy, thanks so much for being on the Psychedelia podcast, it’s an honor to have you on here.
0:03:27 Mike Zapolin: Hi, I appreciate you guys evangelizing like you are, so I’m excited to be talking to you. This is, nothing else I’d rather be doing.
0:03:37 PA: That’s phenomenal to hear and it’s great to hear from someone of your stature and of your credentials. Can you tell our audience a little bit about your pre-psychedelic life, and what got you into the psychedelic experience?
0:03:51 MZ: Yeah, sure. I grew up near Boston, a suburb of Boston. And when you grow up in Boston, it’s pretty awesome because you’ve got Cambridge and Harvard Square, and Harvard, and you got all these students, maybe 100,000 plus a year in Boston. So it always stays really young, and really fresh and feels like, when you’re a kid, and you’re young in your early teens, you can go to Harvard Square and hang out with college kids and adults and be under the radar and just nobody really cares they just think you’re a student. So, I think growing up in Boston, in Harvard Square and all that, I got an advanced education in everything that was going on that college students were doing and I got ahead of myself to some degree and seeing different things, including psychedelics and things, but I wasn’t really like a heavy user or anything like that. And I really, in my life, early on, only had a couple of few psychedelic experience, but they’re always really profound to me.
0:04:58 MZ: They felt like the spiritual connection, sort of thing that I was looking for that other people were looking for. When you’re told in life about religion and God, and all these different things. And I had a sense that when I had those psychedelic experiences, that I was tuning into something that was sort of spiritual, felt kind of spiritual, at least. I was probably doing ’em like a kid. Exploratory, have a good time. I wasn’t really trying to have a spiritual experience, but I noticed that there was something spiritual that I had tapped into there. And so, I was going about my life and graduated college. I got lucky, I got to work on Wall Street during late 80s, and I never really loved working on Wall Street, even though I was at a great place and everybody including myself, was making a lot of money. But I wanted to do something entrepreneurial and I saw that infomercials were a new thing that you could just buy programming on TV, make your own show. And that really interested me, and a friend and I started to…
0:06:06 MZ: I left Wall Street and I started to do that and started to do some production around putting companies on TV and buying the airtime and… I was doing that and it was going really well with the infomercials, and I just kept thinking, “Oh, I wish I had a really 24-hour network of my own where I could play this stuff and sell products and things.” And I saw the Internet in the late ’90s, ’97 or something, and I was like, “Wow! That’s like my own 24-hour network. I can just put stuff out and people can buy stuff. This is gonna be incredible.” And so, I basically looked at how to get involved for myself and I realized that the domain names were gonna be a big thing, and I thought, “Wow. Why don’t I develop one of those into something and spend a few years developing like an Internet brand?” And so, I made a list of… I wanted it to be a big enough category, like a categoryname.com that if I worked on it for a few years, it would be worth doing.
0:07:05 MZ: And so I made a list, I called it my Super Bowl list, who advertises at the Super Bowl. It was like beer, cars, computers, insurance, diamonds, credit cards. And the first one on the top of the list was beer, so I was like, “Oh, I wonder who owns beer.com? And I looked it up, it was a young was a young kid. And so, long story short, I bought beer.com from this kid in 1998, and fixed it up into what looked like a beer marketing site, and I put some press out about what I was doing, and I got calls from all the beer companies and I wound up selling it after buying it from this kid for $80,000. A few months later, I sold it to Interbrew who owns Labatt and Rolling Rock and Bass Ale for $7 million.
0:07:49 MZ: So I was like, “Wow! This is a good business. Let’s go.” So I went back to the list. I wound up acquiring diamond.com and creditcards.com eventually, and had a lot of good business experience doing that, and at the same time, I was always looking into ways to raise the consciousness of the business that I was working on, how to maybe eliminate some of the process involved in all these things. And I found that when I kinda tapped into what I’ll call secrets of nature, I could do really well using some of those thoughts about that in business. And so, without getting too off on a tangent, I, about 10 years ago or so, I had done some writing about Jewish mysticism called Kabbalah, and it’s like the secrets of the universe, and I realized that there was a lot of meditation involved in it and that there was even potentially some plant medicine things, herbal things, that were known and energies, ’cause everything was being just described as energies.
0:08:58 MZ: So I thought about my own psychedelic experiences and things that I had and I realized that in one of those experiences, I had really seen everything as energy. Everything as just energy, and I looked at it and I realized in that moment, it was one of the most important moments in my life, where I was looking at it, seeing trillions of atoms spinning in my hand. And then looking at the desk and all these trillions of atoms and I was like, “Wow! I’m made out of the same thing is that. I’m just vibrating at a different frequency.
0:09:31 PA: Yes.
0:09:31 MZ: And I was like, “Oh my God! Everything’s just frequency.” And I was like, “Wow!” And you have a revolution like that, and it’s like it’s going to cause you to see things differently in your everyday life. And so, that took me into… I worked with Deepak Chopra on a project related to Kabbalah and I got to know him 10 years ago or so. And then, back about five years ago, I asked him to be involved with me and some other people in a movie, a documentary, which is called, The Reality of Truth. But it basically is like me and friends trying to go inside of our own minds for answers and healing, and to take some of these psychedelics that we either had done or hadn’t done, and have that direct experience and see if it was something that was spiritual, if it was something that helped us in our life, and if it was something that maybe society could potentially use for some of the larger problems at a macro level.
0:10:37 MZ: And so, Deepak said, “Yeah, I’ll definitely. I’d love to do this with you and chaperone you guys and be like a part of your team. But I’d also wanna make sure that you are having the experience yourself, that you’re taking people on this journey with you.”
0:10:55 PA: And had Deepak, had he previously used psychedelics? Was he?
0:11:02 MZ: Yeah, yep.
0:11:03 PA: Okay.
