The Next Step

At the height of the first wave of psychedelia in the 1960s, Ken Kesey promoted the idea of the “Next Step”, which at the time he envisaged as "Beyond Acid". But what if acid was merely the latest in a long line of entheogens secreted by the planet to regulate humans and each one was merely a stepping-stone to the Gaian awareness of hyper-dimensional connectivity? What if the next step was a post-human species upgrade seeded by entheogenesis and synchronizing with the galactic alignment an intensified energetic bombardment? What if we all had it within us to be gods? Then what?


What I'm hoping to do here is tie together quite a lot of different entheogenic and psychedelic history into some idea clusters and bring it together in a way that hopefully solidifies and brings the big picture into perspective and a pattern that we can use to move forward with. So, it starts as all good psychedelic stories start: at the beginning, with the creator in the lab. Albert Hofmann and the 25th batch of lysergic acid. And this is a quote from his biography LSD: My Problem Child:

 "On the afternoon of April 16, 1943 while preparing derivatives of lysergic acid, I had to leave my lab suddenly. I felt something was happening to me. Whatever I imagined came into my mind as images. It was a horror trip and I felt like the end was nigh. I thought that this was the end but in the morning I felt reinvigorated as if new life was entering my body. It was a wonderful feeling. It was impossible to describe how wonderful the experience was.”

Now, Albert Hofmann said he had a peculiar presentiment, they’re his exact words. To re-examine this chemical, first synthesized five years earlier and then left on the shelf when animal tests proved inconclusive. Albert Hofmann was actually a meticulous chemist. He followed all the rules. He was Swiss, they were ingrained in his nature. He was researching the ergot derivatives, looking for patentable material for the company's Sandoz at the time in regard to childbirth and creating new drugs to help with alleviating pain and issues around childbirth.

Strangely, he used the term peculiar presentiment. That's his translation of the term in English language. This is a thing. We only have a very slim vocabulary in English language to describe certain mystical or psychedelic ideas or states, but in the Greek we have eureka, which means sort of the breakthrough moment. We also have in English the term ‘a bolt from the blue’. There are quite a few different little linguistic sayings which all refer to this idea that information or ideas are transmitted from basically outside of the human mind.

 It comes from somewhere greater than us and things transmit from the beyond, which raises the question, what is it that is beyond and what is that intelligence, perhaps, that is transmitting the ideas. Albert Hofmann said:

"LSD came to me. I didn't look for it. LSD wanted to be found. It wanted to tell me something. If I had worked 100 % safely and taken all proper precautions, then we would not be here today. So sometimes it pays not to be perfect." 

1. A Peculiar Presentiment Births Us All

That was a quote from his 2006 conference, the 100th birthday of Albert Hofmann, where he was the most honored and revered speaker. He did joke around about that, but other people and other critics and other psychedelic commentators have said that he's sort of being disingenuous because he didn't make mistakes, he wasn't that type of chemist, and it's not even about making mistakes, it's what are the odds of him going back to a random chemical, one of thousands he worked with five years later, it just doesn't happen. It's outside the book something, as he says, a strange presentiment, some force, some intuition or some intelligence, some fragment came down from somewhere else, and he connected with his material.

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Now, it's also said that LSD is transmitted in such minute quantities that perhaps he got some on his skin or inhaled some, but it's been said that that probably wouldn't have happened. I mean, it's not likely in the conditions of the lab at the time, that that was the case. At the Symposium, he revealed a lot about his origins, a lot about where he came from, his childhood in Basil, in the fields, in the woods, in nature, basically and that he was basically a mystic being. His childhood was very immersed in nature, and he often felt this sensitivity towards the currents and the energies of nature itself. So, he was mystically predisposed to begin with, is what I'm trying to say here.

So, Albert Hofmann started the chemical, laboratory -driven psychedelic experience in the early 40s. Now, LSD is extracted from ergot derivatives used by midwives for centuries to stop post -childbirth bleeding. The ergot rye is a fungus that swept through the Middle Ages causing mass hallucinations and biblical revelations for millions. It was called St. Anthony's Fire. So, the bike ride this modern shaman went on also helped unlock a 4 ,000 -year -old secret, first used as part of the Eleusian mysteries by the ancient Greeks.

2. The Ancient World was Lit

This is because the active ingredients in LSD were later, in tests in the 50s, found to be very, very similar to the active properties in morning glory seeds, or Ololiuqui , used by Mesoamerican tribes. When these Ololiuqui morning glory seeds were analyzed by Hofmann himself, again in the lab in the 1950s, he coined them LSA, which is like one molecule different from LSD, and what he insured and what he realized in a chemical scientific sense is that because it's only one chemical different from LSD itself.

LSD is most likely something that is probable to occur in nature. LSA does and LSD is just one little tweak different. In that 25 derivation of the LSD compounds that he tinkered with in the lab, he was basically doing nature's work. It's not something that is hideously, chemically alien and foreign to the natural ecosystem. LSD and hallucinogenic chemicals are in nature in many, many different species and LSD is very close in the lab to natural substances.

The psychedelic wave hit and later in the 80s, we're going to jump around and be here, later in the 80s, post the 60s backlash of psychedelics, entheogens was a term that was invented to get around the tarnish that these sacred substances had occurred before and in the 60s. The term entheogen was coined by Jonathan Ott, Albert Hoffman himself, Carl Ruck and a few others in the 1980s to rebrand these sacred substances from the street-tainted psychedelics that had caused such social unrest and change in the 1960s that they were banned.

The word entheogen is Latin for “evoking the divine within”, and was actually coined in 1978. Originally psychedelics were called biomimetics or you know psychoactives or hallucinogens.

They've gone through a lot of name changes as science and the culture around science tries to grapple with these substances and where they fit in their little pigeonholes. But what really is happening here, what entheogens was, the rebranding was trying to convey, is that it doesn't fit neatly into a little pigeonhole, it actually fits into a larger planetary ecosystem.

These substances come from the planet, and they're basically secreted or produced by the planet for specific purposes. Now, entheogens is a nice little term, and many of these substances, perhaps like magic mushrooms, ayahuasca at times, other things, do evoke higher consciousness or altered states, but do they really evoke the divine within, and what do we mean by that?

