Podcast 337 – “The World Could Be Anything”

Guest speaker: Terence McKenna


[NOTE: All quotations are by Terence McKenna.]

“And yet my, not only my faith, but my experience has led me to believe that the world is not a construction of space and time and matter and energy. That that mapping is insufficient. That the world is instead some kind of a linguistic construct. It is more in the nature of a sentence, or a novel, or a work of art than it is in the nature of these machine models of interlocking law that we inherit out of a thousand years of rational reductionism.”

“It seems to me that information is the thing which uses matter, uses light, uses spirit, uses whatever it can put its hands on to organize itself into higher and higher levels of self-reflection.”

“It’s meanings that we need to coax into our lives.”

“And the whole schtick of the psychedelic experience, I think, is reclaim immediate experience, realize that you out vote all parliaments, police forces, and major newspapers on the planet because, who knows, they may be illusions.”

“The world could be anything, you know, It could be a solid state matrix of some sort. It could be an illusion. It could be a dream. I mean it really could be a dream.”

“In cyberspace things are built out of light.”

“Apparently, in the Avesta classical period [early Iron Age and before] no one would have dreamed of having a spiritual experience without resort to drugs.”

“To carry language from two dimensions into three is the task of the poets, and the rebels in the 20th Century.”


PCs – Right click, select option
Macs – Ctrl-Click, select option



The Phenomenon of Man

Childhood’s End

The City and the Stars

The Brotherhood of the Screaming Abyss


  1. fun-da-mental tv Said,

    December 30, 2012 @ 3:06 am

    Wow, what a end of 2012 – Terence at its best!

    Lorenzo, keep up your excellent work and bring even more of the bard’s good tales.

    Aloha forever!

  2. terpenoid Said,

    December 31, 2012 @ 7:32 pm

    Yep, this is a fabulous example of Terence in top form…

    Many many thanks, & yes please more !

  3. Tommy S Said,

    January 2, 2013 @ 5:38 am

    Hey Lorenzo and all others!

    I just listened to this episode and i really enjoyed it as usual 🙂

    As a comment to the written word being the same as the visible language, i would not agree.

    To me the difference is that the written word still has to be interpreted through your individual understanding, the meaning you perceive in a text is not necessarily what the writer intended unless both minds are completly in tune on all ideas, concepts and values et cetera.

    The visible language The Bard talks about conveys the intended understanding from the person transmitting it to the person recieving it without fail.

    At least that is the meaning i have perceived from the talks ive listened to 😉

    Im feeling very positive surviving the “the end” and going forward into something new, intellectually i was expecting something like when we passed into the 2000nds, ie not much but emotionally i couldnd shake the dread of something big happening, the conflict between my mind and heart have at times during the past year been hard to handle as i felt like i might go funny(ier? 😛 ) in the head.

    I have been sort of expecting a large, cataclysmic event to put us in a reality like in Mad Max or TheTerminator since i was maybe eight or ten, years before i had heard the 2012 meme, almost wanting it to come so that the release from the waiting would come and people with real skills that matter for our survival would be valued instead of all the bull the mainstream masses want.

    I hope i can let that feeling of waiting go for good now.

    Happy new year, love and light to everyone 🙂

    [COMMENT by Lorenzo: Thanks for the comment . . . and I agree with your comment about visible language . . . just thought that I’d try to stir things up a bit :-). ]

  4. Leon G Said,

    January 2, 2013 @ 11:51 am

    Thanks for another stellar year of podcasts, Lorenzo.
    May 2013 be overflowing with love and joy and good health.
    Safe travels.

  5. little b Said,

    January 4, 2013 @ 9:32 am

    OH MY! This is so incredible! I loved hearing Terence talk about theology and also the “epoxy of syntax” Cant thank you enough Lorenzo!

  6. Name (required Said,

    January 7, 2013 @ 10:20 am

    VERY intriqued by T’s interp that Marshall McCluhan equated the basic existence of electrical energy… and man’s technical vectoring… of same as a manifestation of the Holy Ghost. Startling. Inspirational. Will pursue.

    This is exactly why I keep coming here.

    Lately T’s verbal stylings (to me) circle back to his Catholic roots… in a high/tight/polished/outrageous/ minimalist fashion…but still.