0:11:03 MZ: So, Deepak is really open; he’s an open book. And he had said that early on that his first experience with spirituality was when he was 17 years old and he took LSD. And that’s from one of the top spiritual teachers, that’s a serious statement to make, that he found something within there that was spirit and he was willing, not only to talk about it, but he understood that there were things like Ayahuasca and Ibogaine and San Pedro or some things that he hadn’t had experiences with, but then he was wide open to as far as, if you’re in the right set and setting with the right people and you’re doing it. Like Deepak says in the movie, if you’re doing it with the right intent, then it can’t go wrong. If your intent is to expand your consciousness, it’s gonna go great.
0:12:00 MZ: And so that was kind of like the guiding principle of the movie was, “Hey, let’s have the right intent. See if we can expand our consciousness.” We did a re-integration with Deepak. And you probably saw in the movie, Michelle Rodriguez, you see her transform through the movie as she has these different experience with the plant medicine. And it’s just really… That’s why I think documentary films are so amazing, is ’cause you can see the transformation, not only on screen with your own eyes, and feel the energy, but we were able to, a year later, get together, two years later, and look at how she had integrated it into her life; high highs and low lows, being a superstar, having friends die, things like everything that happens in life. But for people to see it, what I think we in part accomplished, our goal with the film which was to bring down people’s fear level about doing some of these plants to go inside their own minds for answers.
0:13:05 MZ: And what we were saying was, “Here’s these people that have a lot to lose, and they feel compelled to take the time and go inside their mind. They could be off doing whatever, and running after ego and all that kind of stuff, but they’re taking the time to go inside. And then the fact that they’re willing to share that, I think, hopefully, we accomplish just making it some of these things, whether it’s Ayahuasca or San Pedro or any other thing, psychedelic, that we brought down the threshold of anxiety for people to say, “Ah, you know what? Looks like these guys had a good experience, and they benefited. So maybe there’s something for me in here, and I don’t need to be afraid.” ‘Cause like Aubrey Marcus says in the movie really well, “Everybody’s number one fear is, ‘Oh God, what if I all of a sudden I do it, and then I wanna be a yoga instructor, and I lose the part of myself that I really love?'” And you could see in Michelle and some of these other people that they had had this transformation, but they were still the same person that they were beforehand.
0:14:20 PA: And Aubrey also says in that same part of the show, “Well, even if you do become a yoga teacher, you’ll probably be even happier than you were before.”
0:14:28 MZ: Yeah.
0:14:28 PA: Which I think it speaks to the necessity of acceptance when we sometimes go through these transformative experiences.
0:14:36 MZ: Yeah, no. That’s true. It is great what Aubrey says, ’cause I think it’s… Again, doesn’t happen to everybody, but you wanna know that if your life could be totally transformed, or you may just experience what you love doing in a more conscious way or some new way. So it’s really… Oh, that’s what I love about the cast of The Reality of Truth. It’s like from Deepak to Michelle, to Aubrey, to Peter Coyote, to Ram Dass, all these people. It’s like when you hear them say, “Yes, do this. If you’re doing it with the right intent, it’s worth doing.” And so, that’s the power of those type of people who had… Ram Dass was a doctor. Somebody might be a celebrity. Somebody might be a wealthy businessperson. But at the end of the day, like everybody else, they wanna have a spiritual experience. They wanna feel like they’re living a spiritual existence and that their life is worthwhile.
0:15:42 MZ: And so, that’s why I say, at this point, that’s what people have to really consider. If you live your whole life, and you never go deep inside, whether it’s with plant medicine or some other psychedelic that maybe isn’t a plant, but it’s something like ketamine or MDMA or something like that. And if you’re on a desert island, and you’re gonna spin around like a whirling dervish, maybe you gotta do that. But every way you go inside, that is probably where the answers and the healing’s gotta come from. And if you don’t do that, it’s possible you just completely wasted your life living on the surface level reality that’s not real anyways.
0:16:30 PA: Exactly. And another one that you mentioned in the documentary is transcendental meditation. Can you explain that a little bit? What is transcendental meditation?
0:16:40 MZ: Yeah. So basically, the Maharishi is credited with bringing transcendental meditation to America, and training the Beatles in meditation, and now there’s seven million people doing it. But basically, transcendental meditation is based on the theory that your mind naturally wants to settle down, but you’ve just never been given the technology to understand how to settle your mind down. So what you do is you put your conscious mind on a really simple thing, something really easy, like saying a mantra silently to yourself, repeating a mantra, and you just stay on that task. And invariably, thoughts are gonna come, and when you realize that you’re thinking in transcendental meditation, which naturally, you will. When you realize that you’re thinking, you come back to the mantra and put your conscious mind back on that very simple task. And eventually, your conscious mind’s gonna go, “Okay, I’m on this simple task,” and your larger mind is gonna be able to settle itself down and relax itself into a transcendental state.
0:17:55 MZ: And ultimately, you’re trying to really stay in that transcendental state, where you’re in a realm of consciousness that would be called God consciousness or universal consciousness. And that’s where, when you get down in there, that’s right where people like David Lynch or Jerry Seinfeld or Martin Scorsese, that are all transcendental meditators. It’s understood that that’s where you can pull ideas from and thoughts that are larger than just the surface-level activity. So when you practice it and you do it regularly, not only do you transcend and dip in there, but when you come back into action, part of you is still in that transcended state. So you can make decisions without getting rattled or make the right decisions because you’re partially you’re taking information from a greater source than just what you’re seeing with your eyes or hearing with your ears.
0:18:52 PA: Which sounds a lot like psychedelics as well.
0:18:54 MZ: Exactly.