I'm trying to suggest here, let's not get hooked up on the term and think that all these substances invoke the same divine from the same within, and let's try to look at the broad palette of experiences here. To retrofit this, invoking the divine within or even with psychedelic-centred manifests the mind, what would that have meant to post -World War II white picket fence America, a culture that eradicated all its entheogenic plants in a race for material domination of the world?

3. MK-Ultra: Evolving America Forward

In the 1950s, after Albert Hoffman in 1943, LSD was taken up by the CIA, it was taken by the medical laboratories and the psychotherapy community, but by the 1950s, it still hadn't made a big impact. By the early 1950s, the only real people on the planet who retained an unbroken thread of connection to the vegetal world, and the entheogens of the mind -manifesting plants and the secrets they're in, were the indigenous tribes, the ones who had been conquered perhaps, but not eradicated in the jungles, their entheogenic connection.

So, by the 1950s, we have a culture that, you know, Sputnik was launched in 1957, Leave it to Beaver premiered on TV, and conversely, Jack Kerouac’s On the Road was published, which really shows that there was still this thread of counterculture in the western cultures with the beatniks, but still it was a world with only a dim memory of the role of mind-altering mushrooms and other entheogens as religious sacraments, and even then they were codified and ambiguous, wrapped in mythology and fairy tales.

In the early 50s we had the first wave of western god seekers, people like Aldous Huxley, the writer and intellectual. Huxley, in May, 1953–less than a month after the CIA initiated Operation MK Ultra–tried mescaline for the first time at his home in the Hollywood Hills in California, under Humphrey Osmond's supervision.

"It was," he said, "without question the most extraordinary and significant experience this side of the beatific vision. Moreover, it opened up a host of philosophical problems through intense light and raised all manner of questions in the fields of aesthetics, religion and the theory of knowledge."

The famous quote from the book Doors of Perception and Heaven and Hell from Huxley is this:

To be shaken out of the ruts of ordinary perception, to be shown for a few timeless hours the outer and inner world, not as they appear to an animal obsessed with survival, or to a human being obsessed with words and notions, but as they are apprehended directly and unconditionally by mind at large, this is an experience of inestible value to everyone, and especially to the intellectual.

Now as LSD and things like mescaline, but mainly LSD, started to come out into the scientific and the medical community, different strands of approaches of how these sacred substances should be integrated into the western culture developed.

Huxley had this idea that the intellectuals should be the ones who should be turned on first. It should be trickled down from the government and the politicians and the scientists and the elites basically. If they could be turned on and aligned more with the inner spiritual experience then that can be disseminated basically to the masses.

Ultimately that was a strategy which didn't work because of a lot of cultural vectors that came up we'll discuss in a moment. But in hindsight I think he may have been right and we'll get to that in a minute.

4. Gordon Wasson, the Bruce Wayne of Early Psychedelia

This is the early 1950s we're talking about. LSD is still slowly percolating but mescaline is out there, it's still quite a rare substance which is probably only available in the San Pedro Cactus in Peru to very few select Westerners, or in the lab when isolated, again to a few select individuals.

But at this stage in history, what happens is a man called Gordon Wasson, who with his wife Valencia, who was a Russian mycologist and mycrophile, a mushroom lover, who had grown up around the mushrooms in Russia–all different types of mushrooms, including psychedelic mushrooms–and was quite a connoisseur of them, had shared her passions with her husband Gordon Wasson, who was a New York banker, very high up in the establishment, the elites that Aldous Huxley was talking about.

This is 1955. The mushrooms' role in the history of Western culture had been effectively extinguished from memory when Gordon Wasson and his photographer, Alan Richardson, came to the remote Oaxacan village of Huatala de Jimenez in mid-1955 and chanced upon the curandera or shaman, Donna Maria Sabina. On the night of June 29-30, she led a velada, or vigil, which Wasson likened to “a holy communion, where divine mushrooms were first adored and then consumed.”

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These are the infamous flesh of the gods, the psilocybin mushrooms, which had basically been eradicated from the Western knowledge banks. When the Spanish invaders had gone over to South America, they saw them as not the flesh of the gods, but the work of the devil. They eradicated them, they put their Christian churches on their holy sites, they killed all the natives who consumed the mushrooms and revered them, and the mushrooms and their usage had retreated to the remote villages like Maria Sabina's.

Wasson used his money as a New York banker–he was with the Chase Manhattan Bank, the vice president, like one of the top establishment elite people–to fund partially himself and in concert with other grant monies he got from organizations including a CIA Front, a part of the MK-Ultra initiative that was funding research into mind altering substances. He apparently did not know that at the time. Anyway, so Wasson was sponsored and self-funded a lot of these trips to South America and Mesoamerica and through a very serendipitous chain of events, met Maria Sabina.

5. Maria Sabina, Curandera

He tries what Maria Sabina calls the little Ninos, the spirits in the mushrooms. Now Sabina was a curandero who used the mushrooms for healing and connecting with the spirit world. Wasson described his experience with the mushrooms as a soul shattering happening. The sacred mushroom, he said:

“Allows one to see more clearly than a mortal eye can see vistas beyond the horizons of this life.”

Now how unusual must such a claim have been in the cultural environment of 1950s America, as we described before? This is something to think about. LSD comes out in 1943. It was first synthesized in '38 and made the jump in '43 because it was on the shelf and saying it needed to come through.

Mescaline was coming through in the early '50s with Huxley. Mushrooms made this triumphant return to public consciousness in 1955 through Gordon Wasson. And in 1957, his story, his article on the magic mushrooms was published in Life Magazine, the equivalent of Time Magazine, one of the most premier Western vectors for getting information out to the mainstream.

So, something seems to be going on in a very short amount of time. Three of these main substances start to percolate into the Western mind-frame. What happened after that was that Wasson's ground-breaking work with the mushrooms soon spread like information spores in the global psychotherapy network.

6. Enter, the Most Dangerous Man Alive!

An up-and-coming Harvard psychologist named Timothy Leary tried magic mushrooms while on holiday in Mexico in 1960, inspired by Frank Barron, a colleague who had read about Wasson's article. Leary later said it was “above all and without question the deepest religious experience of my life. I saw a cellular history of the past God and the devil all lie inside my body outside my mind.”

