Archive for Language

Podcast 387 – “February 1994 Workshop Introduction”

Guest speaker: Terence McKenna

The pool at the Chan Kha Hotel near the ruins at Palenque, Mexico. The far end of the pool is where Terence Mckenna often lectured.

PROGRAM NOTES:

[NOTE: All quotations are by Terence McKenna.]
“Psychedelics, by metling assumptions, by destroying the expectations of rigid educations creates a fluidity of possibility that may allow answers to emerge. And it’s the only thing that I’ve seen that operates on a time scale sufficiently short to have an impact.”

“Language is a strategy for binding time.”

“The other thing is that biology works. It’s very successful. It’s been around more than a billion years. Civilization doesn’t work. It’s been around 10,000 years, and it’s on the brink of meltdown.”

“We fabricate ideas out of matter. No other creature does that.”

“One of the unique things that is happening on the planet is that the fate of all life is becoming hinged to the decisions made by a single species.”

“If there’s not free will, then thinking is meaningless.”

“But all we have to do is hit one speed bump, and democratic values are down the drain.”

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Podcast 386 – “Loose Ends Time”

Guest speaker: Terence McKenna

Terence McKenna . . . photo credit: Steve Marshank

PROGRAM NOTES:

[NOTE: All quotations are by Terence McKenna.]

“That’s the key thing that the archaic world knew that we don’t know: How do you live in equilibrium so that your children may live in equilibrium, because otherwise you get a cycle started that’s going to shove somebody over the cliff. And that somebody in the present case is either ourselves, our children, or their children. It’s no further away in time than that.”

“We love to congratulate ourselves on the forward-leaning liberal society that we live in, and the truth is it’s a bunch of rattle snake-handling fundamentalists that are much closer to Stalin than they are to FDR or anybody else like that.”

“If you look at the fossil record, 95% of all the species that have ever lived on the Earth are extinct. From that point of view it looks as though biology is a process for producing extinction.”

“You talk about a well-kept secret that’s only two tokes away? How do they keep the lid on this? That’s the miracle to me. How do they keep the lid on this?” [smoked NN-DMT]

“These chemicals, these plant hallucinogens, are pheromones laden with messages for humanity, but you have to pick up the telephone.”

“I think the world is growing more psychedelic every day. I’m completely hopeful. . . . This is how it should be. This is what it’s like when a species prepares to depart for hyperspace.”

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Hallucinogens and Shamanism by Michael J. Harner

The Terence McKenna Experience by Ken Adams

Quasar shines a bright light on cosmic web

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Podcast 372 – “The Intentionality of Meaning”

Guest speaker: Terence McKenna

PROGRAM NOTES:

[NOTE: All quotations are by Terence McKenna.]

“The world is not made of anti-mu mesons, quarks, and photons, and electromagnetic fields. Reality is made of words.”

“Language is something that springs from the biological matrix, and the neurological matrix, within us.”

“Culture is more and more consciously becoming a project carried out in the domain of language by, for instance, propaganda both governmental and commercial.”

“Once they pledge allegiance to a given model of reality, then that absolves all necessity for further thought.”

“Television, introduced at the close of World War II, has become a form of electronic heroin, and it isn’t even your trip. They don’t even let you go on your own trip, you get a trip designed by Madison Avenue.”

“I’m not an advocate for everything that rolls out of the laboratory. I’m an advocate for things sanctioned by millennia of usage.”

“I’m not an advocate of drugs. I’m an advocate of psychedelics.”

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Podcast 370 – “Modeling Human History”

Guest speaker: Terence McKenna

Painting of Terence McKenna by Jo Trott

PROGRAM NOTES:

[NOTE: All quotations are by Terence McKenna.]

“History is like self-reflection through the medium of language propelling itself into self-recognition.”

“Clearly, what is happening, I think, is there is a kind of global emergence of a new mental order.”

“The central figure in the archaic revival is the shaman.”

“We are caught in a tremendous historical crisis. And what we lack, in this crisis, is consciousness, whatever that means, the ability to integrate data about the situation we are in.”

“We are like coral animals in a vast reef of excreted technological material that is wired for solid state data transfer.”

“Notice that the whole story of Eden is the story of the struggle over a woman’s relationship to a psychoactive plant.”

“The reason I am so passionately committed to the psychedelic thing is because I see it as radical, and if this is not the moment for radical solutions, what is?”

“What we need to change is our minds, that’s the part that’s doing us dirt and dragging us under. How can we change our minds.”