0:18:56 PA: Those creative breakthroughs that we have when we allow ourselves to go really inwards. Steve Jobs talks about how one of the three most important experiences of his life was doing LSD. You have all these people in Silicon Valley and tech people, I mean yourself, who had these transformative experiences. Now, for you, what did you find to be more effective or interesting, plant medicine or transcendental meditation? Or what were some of the differences or similarities?
0:19:28 MZ: I would say that they’re very, very similar. The benefit of meditation is that you can do it without needing to put any external energy into your energy, you use your own apparatus. But at the same time, we have so much coming at us from society and environmental factors in society and institutions, pounding away, that it’s very difficult to put yourself into that transcendental state sometimes. Some people never even have the tools to get there. And then when you don’t have those tools, or let’s say you’d come back from war and your fight-or-flight reflex is turned on, it’s very hard to say to a person, “Oh okay, just sit down over there, do the mantra, let your mind relax.” And it’s really tough, it’s like, these people need some kind of a catalyst to break them through at least one time and then they have a much bigger target to go after, when they’re meditating. So people who’ve done psychedelics and done them properly, in the right set and setting and had the right experiences to expand their consciousness, when they meditate, they’re able to very quickly see the target and go towards it, kinda go into their psychedelic experience using meditation.
0:20:47 MZ: So it’s an amazing daily practice to have especially anybody who’s doing psychedelic work, I would say the two go kind of hand in hand. But I will say that I did notice and I definitely called out a lot of people who we interviewed about how they get into that transcendental state. It turned out that most, if not all of the main thought leaders and people in positions high up in these different organizations, thought leaders, gurus, all these people, they had had a psychedelic experience. Maybe it was in the 1960s or something like that, but it was part of who they were. And I said to Deepak too and I asked him on camera, I said… And this isn’t in the movie, but I said, “Would you be who you are right now if you hadn’t had that psychedelic experience?” And he was like, “I definitely would not be exactly who I am. It was one of the most profound things that happened to me, it opened up the door for me to be me.” And all that kind of stuff. But you could see that across the board, even the people who say, “Oh, just meditate, just sit down and meditate. You don’t need the psychedelic.”
0:21:58 MZ: It’s like, yeah, if you don’t have any PTSD, and you haven’t been damaged in some way by society or something, sure, maybe you can just sit down and do the mantra and relax and enjoy your meditation, but if that’s not the case, you probably need some kind of a catalyst that’s gonna break you through. And I think that’s the important part about psychedelics why. It’s almost like it should be a right of passage, it’s like, if they can tell you that they can send you off to war to go get killed, they also should have to give you a psychedelic experience so that they can say, “Okay, now you understand you’re not just physical, there’s more going on than you realize”, and it’s really probably society’s duty to give everybody that right of passage in the right set and setting, when they reach a certain age, especially, if on the contrary, they’re gonna be able to require you to go off to war and kill people and be killed or whatever it is.
0:22:57 PA: Yeah, yeah, I totally agree with you. I think that’s something that we’ve talked about on the show before. And this is something that I’ve read from Joseph Campbell or Alan Watts, we don’t really use psychedelics in our Western culture. There’s all these taboos, and stigmas against them, even though they’ve been used for thousands of years, and as initiations to help people really do what you’re saying, get in touch with this higher sense of spirituality, go through this experience so that they understand they’re not just flesh and bone, that there is a spirit to them. And I think, unfortunately, in our culture, we’ve replaced spirit with materialism, and we’re now paying the price of that with ecological crisis and with a bunch of other shit that’s just not good.
0:23:45 MZ: So yeah, I mean, look, I don’t blame anybody for not knowing about these things. The wool’s been pulled over their eyes by society for a long time. And the reason I wrote the letter to President Trump that I published in the New York Times, it wasn’t accusational or anything like that. I was basically just trying to educate, saying, “Hey, there’s this plant Ibogaine, that’s growing out of the ground, that’s been shown to be safe and effective in breaking addiction, and you could use it to heal the opiate epidemic that we’re going through.” And I was basically in the full page, the New York Times, I was urging him to make, the opiate epidemic a first 100 day issue. And basically, like I said, I don’t blame anybody for not knowing about Ibogaine or Ayahuasca, or any of these, Ketamine or any of these things. Because we’re in the educational phase, it’s like Timothy Leary said; If people treated dying in a way that was really, really positive, and they went the hospitals where these beautiful places where people went to die and all their family came and celebrated that they were passing over, people would have a much different feeling and everything with related to death.
0:25:01 MZ: So I think if people have been told, for the last 50 years, “Hey, this stuff’s really good. There’s medicinal value in these plants for disease, for depression, for addiction, they’re very positive. Make sure you take some of this every day, and make sure you microdose some of this.” And we treated it like traditional medicine, we’d be in a much better place, and people would have the right feeling about it. Because I think a lot of the times, people, even marijuana and things like that, people sneak around and hide doing it or their family looks down on it. Where if society had been telling you, “Hey, you know what, a lot of people are supposed to have cannabinoids and you’re supposed to have some of this THC and it’s really good for you”, like fluoride in the water, people would be getting even a lot more benefit from these things because they wouldn’t have to do them with the thought in their mind that maybe somehow this isn’t good for them, isn’t super positive, like it could be.
0:26:01 PA: Right, that kinda taboo or… I mean I even had that. Similar to you, I had these really amazing experiences when I was 19 and 20, with LSD and mushrooms and I was really, I felt guilty about them for a long time. There’s a lot of stigma that’s kinda like we’re indoctrinated with and what you’re talking about in terms of people feel like they can’t talk about these things. People feel like if they talk about them, they’re gonna be shunned and they’re gonna be kind of put to the side, and that’s really sad, I think.