 And that's an interesting quote because he's talking about the cellular history, the network when we're looking at the etymology and the thinking behind these entheogens or invoking the divine within or psyche manifesting, mind manifesting. What followed next was the Harvard psilocybin project which experimented with Leary's early work with the psychology of game-playing.

In 1961 after a period of controversial self-experimentation, Leary instigated psilocybin tests for alcoholism and personality disorders at Concord prison. In concert with Walter Pahnke, a physician and minister, Leary later conducted a further controversial psilocybin experiment in 1962 to Harvard Divinity students to induce religious states.

 In a few short years the sacred mushroom had travelled from the wild hills of Mexico to the honoured halls of Harvard as the Western fascination with the nature of consciousness and the knowledge and power it represented escalated. 

I think what's really interesting here is that like the mushrooms itself it seems like there's a mycelium network or this idea of a network and this idea of sporing and information vectors that it spreads throughout.

These substances whether they're called psychedelic or entheogens quickly travelled down these pathways as they basically infected Western culture. Now in the 1950s it was also the era of the communist scare, of the Cold War, of the nuclear bomb hanging over culture. As well as all of that, LSD also gave off its fair share of psychic fallout. Underground tests and volunteers by the British and American military were common and the powers of the time reported that if LSD could be fired in a rocket and released over the Soviet Union: "It could, at a stroke, put the entire Red Army out of action." Now these are quotes from Martin A. Lee, author of Acid Dreams, The Complete Social History of LSD, who goes on to say:

 "There was over a decade of legal and illegal testing of LSD, by the CIA, on its own men, from 1953 to 1966, when they dosed unsuspecting doctors and servicemen, the CIA space cowboys, they called them, to see if the chemical would make an efficient brainwashing mechanism. There were even plans, later overridden, to dose the punch at the 1954 CIA Christmas Party."

What we're getting to here with all these strands is that entheogens, psychedelics, psychomimetics: mind-altering substances were the bee's knees. They were just exploding everywhere in military use, in divinity use of the Harvard Divinity School and Harvard itself, with the psychotherapy, all through California, but the effects of LSD also run deeper than this.

7. Psychedelics Stretch Linear Consciousness
into Distributed Consciousness

There are reports of key figures in information age that spawned the personal computer revolution using LSD as a creativity drug. In 2006, at Albert Hoffman's Symposium, Wired Magazine wrote an article that said, "This gathering included a discussion of how early computer pioneers used LSD for inspiration. Douglas Engelbart, the inventor of the mouse, Myron Stoleroff, a former Ampex engineer, an LSD researcher, and Apple co-founder Steve Jobs, are all amongst people who admitted taking LSD.

In the 2005 book, What the Door Mouse Said, New York Times reporter John Markov quotes Steve Jobs as saying: "His LSD experiences were one or two or three of the most important things he has done in his life." One lecture at the Symposium in 2006 said, quite succinctly, “From open mind to open source." Jason Lanier, one of the pioneers of the late 1990s virtual reality industry, has said on record: "Almost to a person, the founders of the personal computer industry were the psychedelic-style hippies. Within the computer science community, there's a very strong connection with the 1960s psychedelic tradition. Absolutely no question about it."

So why is this, one might ask? Geographically, you must understand that as LSD use peaked in the west coast of America throughout the 1950s, it happened around psychotherapy clinics and the doctors using it. One of the epi-centers was Palo Alto, which later became Silicon Valley in the 1960s.Now this is geographic ground zero for the computer revolution.

Another quote on this theme is from Eric Davis, who says, "Etymologically speaking, after all, computers are literally psychedelic. That is, they manifest the mind." And  here's another quote. Timothy Leary referred to the 1967 Be-In as “the dawning of the psychedelic cybernetic age, a post-political movement whose message is freedom and whose medium is electronic information.”

The deeper issue for me isn't just who took what. It's what did the mushroom and LSD and these mind-enhancing substances do to the minds of the intelligentsia that took them? They did later produce personal computers and the internet. Now I'm not saying here that they took LSD and they discovered the internet or the personal computer. Francis Crick, for instance, is on record as admitting to LSD use as a creativity tool that helped him engender a state of mind in which he solved some of the problems relating to the formulation of DNA.

What we're saying here is that all these companies at the time, it was like an arms race, but it was a mind race. They all used LSD all throughout Silicon Valley, what was to become Silicon Valley, and all the big companies, because it enhanced creativity. 

And when they're using it in that set and setting, as Leary was later to give the context to, it didn't become a spiritual drug–it often became a problem-solving drug.

But how ironic that taking LSD and the magic mushrooms and things like that basically gave them a mental template for networks and natural systems… it’s like what was later to be called in current terminology biomimicry, the ability to replicate natural systems and networks and patterns and the way nature does things for our own technological uses. Ultimately, we must remember that technology is a manifestation of our mind. It’s psychedelic as well, it's manifesting from the mind.

It's also exo-somatic, that is, it's not a genetic change but our culture all the technology and all our artifacts on the exterior are manifestations of our mind, so they're all technically mind-manifesting. But it seems to be throughout the 1950s what LSD and the other psychedelic entheogens were doing was opening up pathways of the mind, enhancing creativity and also giving this ability of biomimicry, or templates about networks to be able to disseminate into the human culture.

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So we could say in a sense, when we look at who is being turned on by these substances, it's almost like the classic alien line, you know, from the 1950s Hollywood films, an alien comes down to Earth and says, “take me to your leader.” And the mushrooms and LSD went to the top of the memetic food chain in 1950s and 1960s culture–they went to Harvard, they went to the doctors they went to the scientists, they went to the proto-Silicon Valley community and they went through the military.

They went through the CIA and it is quite substantially not just rumored, but there is quite a lot of circumstantial evidence they even went as high as president John Fitzgerald Kennedy himself. Now if you were an interdimensional intelligence phase-spacing with the indigenous consciousness of this frequency, wouldn't those be the nodal points to infect and inflect? It makes you wonder.

8. Owsley, dig?

So, we're moving through history and now in 2009, here at EGA, the infamous and much-loved 1960s counter-cultural figure, "Bear" Owsley Stanley, spoke. He came out over a time in 2009 and basically gave us a bit of a brain dump on his history and his thoughts on the 60s.

