Descending the Mountain

We are taken on a journey of mystical revelations in ‘Descending the Mountain’ – a fascinating, artistically crafted documentary film following Psychiatrist Franz and zen monk Vanja through a ground-breaking scientific experiment located on the majestic and magnetic Mt. Rigi of Switzerland to understand if and how, when united, psilocybin and meditation might expand our understanding of the nature of consciousness.

Leaving the iconic visuals of the 60’s behind, Nevejan allows animation, sound, and A.I. visual art to create a contemporary rendering of the transcendent experience of oneness with nature.

. . .
Patricia Pisters
Prof Media and film studies University Amsterdam

. . .
Descending the Mountain is exemplary for the current psychedelic renaissance. In the hallucinating setting of the Swiss mountains and the serenity of a monastery surrounded by nature, Maartje Nevejan takes us on an audio-visual journey through expanded consciousness. As in her previous work Are You There? she uses various subtle techniques to document the enhanced reality of inner experiences. Visually surprising and with a mesmerizing sound track this film literally opens doors of perception akin to the effects of psychedelics.”
. . .

Feature Documentary Film, 78 minutes
Subtitels: English, French, Spanish, Dutch and German
Location: Switzerland
Production: Switzerland/the Netherlands
World premiere: Fall 2021

Synopsis & trailer

What happens when you administer psilocybin to experienced zen meditators? A neuroscientist and a zen master carry out a double-blind experiment on a sphinxlike mountain in Switzerland. Their goal: to examine the nature of consciousness. 

On the last day of a 5-day retreat, a group of zen meditators – who have never used any psychedelic substances before  –  are given psilocybin, half the group receives a placebo. Mystical experiences are induced through a combination of deep meditation and psilocybin, a psychoactive compound found in magic mushrooms. 

This scientific experiment, which was published in Nature magazine in 2020, may lift the controversy that has clouded the realm of psychedelics for far too long. 

Continue reading “Synopsis & trailer”

Where to see

As soon as we have details about the first screening of this movie, you will find on this page info about Date & time and location.

You also can follow us on Facebook or Instagram to be updated.

We are looking forward to welcoming you!

The making of

Behind the scenes of Descending the Mountain

“If approached respectfully and under good conditions, these substances have the power to facilitate the real deep spiritual mystical experience”

– ‘Descending the Mountain’

This video shows the making of the wonderfull animations (by Douwe Dijkstra), used in the movie.

Enjoy lots of ‘behind the scenes’ photos….

Continue reading “The making of”

The Team

Team photo, from left to right:

Fokke van Saane – Sound
Jean Counet – Camera
Vanja Palmers – Zen master
Franz Vollenweider – Psychiatrist and Neuroscientist
Maartje Nevejan – director movie
Annette Badenhorst – co producer and production Switzerland

DESCENDING THE MOUNTAIN CAST

Vanja Palmers
Franz Vollenweider
Sister Theresia Raberger
Dr. Peter Gasser
Auréle Masson Gianoli – little Franz
Magnus Huser – little Vanja

Continue reading “The Team”