0:26:30 MZ: Yeah. Well, I think we’re in a golden moment where, back when in the ’60s, let’s say when Timothy Leary and people were trying to bring out the value of these things, it was tough because you only had a few television networks, ABC, NBC, CBS, you had only a couple major newspapers in the country. And now, you got the internet, which is dis-intermediating information so that people are getting this type of information that they need on things, and that’s happening at the same time. And then on top of that, you’ve got a situation where nature itself is bringing these things out. This is like the grand plan of nature. And a lot of times the transcendental meditators, Maharishi always talked about, going with nature. Go with nature. Don’t fight it, just go with it and then you can be in support of nature and you’ll have a really easy time, and you’ll accomplish all your future dreams and all that. And I thought of how it’s bringing out these plants, it knows that people are depressed and have issues like that, and that there are diseases that need cures.
0:27:40 MZ: So it’s bringing out these medicines, and you can see marijuana is coming out first and it’s coming out across the world, and nature’s doing that, and basically opening people up to, “Hey, you know what, I tried this marijuana, I tried this herb, this plant. It wasn’t as bad as they said it was, and I actually feel better and it helped my kid or my mom.” or whatever it was. “And so, maybe I don’t have to distrust these things, maybe there’s some other things I can look for in nature, maybe I need to go deeper now.” And so, I think it’s… I’m just trying, like you are, to report what nature is already bringing out and when you’re on that path, it’s a really easy path. Just flow with it. It’s like you’re going with the winning team and you’re just sliding along with it going, “Wow, this is going really well.” You’re in support in nature. So, I think nature is smart enough to bring cannabis out and it knows that between Ibogaine and ayahuasca, these things that could boost your immune system, cure major diseases, major mental health issues, that it’s coming and that’s the plan.
0:28:54 MZ: You and I were talking before about why we’re doing what we’re doing and why we’re passionate about it. And I just think it would be really easy to kick back and go, “I don’t care. Wait 10-20 years. Nature’s got its plan. It’ll bring out the cannabis and bring out the ayahuasca and ibogaine and everything will be great.” But I don’t think we have the time to wait right now. I think we’re in a critical situation where between even horrifying thoughts like biological weapons and nuclear weapons and destructing the planet. These things, they’re happening so fast and can happen in an instant that how do we change what’s going on? How is that even possible? ‘Cause everybody has their preconceived notions and prejudices and things like that. And the only way that I’ve ever seen where people instantly change their perspective and gain dramatically more empathy is when they do psychedelics. So I started this, I’ll call it a movement, and it’s called, “Your Mind has Rights” and it’s basically demanding the right for people to go inside their own minds for answers and healing, using any means necessary that seems to be safe, that seems to be not affecting other people. And that if they have addiction or depression, nobody should be keeping them from these plants that are growing out of the ground that have been shown to be safe and effective.
0:30:24 MZ: So bottom line is, we really need a critical mass of people going inside their own minds for answers and healing. And then when they have the shift and they have more empathy, now we can talk about politics, and race and terror and the environment, and we can have a multi-100-year perspective, and think about people and have empathy for people in the future, people on the other side of the world. And so I sound like a broken record these days ’cause every time somebody goes, “Oh my God. What are we gonna do about the food crisis? What are we gonna do about the environment? What are we gonna do about overcrowding? What are we… ” It’s like same answer. It’s like, “We need a critical mass of people to go inside their own minds and change their perspective and their level of empathy. It’s totally simple, and nature is providing these energies that are coming out of the ground. They’re just frequencies and then you put them into your frequency, and then you metabolize those or you synthesize those with your frequency and that changes your frequency.” And so it’s really, really simple. That’s the good news, is we’re on the precipice of people realizing that these are safe and effective, they have spiritual components to them, you don’t lose who you are. You gain, and that if you do it in the right set and setting, it’s gonna be a positive thing in your life, and then you can be part of that critical mass of people.
0:31:53 MZ: Like Maharishi again, back to transcendental meditation, he always said, if a critical mass of people were doing transcendental meditation, they were transcending and they were on a plane of consciousness together, that his number was the square root of 1% of a population. So if the square root 1% of a population is resonating at a certain frequency, that it will affect the other people around them and it will grow exponentially. So basically, we just need a critical mass of people using psychedelics, and changing their perspective and increasing their empathy, and we could literally solve every single thing that we call a problem. It’s very solvable as long as people are… Like Einstein said, “You can’t solve a problem with the same consciousness or thinking that got you into the problem.” It’s like we’ve got to change our consciousness to solve these things. And the easiest, quickest, immediate way is psychedelics, period.
0:32:52 PA: Absolutely. So from your perspective, from the work that you’ve done, with the documentary that you shot, with work that you’ve done with the Ketamine Clinic, which I wanna get into in a little bit after we kind of keep going. What do you think is the best way for people who are sitting at home to get involved and to get other people involved, what’s a good way to do that?
0:33:13 MZ: The best thing to do is to do what feels comfortable for you, whatever is the path of least resistance. So you’ve made up your mind that, “Hey, you know what, I’d like to go into my mind, I’m checking out this meditation but it doesn’t seem like it resonates with me completely or I don’t think I can do it completely. And that maybe I need some other catalyst.” And you look into these different catalysts using the internet, using people around you, and you find what resonates with you and what you feel most comfortable with. So [unintelligible] being like your destiny. It’s like people that are coming there to get esketamine infusion treatment for depression, anxiety, PTSD, suicidal ideation, addiction, all of these major, major things that most of them are treatment-resistant too. They come to the Ketamine Clinic ’cause ketamine is a very safe but very powerful psychedelic that is what you would call basically what it’s doing is it’s causing your brain to disassociate. So it’s basically letting your brain communicate in a way without your ego and your consciousness getting in the way.