And one of the things he took point with, with his whole notion of entheogens being invokers of the divine within, he basically said that he thought the term entheogens was a crock of shit and that things like acid didn't invoke a God within. It was merely an amplifier.

He said that “if you gave acid to a Hell's Angel, you'd get a Hell's Angel and acid. You'd get someone who loved to fight because it seemed like everyone else was moving in slow motion. If you gave acid to a scientist looking for a creativity tool, that's what you got. They got the creativity tool. It brings out or it amplifies what you have within you.”

It's a very interesting theory as well. There seems to be credence for that. Acid itself may not be invoking the divine within, but playing around with the parameters of the mind and bringing out more of what's inside a person.

Now I bring up Bear Owsley because he had some also very deeper theories about where this all goes and how this ties back into a more planetary, homogenous sort of homeostatic system. Basically, he came up with the idea that it's not just acid because he was hep to the morning glory seeds and the psilocybin and the DMT and all the plant entheogens as well. And he realized that basically the planet is secreting these plants, right? It's like these substances in the plants are secreted and created by the planet and the planet does not make mistakes.

The planet is, you know, it's the mother in some spiritual circles, but it's the Gaian entelechy, it's the soul, it's the world spirit and even just as a whole earth system, you know, you can look at the organic machine sort of metaphors for this, but it's very, very efficient. It doesn't make mistakes in the sense that no energy is lost. It's not just that energy is not created or destroyed. Nature maximizes the yields. It's the ultimate permaculture system.

So, Owsley realized throughout his experiences on mind-altering substances that the planet itself is secreting mind-altering substances for a reason. And he said in 2009 here at EGA, "I think we're throwing away something the planet has sent us, sent to help us for many years with the war on drugs, and that has developed along with us and is important. That's what these plants are. They don't turn us into a god. They turn us into something else. It's another step of some sort in our evolutionary process. The planet, through the plants and the psychedelic drugs, has given us the planetary hormone to do that. Nothing else makes sense."

Now, to illustrate that argument, Bear Owsley gave us the example of cannabis. He says that cannabis has been groomed to be psychoactive over many, many decades, if not centuries. And cannabis and other psychoactive plants have an interdependent relationship with their users, a plant-human symbiosis that shapes each other for the maximum benefit. In an interview with David Gans in 1990, Bear said that “the cannabis plant seems to specifically produce its resin to intoxicate man in a pleasant fashion so that man is now interested in the plant. The plant has latched on to producing a substance that is so pleasant for the man that he will care for it and propagate it. Obviously, it's derived from the early hemp plantations established in Mexico by the Spanish settlers.”

Bear went on to say that, "As the Spanish brought the hemp plants with them, which they used for making, you know, fibre and clothes and the sails of their ships, it was basically a hemaphrodite plant. But as the hemp plant was taken off by the indigenous Indians into the woods, over the next 400 years or so, they selected it to do what they wanted. And what they wanted to do was alter their minds.”

So, cannabis became a shamanic plant. Yet again, it's an example of this exo-pheromonic ability of humans interacting with the plant and the plant grooming us to have mental effects. Now, Bear went on to say in an interview with Eisner in 1997:

"With a plant that has literally hundreds of thousands of species of animals and plants yet to be discovered, you cannot definitively say that this or that compound does not naturally occur. I mean, how long ago was it that they thought that ergot alkaloids only existed in various forms of fungus? When they discovered them in morning glory seeds, people thought there had to be a contamination in the laboratory, that there was something wrong there. The fact of the matter is that there are probably hundreds of extremely powerful psychedelic plants that are just not yet known to modern science.”

9. Terence McKenna and the Gaian Entrainment

Another famous figure who promoted the idea of entheogens as planetary hormones evolving us forward is of course Terence McKenna. He had the whole theory about the stoned apes on the savannah with the magic mushrooms catalyzing the early hominid consciousness and bootstrapping us up into language and art and all the higher faculty mind facilities that make us human.

 So, you know, it's been going on if we run with this theory since before we were human, and there's also no reason to think that it stopped when we became human. And so, if this is true, it's obviously an ongoing process. You know, it's an intelligently responsive process that the planet uses and it alters the type of exo-pheromones according to the need at the time.

McKenna had this little riff that he said in his talk: "plan plant planet". McKenna said that "My conclusion is that taking the next evolutionary step towards the archaic revival, the rebirth of the goddess and the ending of profane history will require an agenda that includes the notion of our re-involvement with the emergence of the vegetable mind. That same mind that coaxed us into self-reflexive language now offers us the boundless landscape through the imagination."

Without such a relationship to psychedelic exo-pheromones regulating our symbiotic relationship with the plant kingdom, we stand outside of an understanding of planetary purpose and an understanding of planetary purpose may be the major contribution we can make to the evolutionary process itself.

In a nutshell I think that some of our great psychedelic theorists and thinkers like Terence and Bear Owsley have all come to the same conclusion. It's that you know, things like acid and mescaline and magic mushrooms and we must therefore include you know all the plant entheogens, have different specific triggers and different responses in the human gene pool that takes them, but they're all like a palette that nature uses to connect with the primates–essentially us–and to evolve us forward in ways to bring us into a grand cycle or into alignment with a larger rhythm that is the correct rhythm, the homeostatic rhythm the planet wants for its species to be in to be stabilized and in concert with other species on the planet.

10. Madre Ayahuasca and the Plant Spirits

If these things are ongoing, what can we see in the cultural history before us? From the 1950s on we had the 1960s psychedelic revolution which we'll talk about in a bit more. We had dissemination through the 1970s of the peak the psychedelic revolution caused or was engendering a change in consciousness not just for the people that took it. It engendered a culture within which more things came through, more patterns of networks of going back to original source material, of going back to the earth, of going back to the civil rights movement, the gay rights movement, in the 1970s. We had equality, we had all these human issues of equity and equality that needed to be addressed in the culture, that basically were addressed either during or after the peak of the psychedelic experience which swept through the West.

Now in the 1980s and later in the north, it started as a slow motion, almost like a snowball effect, but the archaic revival has been happening right on schedule, aligning with the cosmic season that is enveloping the earth.  