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Book mentioned in this podcast

The Great Drug War: And Rational Proposals To Turn The Tide
Arnold S. Trebach

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Podcast 368 – “Psychedelics and the Feminine”

Guest speaker: Terence McKenna

PROGRAM NOTES:

[NOTE: All quotations are by Terence McKenna.]

“The Gaian process is more than a process. It is s self-reflecting entelechy of some sort.”

“It is curious that what these psychedelics do, on a scale of a community, is they release new ideas. . . . And that this is how culture moves forward. That culture is a phenomenon dependent on the generation of ideas, plans, notions, connections. So this is precisely what these compounds are doing.”

“What is always left out of descriptions of the psychedelic state, the deep psychedelic state, is how weird it is.”

“I finally realized that this ‘place’ that I kept bursting into [on a psychedelic experience] was somebody’s idea of a playpen.”

“We [psychonauts] are all going to go into the books as pioneers, because it’s too early for us to be anything else. There’s no map, no finished database, just anecdotes of the crazy, crazy stuff that goes on. That’s why it’s so important to try and share [our stories].”

“The world isn’t this unbelievably strange thing which is ‘out there’. The world is this stranger-than-we-can-suppose thing which begins from the core of us out. That means nothing can be taken for granted. It can be taken apart. It can be put together many, many ways.”

“[DMT] is pure, one hundred per-cent magic. MAGIC. It’s not a drug. It’s an event. It’s not something you do. It’s something that happens to you.”

McKenna also describes a DMT experience as, “A collision with another modality.”

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Books Mentioned in this podcast

The Chalice and the Blade: Our History, Our Future
Riane Eisler


The Creative Explosion: An Inquiry into the Origins of Art and Religion (Cornell paperbacks)

The Botany and Chemistry of Hallucinogens (American Lecture Series)
Richard Evans Schultes

Plants of the Gods: Their Sacred, Healing, and Hallucinogenic Powers
Richard Evans Schultes, Albert Hofmann, Christian Rätsch

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Podcast 367 – “The Evolution of a Psychedelic Thinker”

Guest speaker: Terence McKenna

PROGRAM NOTES:

[NOTE: All quotations are by Terence McKenna.]

“This is a very central part of the psychedelic attitude toward the world, to entertain all possibilities but to never commit to belief. Belief always being seen as a kind of trap, because if you belief something you are forever precluded from believing its opposite..”

“In a sense, sexuality is the built-in psychedelic experience that only a very few people manage to evade.”

“Eros is an ego-overwhelming, boundary dissolving, breakthrough creating force scripted into human life that is pretty intrinsically psychedelic.”

“One of the core elements of this psychedelic thing is freedom, on the broadest scale.”

“Nothing is as boundary dissolving, except for psychedelic compounds, as travel. Travel is up there.”

“I have nothing but scorn for all weird ideas other than my own.”

“Without an understanding and a familiarity of the psychedelic experience you should be sued for fraud if you’re practicing psychotherapy.”

“The archaic revival is an invitation to historical humanity to view itself as a kind of a prodigal son.”

“What the psychedelics are for us as a species, rather than for each one of us as an individual, what they are for us as a species is an enzyme that catalyzes the language-making capacity.”

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Symbiosis Gathering 2013

The Transcendent Nature of Symbiosis Festival

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Podcast 347 – “This counts, somehow it matters”

Guest speaker: Terence McKenna

PROGRAM NOTES:

[NOTE: All quotations are by Terence McKenna.]

“Our best efforts are nothing more than half-completed stories told around the campfire. We don’t actually know what our predicament is. We are up against a phenomenon which we can barely bring into focus in our cognitive sphere, and it’s the phenomenon of our own existence”

“These religions that are so freighted with their own pomposity are no better than inspired guesses.”

“Science works its miracles by turning its enterprise into a kind of parlor game confined to the category matter and energy.”

“In other words, all these things you might cling to, Catholicism, democratic ideals, Hasidism, Marxism, Freudianism, all of these things are exposed [through use of psychedelics] as simply quaint cultural artifacts, tainted masks and rattles assembled by people of good intent but clearly not great grasp of the situation.”

“To date, the enterprise of thinking has moved us radically away from understanding anything.”

“For me, what all these years of psychedelic taking came to was a new model of how reality works, a new model of what the world is.”

“And what is the primary datum? It’s the felt presence of immediate experience. In other words, being here now is the primary datum.”

“We need a metaphor that can contain the demon of the future that we have conjured into being.”

“Fine tuning the institutions built by powdered wig guys two hundred years ago is a long shot at holding the whole thing together.”

“Now, through the catalytic interaction with technology, the human species is getting set to redefine itself.” [Note: this comment was made a dozen years before the iPhone was released.]