0:34:32 MZ: And what happens is, it builds neuropathways in the brain, it’s FDA approved, they use it on children as an anesthetic because it’s so safe, but they realized, Yale University did a really large study, and they realized that in a low dose infusion, ketamine breaks depression and anxiety and these things within hours, instead of months and years and never. So the amazing thing about this is that the transformation that people get. And the segue that I was making is; for some people if I tell them, “Hey, you know what, no problem, you feel like you wanna have a breakthrough, go down to Peru sit with a Shaman, get in the right set and setting.” And they’re like, “Whoa, if I tell my family I’m gonna go do that they’re gonna lock me in a mental institution or they’re gonna try to stop me. It’s just not gonna happen.” Number one. Number two, Some of the people are like, “Well, what if I don’t get the right Peru or what if I don’t get the right Shaman, how do I have more certainty?”
0:35:35 MZ: And so as I was working on trying to figure that out in my own life and for friends and people like that, I realized that, “Hey, you know what, there’s this way that people can go to a western medical doctor that they and their family are comfortable with, and they can be seen by a doctor, they can be in their own neighborhood, but they can have a disassociated experience using ketamine.” And that experience is probably gonna not only change their life but it’s also going to open them up to a new way of living and being and so forth. So if you’re in a western society, maybe ketamine is the first step, if you’re living in a Latin country where it’s part of some of your culture, maybe you go towards that. If you’re near or associated with somebody Native American, and that you could access and feel comfortable doing something with peyote in Native Americans. It’s like whatever is most comfortable for you is how I think you should start, ’cause then if you go in with the intent of having a good experience and then you’re in a good set and setting for you, you’re gonna have a great experience, it’s gonna change your life. And you’re gonna be part of that critical mass that’s changing society’s consciousness.
0:36:54 PA: Yes. And I think that’s a good point. Now I wanted to ask you, have you done ketamine before? Have you tried it before?
0:37:00 MZ: Yeah. So I have gone through the treatments and it’s a very powerful experience, and it’s not like anything people have done before if they haven’t had the experience, meaning people come in and a lot of people they’ve never done any psychedelics at all. They’re just treatment resistant, they’re depressed, they’re suicidal, they’re just really miserable and they don’t wanna feel that way, and so they’re willing to do anything and they know that this is… Cleveland Clinic just called ketamine a top 10 medical breakthrough, and it was the only mental health thing on the list. So that makes it the number one mental health breakthrough, and I would say it’s probably gonna wind up years from now being credited as the biggest breakthrough in mental health that’s ever happened for humans. Because what happens is, when you get the infusion low-dose which is different than people are doing it recreationally where they’re snorting higher doses and not really knowing that areas of your brain can work and communicate on their own without your ego, your consciousness being in there, you can live 1,000 lifetimes in 45 minutes, it’s what happens.
0:38:14 MZ: And I describe it as, people always say, “Well, is it like LSD?” And I’m like, “No, no.” “Well, is it like anesthetic when you go to the dentist?” And I’m like, “No, it’s nothing like that.” what it is that’s so profound about it, it’s basically like Ram Dass says in his book Be Here Now. You wanna be in the now, you don’t wanna be in the future worried about it, you don’t wanna be in the past with regrets, you wanna try to put yourself in the now that’s the moment that he’s telling you to set yourself in. Eckhart Tolle, Power of Now. So all of these masters are saying being in the now is what you need to do in order to resonate in a peaceable way, in a way that is gonna be fulfilling.
0:39:01 MZ: And the ketamine remarkably puts you in the now. So for 30 minutes of your 45-minute infusion, when you’re in that disassociative state, you’re in the now, there is no past, and there is no future. And like Timothy Leary famously said about when they asked him what he thought about dying, Timothy Leary said, “I can’t wait. I think it’s gonna be the most amazing time of my life, because in the two minutes to 15 minutes when your heart stops but your brain’s still going and you got billions of neurons whirring, and you could live a 1000 life times in that two to 15 minutes.” And that was what he was talking about, is this being in that now, being in that state. And so the fact that ketamine can safely put you in that state, and you have this experience of being able to look at your life, being able to evaluate what’s important, what’s real, and have a spiritual experience, most of these people are having this spiritual experience for the first time in their lives. When that happens and they come out, there’s no way they could be depressed like they are, or having the same level of anxiety.
0:40:19 MZ: And so, the idea with the ketamine and the protocol that they’ve come up with is that you do a series of six treatments and you build those neural pathways in your brain. Because the science is that when the ketamine metabolizes after your treatment, in the hours after, it metabolizes into hydroxynorketamine, which is what’s building those neural pathways around trauma, depression. And it’s kind of the science, but it’s also the miracle of that experience, that instead of most antidepressants and things that are trying to block things or mute out the symptoms, the ketamine is actually building these neural pathways, and it’s in a building state.
0:41:05 MZ: So, super powerful. I think the yin and yang of the ketamine is that people who do that probably should do some plant medicine, is the ying yang of that. Where in plant medicine, a lot of times there’s that re-connection to nature, it brings you right back to nature, which people have lost. And so, the ketamine, being this galactic experience and an entire universe, when you yang that with the plant medicine and tying you back to nature, it’s like you really probably at that point have some, like Maharishi said, some kind of invincible quality to you, because you have gone through the door and you’re carrying forward what you brought through the door, and your energy has an invincibility to it.
0:41:58 PA: So is this ketamine… Who is it available for? Could I just go to a ketamine clinic and get an infusion? Or do you need to have a doctor’s recommendation, having been depressed, or having PTSD, something like that?