We have ayahuasca predominantly leading the shamanic revolution. The first wave of the shamanic revolution was happening in the jungles of Peru, as Westerners would go over. William Burroughs went over in 1955 and basically fled screaming from the jungle describing the “cosmic wet vagina of existence” that he perceived on ayahuasca, which is funny because a lot of other people refer to ayahuasca as madre or the mother.

It's that oceanic, ego-dissolving, reunion with Source type of experience, but I think Burroughs obviously had a lot of a lot of dark issues to deal with and to purge before he could get to that joy that is found through that reunification with Source.

Anyway, you know, Burroughs was one of the first early adopters or the first early chroniclers of the ayahuasca experience from 1955 onwards, but mainly through the 1980s and 1990s, first wavers went over to the jungles of Peru in Iquitos and Pullcalpa and cities like that and it was very much a 0.01 % of the population, but by the late 20th century, early 21st century, the first ayahuasca lodges existed. The first lodges design for Western tourists, spiritual tourists in the Iquitos opened up in around 1991. It was the Sachamama Ethnobotanical Garden with Don Francisco Montes Shuna.

Since then, there's been a deluge of interest in ayahuasca. It’s snowballed definitely since 2000 and even the last five years where now you know Western lodges dot the horizon. Every man and his dog and cousin says they're a shaman. Ayahuasca is booming. It's available on the internet. You know in certain countries the tourism market is rapidly starting to dilute the spirituality of the experience.

It's offered along jungle tours but there's also a very deep contingent of people going over to Peru and also the second or third wavers now who have come back from Peru and are establishing their own lines of shamanic practice with San Pedro, Huachuma, the grandfather spirit, and Ayahuasca, the Madre, the feminine spirit. I mean it's just booming. You know the entheogens and Ayahuasca predominantly, is the cutting edge of things at the moment.

So as this comes into Western culture it’s also transforming us, perhaps invisibly or perhaps under the surface as it realigns, as it heals, as it cleanses, just like the 1960s revolution did in ways that weren't perceivable until the 1970s or 1980s. So, what is this message that we get from entheogens?

11. The Divine Consciousness Distributes inside Creation

Now I believe it's not just to awaken divinity, but we also have experiences of contact with entities or have travelled to different dimensions or different states of being. We have healing, we have connection and this idea of connection is important because we can see that the divine within is just one facet of a distributed consciousness of a connection to a larger hive mind that permeates all of existence.

I'm sure many people listening to this may have had experiences of complete ego-dissolvement where they've basically become one with the unified field of everything. I mean, some of the ultimate merging experiences of the entheogenic sacrament is that you can fully dissolve the ego and the drop re-joins the ocean, you know, and what is the ocean, what is nature itself, what is the intelligence which drives this larger organism which we call Earth or Gaia?

Gaia is just one little atom in a larger tapestry of the universe as well. It makes me wonder, is it any coincidence that on the outer level of the All-in-One, down here in the planetary gravity well, global culture is now suddenly exploding with the power of networks from Facebook to Google, from Occupy Wall Street to mashups on YouTube?

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The whole idea is that our culture is now ready and integrated, this idea of connecting, whether it's with people or minds or movements or revolutions, we're all multi-tasking into this fluid network of sort of uber-humanity, and at the same time the entheogenic movement is weaving together networks on the astral zones of the spirit. So, for me, this whole definition of entheogen invoking the divine within is just one facet of a larger ability, and the true entheogenic principle is that of connectivity or interconnectivity to larger minds at work.

This comes back to the idea of the mycelium network of the larger dimensional intelligence that's phasing in like an iceberg with nine-tenths of its mass unseen but affecting us already. It seems like on planet Earth, the group mind is being born.

Now I'm going to flash back here to the 1960s and the last time that the whole idea of group mind was really clearly delineated as part of psychedelic culture.

12. Kesey and the Pranksters Blow Group Minds!

I believe that was with Ken Kesey and the Merry Pranksters. So, Ken Kesey, as we probably all know, was a famous writer and author in the early 1960s.He was actually involved in a CIA-funded hospital exploration with LSD, he was paid money to take LSD and other substances to explore their effects on his consciousness.

 And luckily, he groked it. He saw beyond the medical establishment, he saw beyond the lab coats and their 10-point questionnaires while he was tripping balls and he realized that these substances were basically the Promethean lightning from the gods that really had to get out there to the people.

He later got a job at this hospital as a cleaner, which is where a lot of the inspiration for his book One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest came from. He liberally helped himself to the LSD capsules in the doctor's cabinet. And he got these substances out to his friends in the literary community, in the alternative counter-cultural community on the west coast where he was staying.

And basically, they formed the first prototype group minds in the west that really replicate that indigenous tribal group mine that people would do when they tripped on entheogens in a group setting en masse.

There's some stories of the shamans of Peru when villagers trip when they do a healing for the village and they all see the same things. They all see the same purple, violet, viscous superfluid that comes out of people's mouths and they sing objects into existence or they all share a communal navigation through hyperspace where they're all consensually agreeing that they're all seeing the same thing.

 That idea of a whole village tripping together had really largely been lost in the west since the repression of the other and the repression of the psychedelic experience, probably in the Greek Mysteries of Eleusius, in the Greek experience or when underground in the mystery schools. But in the modern western experience, Ken Kesey and the Merry Pranksters were some of the first. There were some psychotherapy group gestalt experiences done in psychotherapy establishments in the west coast. But en masse, Ken Kesey and what was to very soon become his group of the Merry Pranksters started to trip together and experiment together into group minds.

Martin A. Lee in the book "Acid Dreams" goes on to quote the Merry Pranksters and the idea of Ken Kesey's experiments by saying: "the idea was really to go further, to explore the unknown, to feel no limit as to what might be discovered and expressed on acid. It was in this sense that a mission was taking shape amongst the pranksters. It had nothing to do with the salvation of the world. It was more a feeling, a sinking together that created an atmosphere of creeping religiosity. As a group they searched for a unified consciousness that would outstrip once and for all the pseudo-reality they'd left behind.”

It was of course what they call the group mind. Now it's a very delicate thing, the group mind. The Pranksters dabbled with it in the 1960s. The hippies experimented on mass with it in their Be-Ins, in their love-ins, in the Summer of Love, in their mass gatherings where they would gather together tens of thousands of people on acid, but it's always hard to get that circuit of energy that cohesion together the larger the group is.