“As I see it, Being, the Cosmos, whatever you want to call it, is a struggle between two implacable forces: Novelty on the one side and habit on the other side.”

“The sensory ratios that are being reinforced by the new electronic technology are like the sensory ratios that were in place fifteen thousand years ago. . . . Print imposes a condition on human mind which is now lifting.”

“History was an incredibly damaging experience, and now it’s over . . . in a sense.”

“What was created by the era of the proper gentleman was excellent table manners and genocide over most of the surface of the planet.”

“To me, the psychedelic experience is the experience of trying to make sense of reality.”

“If psychedelics are, on any level, to be taken seriously as catalyzers or expanders of consciousness, then we need them, because it’s an absence of consciousness that is making this historical transition so excruciating.”

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MAPS Psychedelic Science 2013 Conference


Books Mentioned in this podcast

Where Wizards Stay Up Late: The Origins Of The Internet
By Katie Hafner

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Podcast 344 – “A Global Cultural Crisis”

Guest speaker: Terence McKenna

PROGRAM NOTES:

[NOTE: All quotations are by Terence McKenna.]

“I’m proposing on one level that hallucinogens be thought of as almost as social pheromones that regulate the rate at which language develops, and therefore regulate human culture generally.”

“Where psychedelics comes together with that is that it’s going to require a transformation of human language and understanding to stop the momentum of the historical process, to halt nuclear proliferation, germ warfare, infantile 19th century politics, all these things. It cannot be accomplished through a frontal assault upon it by political means.”

“Transformation of language through psychedelic drugs is a central factor of the evolution of the social matrix of the rest of the century.” (quote from 1983)

“Tribalism is a social form which can exist at any level of technology. It’s a complete illusion to associate it with low levels of technology. It is probably, in fact, a form of social organization second only to the family in its ability to endure.”

“I think there is a global commonality of understanding coming into being. And it is not necessarily fostered by institutions.”

“If I had to pick an ontological vision that was compatible with what I think these drugs are about, and with what I think is trying to happen, I would pick Taoism.”

“So it’s [shamanism] a kind of a profession. It’s almost like clergy. It’s to be deputized by the society as an ecstatic for the purpose of introducing back into society the material that comes from the mystical voyage for purposes of cultural renewal.”

“The history of man that you don’t know is what your unconscious is made out of.”

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Books mentioned in this podcast

A People’s History of the United States: 1492 to Present
By Howard Zinn

Burr: A Novel
By Gore Vidal

Perpetual War for Perpetual Peace: How We Got to Be So Hated
By Gore Vidal

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Podcast 339 – “A Necessary Chaos”

Guest speaker: Terence McKenna

PROGRAM NOTES:

[NOTE: All quotations are by Terence McKenna.]

“This is where I think the psychedelics come in, because they are anticipations of the future. They seem to channel information that is not strictly governed by the laws of normal causality. So that there really is a prophetic dimension, a glimpse of the potential of the far centuries of the future through these compounds.”

“Actually, the highest form of human organization is not realized in the democratic individual. It is realized in a dimension none of us have ever penetrated, which is the mind of the species, which is actually the hand at the tiller of history. . . . It is an organized entelechy of some sort, and human history is its signature on the primates.”

“I think it’s the sheer power of the hallucinogens that puts people off. You either love them or you hate them, and that’s because they dissolve world views. And if you like the experience of having your entire ontological structure disappear out from under you, if you think that’s a thrill, you’ll probably love psychedelics.”

“The leading edge of reality is mind, and mind is the primary substratum of being.”

“We can no longer have forbidden areas of the human mind, or cultural machinery. We have taken upon ourselves the acquisition of so much power that we now must understand what we are. We cannot travel much further with the definitions of man that we inherit from the Judeo-Christian tradition. We need to truly explore the problem of consciousness.”

“Capitalism is a gun pointed at the head of global civilization.”

“The way I think of the psychedelics is, they are catalysts to the imagination.”

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Podcast 326 – “Avoiding the Pitfall of Words”

Guest speaker: J. Krishnamurti

J. Krishnamurti ONLINE

PROGRAM NOTES:

[NOTE: All quotations are by J. Krishnamurti.]

“The crisis is not in the outward technological advancement, but rather in the way we think, and the way we live, and the way we feel. I think that is where a revolution must take place.”

“No revolution, psychologically I’m talking about, is possible if there is merely the imitation of a particular ideology. To me, all ideologies are idiotic.”

“What has meaning is what IS, not what should be.”

“I think that is the worst thing one can do, to break up one’s own existence into various fragments, and that’s where contradiction lies.”

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Safe Access Now

Martin Wittfooth Web Site

Corey Helford Gallery

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