0:42:11 MZ: So, a doctor needs to make the call. My partner in the Ketamine Kesmit Clinic is a medical doctor, and so he’s the one who makes the call as far as that somebody has PTSD, or depression, or anxiety, or something like that. But the thing about it is, in our society right now, pretty much everybody has some level of PTSD. If you’re living in this world right now, there’s some scary stuff going on, people have been traumatized in different situations. So it’s not that you have to come with a list of all the medications you’ve tried and they haven’t worked. Even though a lot of the people that are coming, at least initially now, they’ve tried all the medications, they’ve gone up in doses, and they tried the electro-convulsive therapy on the brain and all that stuff, and none of it’s worked. And they’re really scared, ’cause they’re like, “Wow, if this ketamine doesn’t work, I’m pretty much out of options, and I’m really nervous.” And then they get the ketamine infusion, and boom, they’re like, “Wow, that’s the first thing that ever took me in a different direction. I feel how it positively took me in a healing direction.”
0:43:23 MZ: And so, I had Michael Lohan, who is Lindsey Lohan’s dad, and I have had come to the clinic and I’ve had Family members, and myself, and so forth, and all of them, when I asked them about… Like Michael Lohan has got a testimony on the Kismet Clinic site, and he mentions the word spiritual experience as part of what happened to him during it. And another testimony from a family member talking about addiction, and said it was the spiritual aspect of it that was the switch being flipped. And of course, you know the science is, again, that the ketamine in the hours after is building these new neural pathways and things. But it’s amazing because, like the Cleveland Clinic is saying, this ketamine for depression is a medical breakthrough. And how it works, scientifically, you can point your finger to the metabolization and these things, but there’s two parts to it. As you know yourself, there’s that experience of being in the now, that God conscious experience, that when you have that you can’t put that back in the hat, it’s out. It’s out of the genie bottle. And so it’s gonna be a big part of society in the future. It’s a real breakthrough.
0:44:40 MZ: And like I say, people even during the making of the reality of truth and different things, and when I have talks with people, they always say, “Well, it’s all about the plants. We’re plant people.” And I’m like, “No, you know what? I’m not a plant person. I’m advocating people going inside their own minds for answers and healing, and whether they do that with a plant, or they do it with some synthetic element like ketamine, or they do it through meditation, I don’t really care how they get there, as long as they get there.” And I’m acknowledging that we’re so conditioned by society and all these outside forces that they probably need one of these major catalysts to break them through and change their perspective immediately and bring them some more empathy. And once they do that, they’re part of the solution right there.
0:45:31 PA: Part of the critical mass, right? Part of the critical mass that we need. And I think that’s a really good way of putting it. Daniel Pinchback, who is a psychedelic author, he just published a book called “How Soon is Now”, which is about how the ecological crisis is going to really act as an initiation for global consciousness. And I think as part of that, the psychedelic experience is gonna get people thinking about these things. And obviously whether that’s through plant medicines or whether that’s through synthetics like LSD or ketamine or MDMA, I think I wanna re-emphasize what you said, the important part is having the experience, exploring your own consciousness, and coming out better as a result of it.
0:46:16 MZ: Yeah, that’s it. That’s it. That’s awesome. Yeah, and we’re living in this really golden moment right now where, to Daniel’s point, How soon is now? I’d say now is right now because you can get into the now in a second, we just have to educate people about the opportunities. And one of the… Just I want to talk for a minute about my own Ibogaine experience, because that was one of these things where I always kept telling myself… I was of course intrigued about Ibogaine being the most powerful psychedelic known to man, this African root that can break addiction in eight hours, and can transform you. I was always wowed by what it sounded like, but I was always, of course, a bit apprehensive about what that meant to do it. And I kept on thinking, “Well, I don’t have an addiction to heroin or something like that, where I need to do it. It’s just I feel like maybe I need to have the experience at some point.” And I had that in my consciousness, and I got the opportunity to go and do some Ibogaine in the right set and setting with a master guide and shaman. And that was, again, one of the most profound experiences of my life, along with my Ayahuasca experience in the jungle in Peru, where I already knew that…
0:47:41 MZ: Like say the big picture was that we were all frequency and stuff, but sometimes when you see it and it’s shown to you in these different ways, you get that, “Oh, you know what? Not only do I get this, but when I come back out of this I gotta live every single day with this knowledge on the forefront, and I gotta just live every day to its fullest with this understanding.” And it’s like a re-affirmation of how to live your every day. And so for people having done Ibogaine, it’s definitely a right of passage, because it’s so visual. It’s different than the Ayahuasca and the mushrooms and the Ketamine and all these different things, because, to a person that’s done Ibogaine, the experiences are so visually real. They’re visually, like you’re watching a movie of your life or there’s a computer searching what you’re looking for and then coming up and showing you the search results and showing you the movie of what you’re thinking about or asking about or trying to understand.
0:48:53 MZ: And so, it’s so visual that it’s incredible, number one. And then number two, I had an experience where the shaman, said, “Come up with two or three people. Put your intent on two or three people that you wanna meet during your Ibogaine experience that you’re gonna meet at the soul level. So they could be alive or they could be dead, but you’re gonna have a meeting with them at the soul level. That’s gonna happen.” And I was like… I kinda was like, “Eh, I hope. But whatever.” And the one that I really focused my intent on for whatever reason was the late comedian Chris Farley. And I just kept thinking like, “Oh man, wow what a guy. I’d love to hang out with him and just have a crazy time and just… I wonder… ” And boom, middle of my Ibogaine experience, there I am standing next to him like it’s a regular day and I’m with Chris Farley and we’re at this party, and it’s going on and we’re laughing and everything’s going. And in that experience, it kinda went dark at a certain point in that experience, where we were hanging out and then all the people, maybe 100 people that were at this party, they started to tell jokes that were mean or not cool and just not even funny kinda thing.
0:50:24 MZ: And they’re laughing, like hysterical. And Farley and I were looking at each other like, “What the hell is going on here?” And it got really dark and stuff. And Farley basically just looked at me and he was like, “You know what?” He was like, “See, that’s why you can’t try to make everybody laugh.” He’s like, “Because if they’re laughing at this, how are you gonna beat yourself up that you’re trying to get them to laugh? What a lesson.” And I was like, “Holy shit.” And boom, I moved on to my next experience. But I was like, “Wow. The fact that I hung out with Chris Farley and on that level, and it was so real.”