13. Dead Heads Gestalt Together

Part of the reason that the Pranksters succeeded in going as deep as they did with the group mind experiments in what was to later be called the Acid Tests was another faction, another splinter group within the Pranksters called the Grateful Dead. Now the Grateful Dead started out as the house band of the Merry Pranksters when they would hold these these proto-acid parties back when they were called the Warlocks. And this is a quote from Bear Owsley again that was on his website

He said that “the music of the Grateful Dead is an important assistant to the revival of tribality because it has to do with the way things are. It's not somebody's idea about the way things might be or the way things could or should be. It's what is. It's real music about real things. The whole thing is about a social movement. It's tribalism which is the only social structure that is truly human.”

Now the Grateful Dead were all about this group mind. They would take acid, they would riff, they would play their music up on stage for hours at end, and sometimes they'd get it together and sometimes they wouldn't.

But they would free form, they would riff, they would bounce off each other and they would be so attuned to the sensitivities of each other that they formed a circuit, which is the group mind. And that was basically the core of the acid test and the Prankster's experience.

Now the group mind is the key that Owsley nurtured first on acid and then the Dead music. And the group mind was then engendered to the other participants in the dance and the trance into this gestalt- consciousness.

“Now the presence of every kind of person, the presence of every kind of level of engagement and disengagement is more important. It's like a reaction vessel that has all the pieces of whatever can be made and it makes something, but it doesn't use all the pieces all the time.” That's Bear Owsley again.

There was a lot of experimentation in the 60s with this idea of gestalt consciousness, this idea that together we can form a circuit of energy and we can influence each other and we can hear and feel each other on a higher level of being.

This whole idea which is reflected in tribalism and what McKenna is promulgating is the tribal or the Archaic Revival. This whole idea that even Marshall McLuhan would say that the future has to be… this whole idea of the global village, or what is the global village in an age of distributed networks and Facebook and social networks? It's this whole idea of interconnectivity which is part and parcel of what we're saying before about being engendered by the creativity tools of LSD and the other substances.

A gestalt group mind–the interesting thing that Bear was saying is that the higher consciousness which actually works through the group mind uses all the pieces that are in the circuit at the time, but it doesn't necessarily use all of them all of the time and it doesn't need all of them all of the time.

We’ve probably all felt instances in a party at a moment when it just gels when that magic moment happens and everything comes together and this flow of energy, of sort of this, you know, invisible feeling comes over of oneness, togetherness, flow, movement, perfection… and for a little bit of time, maybe you've tried it, you can not just grok it, but you can push it. You can manipulate it or move it around.

It's like the ability of a flock of geese to fly together in formation and to lead where they need to go. None of the geese are actually leading but somehow collectively they're all responsible. It's like a torrent. It's like they've all got a little fragment of information that when they're together adds up to the whole.

14. It's in Us to be Superheroes!

What seems to be happening on planet Earth at the moment is some type of planetary or intergalactic torrent is downloading into us, into our group mind and our ability to hold that information and to reform and unify that information into the new paradigm that is being birthed on planet Earth.

To jump back to the Electric Kool -Aid Acid Test and what Ken Kesey said about group minds and the Acid Test: cosmic control is something that we're searching for and have been for a long time. Each time it builds it's bigger and it's stronger and then you find out about Cosmo and you discover that he's running the show. The Unspoken Thing. All the Pranksters were conscious of it but none of them put it into words as I say. They made a point of not putting it into words. That in itself is one of the unspoken rules. “If you label it this then it can't be that” and that's Tom Wolf talking in the Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test.

Kesey realized the incredible sensitivity of the group mind meant that basically the second law of thermodynamics was very potent with it, that any energy put on it would have an equal and an inverse effect. So, the way to hold the circuit of the group mind was to not try to do it but to create that canvas in the Acid Test that allowed the group to come together with a few choice facilitators who were actively not trying to facilitate that group mind.

Now, Kesey had a lot of deep insights on acid, and one of them which I think is worth quoting here is this whole idea of waves, this whole idea of us becoming something greater than ourselves and having an opportunity to do that, basically, not just every generation, but every iteration of this group mind energy coming through, of this planetary intelligence that he called Cosmo, coming through us.

He's quoting from the Electric-Kool Aid Acid Test by Tom Wolf: “Ken Kesey said, "One night in Mexico, in Manzanillo, I took some acid and I threw the I Ching. And the I Ching, the great thing about the I Ching is it never sends you valentines. It slaps you in the face when you need it. And it said we had reached the end of something. We weren't going anywhere any longer. It was time for a new direction.

Learn more about Amazonian hallucinogenic shamanism

And I went outside and there was an electrical storm and there was lightning everywhere. And I pointed to the sky and lightning flashed and all of a sudden I had a second skin, like electricity, like a suit of electricity. And I knew it was in us to be superheroes and that we could become superheroes or nothing." 

Now, Kesey had a bit of an infatuation with the God forms of the Marvel comics and the DC comics for the time because, you know, they represented the heroes in the trash culture. They were the God forms. They were the Captain Marvels saying Shazam and a bolt of lightning coming from beyond and transforming through basically tetragramatron, the man into the God.

It was the whole hallucinogenic, acid entheogenic experience of the Gods. So, forgive him in a way for saying that, but it's like, it's something which is in us to be. Basically, Kesey was saying that the Gods are within us, which is basically what the entheogenic experience is telling us as well.

Now, the Pranksters as they experimented with group mind, often found that they would experience powers quite attributable to superpowers like these superheroes. When they were heavily tripling on acid for days, weeks, even years on and off at a time, and getting into this group mind, they would find that they would finish each other's sentences, that there would be continual synchronicities, that they could work under acid under normal conditions.

They basically got these mind powers like Indian saddhus, almost like Jedi-mind tricks. They could steer the mind, they could appear invisible to people looking for them. They could just do things with their mind that were not possible without the acid.

Now the Indian saddhus have documented these abilities quite well. They call them siddhis. They call them the distractions or the lesser powers in the Tibetan mythology. There's quite an awareness in different cultures of the ability of the mind to have powers beyond the normal ken of man. And the Pranksters stumbled across this old magic, this ability to get into these frames of reference where they could do more with their mind than individually.