    I didn’t catch WHERE this talk took place. Seems T’s terminology in this one was far more religious than usual.

    Do you know the venue/ audience for this one Lorenzo?

    FANTASTIC content on which to end 2012. Happy Baktun Lorenzo. You are a very big deal IMO. I sense material is getting harder to find. Please keep ’em coming. It matters.

  7. Benno Said,

    January 7, 2013 @ 12:15 pm

    Terence in fine form.
    Can you tell me what the intro/outro music is for the salon podcast? Would love to get a copy of the song and other beats that samples Terence’s talks.
    Thanks Lorenzo 🙂

    [COMMENT by Lorenzo: That music is from my friend Jacque Oliver and a group he had many years ago that was called Catal Huyuk. I believe the CD is titled “Nature Loves Courage”. Unfortunately, they only did a small print for friends, and it’s not available anymore. . . . You can find a few of their other tunes on MySpace at http://www.myspace.com/catalhuyuk where you’ll find a trance mix of that song :-)]. . . . And thanks for asking, I’m sure that Jacques will be pleased.]

  8. Mr Dudley B Said,

    January 8, 2013 @ 5:08 pm

    Hi there Lorenzo,

    I just wanted to express my gratitude for all the great work and effort you have put into the psychedelic salon. Its a wonderful place and I’m forever directing enquiring minds here to connect with the tribe and join in the Great Conversation.

    Much love to you all <3

  9. Keith Cycloid Said,

    January 12, 2013 @ 5:12 pm

    Çatal Hüyük – NatureLovesCourage is available!

    CD Baby: http://www.cdbaby.com/cd/NatureLovesCourage
    iTunes Store: https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/catal-huyuk/id375592859

  10. Keith Cycloid Said,

    January 12, 2013 @ 5:18 pm

    yes, this is a great talk, and a new one!

    Responding to Lorenzo’s comment at the end of the podcast, I don’t think the written word would qualify for the transition to visible language, since the written word is essentially phonetically-transcribed symbolic language. The development/evolution/emergence/design of “visually-apprehendable language,” where “we see what each other means” is another level that is almost beyond our comprehension. So in some sense even the octopus example—while I love it—is imperfect. The patterns and colors of the octopi are also symbolic. For example, the octopus doesn’t feel “rugose” or a certain color, it must be a symbol for something else.

    After referencing his position on the likely importance of mushrooms in the emergence of language, Dennis mentions a similar thing in his book (Chapter 34): “In reading, the process is similar, except that a written symbol or word evokes an inner perception of the sound that is associated with the written word or symbol, and this, in turn, evokes an inner visualization of the meaningful symbol or word associated with that sound. Is this not also synesthsia?”

    Somewhat related, have heard so much talk and thinking a bit about the “seamless transition to visual language” that this product pitch really caught my eye this morning: “Magical speaker that visualizes music” — of course it’s very simple and really not anywhere near what we’re talking about http://www.ubergizmo.com/2012/12/the-acase-black-diamond-3-bluetooth-speakers-is-definitely-unique/


    ps. I highly recommend Dennis’ book to anyone here. Only about halfway through, but it’s excellent, even just as a “growing up in the 60s” story with loads of McKenna brilliance too http://www.amazon.com/The-Brotherhood-Screaming-Abyss-ebook/dp/B00A8KWLYK/

  11. Chemycal Romance Said,

    January 19, 2013 @ 5:09 pm

    Regarding “Nature Loves Courage,” the entirety of it is downloadable on Spotify

  12. Russell Said,

    March 21, 2013 @ 3:51 am

    Oh good lord – I have only finally gotten around to listening to this today.

    As often as I think Terence is spouting a load of crap, with fair regularity he comes out with blindingly incisive gems such as this:

    “And yet my, not only my faith, but my experience has led me to believe that the world is not a construction of space and time and matter and energy. That that mapping is insufficient. That the world is instead some kind of a linguistic construct. It is more in the nature of a sentence, or a novel, or a work of art than it is in the nature of these machine models of interlocking law that we inherit out of a thousand years of rational reductionism.”

    Thank you, Terence – and Thank you Lorenzo for bringing it to us.