0:51:02 MZ: And I’ve heard you Daniel Pinchback tell the story about his Ibogaine experience, how it helped him to quit drinking, and what that experience itself was like, and you can see that the Ibogaine, not only does it physically detox all of the opiates and tobacco and alcohol and everything out of your system, even if you shot heroin the night before, it’ll detox it right out of your body and you’ll be clean and sober. But these experiences of looking at your life, being able to look with that clarity, you can’t really do that any other way. I don’t even see how that’s possible. So we need a critical mass of people either using these master plants, using Ayahuasca, Ibogaine, San Pedro, Ketamine, LSD, on and on.
0:51:52 MZ: And I think, ultimately, micro-dosing, like we were talking about. Micro-dosing LSD, like Timothy Leary said, that would have been what Ritalin became if it hadn’t been vilified. Everybody would be just micro-dosing LSD for ADHD and everything, and everybody would be doing well. But instead they vilified LSD and made it into something it’s not, and so it was illegal, and then they had to come up with stuff like Ritalin and things that are not as natural. ‘Cause a lot of people think, “Oh, LSD, that’s all chemicals. I’d never do that.” And you’re like, “Well, you probably know then that LSD it’s basically bacteria growing on a rye seed that creates that acid and we’re just synthesizing and making the same thing as what grows naturally on a rye seed. So if you wanna do some LSD from a rye seed, no problem, we’ll get you some natural LSD.”
0:52:49 PA: Exactly.
0:52:51 MZ: Don’t try to claim its chemicals.
0:52:53 PA: Right. On that same point, I was talking with someone for a podcast a couple of weeks ago, and he’s like the… And you had talked about this as well. Manna in the Bible, and mentioning it and talking about it as being a mushroom. He had a really interesting perspective as well in terms of it could have been like an ergot fungus, and that they synthesized some type of LSD like molecule or compound from it as well, so it’s like…
0:53:18 MZ: I wouldn’t doubt it, I really wouldn’t. Our point in the reality and truth of talk about Manna in the Bible maybe being mushrooms or, like you’re saying, some kind of an ergot, some spore, every single religion has meditation at some point in it, and it also has herbal and plant medicine in it for transcending and having a God-conscious experience. We’ve just taken that out of the religion in our modern society. Deepak said, when we were talking about the Manna too. There’s a plant called Soma, S-O-M-A, that’s mentioned in his Vedic tradition, Soma’s mentioned in the Rigveda, the book, Greek book, the Rigveda, it’s mentioned over 100 times in the Rigveda, the Soma. And if you read the description of the Soma in the Rigveda using modern science, where it says things like; It’s a plant that doesn’t come from a seed, which obviously mushrooms are the only plant that doesn’t come from a seed, they’re spores. And so Deepak said, “So obviously, it’s mushrooms.” He said, “They just don’t call it mushrooms, they don’t identify it in that way because they’re veiling it.” Maybe some people need to come to it. Maybe they couldn’t handle it in that context, so they veiled it a little bit.
0:54:39 MZ: But when you look at it and you read that description, and then you read in the Rigveda how the Shaman talked about using the Soma and drinking from the urine of the stags of the reindeer, that’s a very basic shamanic practice with reindeer and mushrooms. And so, even in the Vedic tradition, even in our Bible and things, there’s very clear reference to psychedelic plants putting people in that transcendental state, but they don’t call it necessarily by the name because either it’s been changed for all kinds of reasons, or like Deepak said, maybe some people need to come to it. It was better that they kinda called it Soma, this mystery plant, and then all the… Some people came to it in the right way at the right time.
0:55:31 PA: Well, yeah, there’s like a sense of mystery that surrounds it, right? This is true too, of what they used to do in ancient Greece, when they had these mystery, the Ellucian mysteries, where they would go out into the woods and drink Kykeon which was a beverage that was made of ergot. It was supposed to be secret. It was supposed to be, because that in itself was like an initiation, and that in itself… Again, this sense of mystery lent itself to mysticism and lent itself to going beyond flesh and body and this current reality. So I feel like it feeds in nice to that.
0:56:08 MZ: Yeah. True, true. And then you think about the fact that back then people were very in touch with nature and they were living in nature. But now, we’re so disconnected from nature, some of the people that are having depression and addiction, part of their underlying issue is that they’re disconnected from nature. So here are these plants that are available to us. And I even said it to the religious people. I talked to Joel Osteen on the reality of truth, and Marcus and Joni Lamb from Daystar, and Ravi Zacharias, the preacher, and some rabbis, and just all these people. And when I’d talk to them about religion, and then I’d start talking to them about plant medicine and things like that, and whatever resistance I would get I would say to them, I would try to use their terms, and I would say, “Okay, well, you believe strongly in God, right?” And they’re like, “Absolutely!” I would say, “Okay. And you believe God has infinite wisdom, correct?” And they go, “Yes.” I go, “Okay. Well, doesn’t it make sense that God having infinite wisdom of everything would have put some natural things here on earth to help us to tap into spirituality and healing? Like wouldn’t that just makes sense that some plants would grow that are here to help us tap into that?”
0:57:27 MZ: And they would kinda go silent, like, “Yeah. Huh. Yeah, that… Yeah, I guess that makes sense.” But it was so shocking that, again, I don’t hold it against them. This is what everybody’s been taught and this is what society’s… It’s been mysterious for a long time. But I think nature knows that we’re in a crisis situation, people need healing right now, major diseases, depression, stress, and it’s bringing out these plants, and quite frankly, who knows, maybe it even brought the internet out to help bring out the plants, but…
0:58:03 PA: Global consciousness. I’ve heard that as well, and I think that’s definitely… It makes sense. There are aspects of it that make sense.