Curanderos in Peru often say that they will, you know, I've sat with them and maybe many people have, but they have this ability they say to bilocate, to be in two places at the same time, maybe projecting in astral form, telepathy or sensory distortion, they can see at a distance, they seem to be able to warp the laws of physics with their imagination or their power of will, with their magical consciousness as it comes to the fore.

And, you know, this is part of the ayahuasca experience that is actually quite intriguing and is almost the dark side of the force for Westerners as we search for the visions on the ayahuasca experience and search for the powers that the visions bring. But you must be warned that as the Pranksters found out as well, these are the lesser powers, these are the things which the individual egos can be empowered by, but they're not the be all and end all of the larger purpose of coming together, which is the group mind and holding a circuit for the planetary energy coming through.

So, what did Ken Kesey and the Merry Pranksters do then once they realized that LSD opened up these facets of the mind and powers that we had within us?

15. The Archaic Revival

Well with the Pranksters, Ken Kesey and the Electric Kool-Aid that Bear Owsley helped provide, turned on hundreds of people in sessions called the “Acid Tests”, which evolved out of their private parties they had into giant carnivals with videotapes, flashing strobes, improvised rock and roll, and the core of that was the Grateful Dead, of course, who went on to their own long-term career as a psychedelic rock band and lots of bizarre costumes and dancing.

Here's a quote from "Acid Dreams" again about the Acid Tests: "The acid tests were the epoch of the psychedelic style and practically everything that has gone into it. I don't mean merely the Pranksters did it first, but rather that it all came straight out of the Acid Tests in a direct line leading to the Trips Festival of January 1966. That brought the whole thing full out into the open, mixed media entertainment, this came straight out of the Acid Test combination of light and movie projections, strobes, tapes, rock and roll, black light, acid rock, the sound of the Beatles' Sgt. Pepper’s album, and the high vibrato electronic sounds of the Jefferson Airplane, the Mothers of Invention, and many other groups, the Mothers of It All, with the Grateful Dead, at the Acid Tests."

Now, the Acid Tests basically reclaimed part of what McKenna was to call the “archaic revival”. They brought back this idea of tribality, of the tribe coming together, dancing and trancing, and being in an altered state, and having this, you know, this cohesion of basically the group mind. So, what I'm trying to suggest here is that something that's often overlooked in psychedelic history: we look at the medical effects, we look at the anthropological effects, but we forget there's deeper psychic effects that happen to the culture and of templates that came through at this time, and I think one of the most important ones has been this idea of the group mind.  

It's almost like a psychic intranet to use a computer term again, an ability for more than one system, one hard drive if you will, to plug into a group unit of other hard drives and to be stronger. We know from computing now through the biomimicry of what we can learn from computing we can apply in a rough form to consciousness itself. And we know that you can have super-computing when you web together or network together large batches of hard drives or single computers. Collectively the computing power that the super crunching ability to do things with computers is a lot more, it's enhanced when it is a group endeavour.

So of course, the outward artifacts, the outward cultural artifacts of the Acid Tests contain this idea of tribality, but what came from that, from the Acid Tests and psychedelic music and culture was also handed down. The flame wasn't lost when you know acid was declared illegal and when the hippie culture peaked.

Basically the force–I feel that the planetary intelligence, the Gaian mind, the “Cosmo” [as Kesey called it]… Whatever you want to call it that produced in the culture at that time a chemical secreted virtually from nature, in concert with the other entheogens and psychedelics that were percolating in the culture at the time. And it came together not just in the artifacts of the mind but also in the culture and what happened to it. It came down in in a way that continued so it peaked in that moment and it did what it had to do it set the pieces of the puzzle and planetary culture into a different course.

Now there's an idea that was actually promulgated yet again by Bear Owsley that has been taken up by quite a few other people and it's become part of the psychedelic folklore. It's this idea that basically the planet or some entire intelligence really needed to rebalance what was happening in the karmic web with the Manhattan Project and the development of the atomic bomb.

16. The Mushroom at the End of History

The famous phrase is: “which mushroom shall dominate the end of history?” Is it going to be the mushroom cloud at the end of history of the atomic test or is it going to be the mushroom mycelium network of distributed enhanced consciousness that we're seeing?

I think coming through now with social networks and the internet, we’re seeing hive minds developing in culture you know and so basically the idea was it was secreted at the time and inserted into the cultural workplace to offset this idea of atomic fission. You know there had to be some balancing of the culture and of the species of the humans that were out of control.

It does float on certain levels as a romantic resonance but what we can see that as opposed to this peak of culture and the social movements are engendered around this time global trance culture is now 40 years past the first Acid Test when this idea that the tribe can come together with rock and roll or electronic music or an electronic stimulation through lights and sound and dance and trance.

This modality percolated for a while; it found a little safe bastion in there in the gene pool and it infected again it had a second wave like Kesey said, everything comes in waves, so when Goa Trance music started to disseminate again in the late 1970s early 1980s it spread across the planet quite rapidly, it took a while but you know from that first wave of Goa Trance we had all electronic music: we had techno we had trance we had psychedelic trance – there's been plethora of different sort of music genres that have developed from it, but we had this idea of dancing and trancing to altered states of mind.

Where acid opened the mind in the 1960s a generation later in the 1980s on the coat tails of the Goa Trance and the Acid revival, the drug ecstasy came in… now again, this is a lab chemical, it is artificial, but in the cultural sort of melting pot of the time, ecstasy really worked to open the heart, whether the heart chakra or the heart or just the emotional body of humans.

I see a wave happening again, a pattern here in culture where acid opened the mind in the '60s, ecstasy opened the heart in the '80s, and in the 00’s noughts we've seen this amazing resurgence to the same scale as the ecstasy and acid revolutions, but actually almost underground. 

It's with ayahuasca and the other power plants, the entheogens, which have come to full dominance. They've fully been reported in every major mainstream paper and periodical in the world, from New York Times to LA Times, to The Guardian, to all the major media reported on them, but it hasn't been this concentrated peak of a drug problem. It's been embedded within a spiritual indigenous culture of people going over to Peru and learning about ayahuasca and then receding it back into their local communities.