0:58:09 MZ: Yeah. And you know, like the Shaman says, as humans, we’re having this human experience and we think, “Oh, we’re the highest level of consciousness, and we think and all this, and we control the animals and the plants and all that.” Meanwhile, here we are, actually working for the plants, for that matter. They’re rooted in the ground, they can’t move around, so they have humans moving around, and animals moving around, and watering them, and feeding them, and tending to them. We’re the ones that are doing a lot of the work for the plants, like they need us to do, or they need nature to do as opposed to… I think the big mistake when we look back at what the damage was that was caused by this misinformation, this bad information about plants and going inside your mind and how you get to a spiritual place. All that bad information when it’s looked at years and years later, people are gonna say, “You know, there was this opportunity and what really set us back was that misinformation.” Because we have these even naturally occurring things that are here that we can be tapping into, we just have to use them in the right way.
0:59:28 MZ: So I think when when history looks back, this is a really key moment, where people are accessing the information, taking care of their own health. They know we’re in this crisis moment, and they’re at the precipice. And these plant medicines that have been around for millions of years, been used by societies since the beginning of humanism, we’re gonna break through that. And then the idea is gonna be that we realize that our mistake was we’re having this human experience where we think humans are at the top and that everything’s here for us, and not realizing that that’s what’s limiting us. And that if we can transcend beyond our human experience and have more empathy and have a different perspective, that we might realize that we’re not the highest conscious thing going on, and maybe we’re actually disrupting it right now. But we have the ability to instantly tap into that universal consciousness, God consciousness, and they’re growing out of the ground, all over the place right here for us.
1:00:34 PA: Well, let’s wrap up this conversation just by, What are your next plans? I know before we started recording, you mentioned you’re working on a new documentary. Do you have any other big things that are going on for you and psychedelics?
1:00:47 MZ: My mission is just to advocate as much as I can in whatever way I can to get to the critical mass. And so I’m looking for opportunities that occur, like everybody focus… The New York Times was, for me, one of these critical mass places that people are looking at under a microscope at different points, where a concentrated amount of consciousness is focused. And if you can affect that consciousness, then you can do a lot more than you could do through traditional means. And so I’m constantly looking for those. And I just wanna give you one wrap-up example of what I mean. There’s an effect that I call The Dave Matthews Effect.
1:01:32 MZ: And that is that Dave Matthews, the artist, the musician, instead of doing what everybody else does, go around and… When you wanna get big in music and famous, you go around the country, you tour around, you play every college town and all these little towns, and you try to develop a following. And it takes a lot of time, and a lot of energy, and so forth, and a lot of luck. And what Dave Matthews did instead was, he went to Nantucket, which is an island off of Massachusetts, a very wealthy place in the world. He went to Nantucket for the summer, and he just played basically all summer in Nantucket, and people heard him. And then all of these wealthy kids who were in Nantucket for the summer, they went back to their school in Boulder, Vermont, or wherever, California, who knows. But these were cultural creatives, these were the influencers. And they went back to their school after being in Nantucket for the summer, and they were like, “Oh my God, you gotta hear Dave Matthews. Here’s his stuff. You gotta get some of his music and go see his show.” And boom, Dave Matthews tipped himself in one summer in Nantucket, bigger than he ever could’ve if he just toured around for years and years and years and years, because he was affecting a certain consciousness that was concentrated.
1:02:53 MZ: So I saw a month ago or something like that, that everybody after the election was micro-focused on what was happening and the news that was coming out. And I thought, The New York Times, the opportunity to put a message in there, not that’s educational, not just to the president, but to all of the executives that read it, all the advertising people, all the medical people, all the students, all the United Nations type people, everything going on in New York and society, and all these influencers, it was like a Dave Matthews moment. And so, I had to take that opportunity to educate about Ibogaine and other psychedelics. And so that’s what I’m looking for, whether it’s in a TV format, a documentary follow-up that I’m working on actively to really bring out where we are today, to attending the Psychedelic Science 2017 coming up in a couple of months, or in a month and a half. I’m gonna do a Q&A, they’re gonna screen the movie, The Reality of Truth, and I’m going to do the Q&A with Aubrey Marcus. And so, those moments where you have a critical mass of people that you can affect about psychedelics, as an advocate, I think you need to take advantage of those moments and that’s where you’re gonna find me. Wherever those things are, that’s where I’m gonna be.
1:04:24 PA: Good. And I think that’s a great way to end our conversation. It was a pleasure and an honor to have you on here and share the wisdom that you’ve gathered from both your professional and business life, but also obviously from your experiences with plants and Ketamine and some others. So again, Zappy, thanks. Thanks so much for spending your time with us. And where can people find you, where is a good way to find your documentary or these other resources that you have?
1:04:54 MZ: Yeah. So one of the best place to go is zappy.com, Z-A-P-P-Y.com, and there’s some links there. Therealityoftruth.com, there’s access to the movie and so forth. And then yourmindhasrights.org is a site dedicated to trying to get to the critical mass we’re talking about, to demand the right, to get enough people just demanding the right to go inside their own minds. So those are the best ways. And the pleasure is mine, because what you’re doing, and just getting this information out, it’s really… It’s about building that critical mass. So this show, the next guest you have on, somebody that is on, six months from now, they could be the person that tips that critical mass. So it’s like we’re all playing our roles, so I totally appreciate you doing this show, and the people that are listening that are doing their part and passing it along. It’s like that’s all, we’re just going in support of nature.
1:05:55 PA: Absolutely, that’s a great way to wrap up. Thanks again, Zappy.
1:05:58 MZ: Alright, you too. Have a great night.