It's almost as if we had to go through those first waves of the acid and ecstasy to open up certain blockages in individuals and in the collective to then be ready to re -accept the vegetal mind, what McKenna calls the “vegetal mind",this idea about the goddess, the green goddess, and the Archaic Revival coming full circle and finding its place in a sustainable groove with the planet. So, it seems that that has happened now.

You know, there's been a full decade or so of the ayahuasca boom and it hasn't been this concentrated “let's march on the Pentagon and levitate it with the hippies on acid” vibe, but it's been a real learning curve for a generation of people who are committed to their own healing, to planetary healing, and to improving themselves and their spiritual paths. And as such, you know, it hasn't been illegal. That's been one very huge difference. It's that because it's been overseas in South America on mass, it's been somewhere where it's been culturally acceptable and it's actually been protected by the laws of the time and it's been encouraged because of the tourism.

With all the vested interests and all the problems it brings, it's still been encased in a culture which has protected it as it disseminated.

The planet chose, I think a more appropriate sort of vehicle with ayahuasca or yet again as the exo-pheromone, it's almost like you get the politicians you deserve is the odd saying where you also get the entheogens you deserve at the time you deserve them.

So, with that very brief overview of the ayahuasca movement of the 00’s and into this decade (2010’s), I would like to think that we're coming full circle we're coming to some sense of closure of one phase and beginning of another phase. Now coincidentally or not, this all happens at a very potent time in the Western calendar as we know we're coming up very imminently to the Western Gregorian year 2012– which is not just a day in time or a year in time but it's basically like a season in time, a season in consciousness itself.

I sort of use very short shorthand terms, I'd remind people not to get hooked on the year or the day but to look at the cycles as Kesey said again, look at the waves of entheogenic activity and the cultural manipulation or gestational revolution they have caused that has all brought us to this moment.

So in shorthand again, you know, because 2012 has basically become a very branded co -opted commodified meme, just like entheogens are starting to become in mainstream culture. But the Mayans themselves originated this idea of a great cycle of time ending and a new cycle beginning.

The observations of the galaxy by the Mayans was not a dry scientific affair; they had a spiritual intimacy in their science which was reflected in the language they used to describe the stars: for example, they called the galactic center and the sun there, which they believed was at the center of the galaxy of our Milky Way, “Hunab Ku”, which translates to the womb of the great mother.

Now interestingly enough, in 2002, NASA confirmed that at the centre of our galaxy is actually a super massive black hole, which sucks in matter and spews out massive jets of charged particles into space.

Now, this is an interesting thing. Yet again, we have an indigenous culture that used entheogens widely, reported that they went basically on astral travels into the galaxy and explored all the dimensions up there and races and contact, and they knew what was up there. And what NASA is saying is that really, it sort of matches their idea of this womb, which is a black hole, which interestingly enough, black holes don't just suck in everything, including light and all gravity and all matter. They spew out these galaxy-wide emissions of supercharged particles, which like when a bushfire goes through in a forest and germinates fresh seeds,

It births stars into being. This has been confirmed by NASA, and this is the cutting -edge science of understanding how stars are born and how the evolution of stellar systems happen. The latest astrophysics research is telling us, and this is quite cutting-edge and hasn't trickled down to a lot of the mainstream other bastions of science that have their own little fiefdoms. But solar flare activity is on the rise.

We're in a solar maximum, solar cycle 24, peaking in around 2012 [as of this edit, April 2024, we’re in solar cycle 25]. Fed by the solar winds, behind the sun itself, we have a massive amounts of energy coming in from galactic center, because we are now aligned directly upwards of the galactic centre, and this energy is coming in. It's not just happening in this year of 2012 and on the day of December 21st when the Mayan calendar ends and the new cycle of the calendar begins.

It's happening all the time as we go through these large astronomical sectors of space. What's basically happening is as the Earth revolves around the sun, the sun revolves around the galaxy and we're coming to a 26,000 year orbit completion. In this orbit, there's orbits within orbits and so we're basically aligning to a denser region of space where we are being bombarded by massive charged particles from many, many different sources. We're going through an incredibly dense region of space and this happens in different phases of the orbit that the indigenous tribes of many cultures have left us myth maps of.

The whole idea of cyclic time is basically saying that when we go through these stages, the earth is bombarded by energy and that energy affects the earth as an organism just as it affects the sun. They all seem to be alive in a cosmic circuit, basically as large as the universe. If we believe in the James Lovelock theory of Gaia which was coined in the 1970s, that the earth is a living organism, then we are able to extrapolate that to say well it's probably not just the earth but indeed many planets if not all planets and the suns and the whole universe is basically alive, it's an organism.

17. The You-niverse is Alive

There's a much bandied about fact that there's probably as many stars in the universe as there are neurons in a human brain. There's a whole ‘as above, so below,’ alchemical idea. Anyway, this is all to say, it's a very short hand but we're coming up to a very potent region of space at a very appropriated time in our calendar.

The Mayans left us this myth map of this grand cycle coming to an end. Now what I said earlier about the entheogens is you get the entheogens you deserve at the time you deserve them.

So, imagine if the planet has been secreting these substances as needed and changing the substances it secretes when needed. If you have a culture which is in homeostasis with the earth and in concert in sustainability, well they're probably already on something that they're connecting with the earth from and they won't need something else.

But if it doesn't work, well the planet's going to have to keep pumping out something on a higher levels which is probably why acid ended up in a lab because it couldn't get through the normal earth channels of the ground and the entheogens and the tribe because those channels had been disrupted by Western culture which was out of sync.

But the planet in the last 50, 60 years has been producing these substances probably no more than normal although there is a case to be said for magic mushrooms disseminating extremely quickly in the last 50 or 60 years all across the planet through western culture. But what we see with the uptake is why certain chemicals and certain substances more popular than others.

Mescaline's been around for almost a century, ecstasy's been around for almost a century as well, LSD was around for a long time before it became popular, ayahuasca has been around for tens of thousands of years, but it was very hard to find and it was protected, but these things are all coming out of the closet, they're all coming out at the same time as everything dovetails together, it's like everything's interconnected in this web, this networked world, this Gaian network and we must remember that the vegetal internet, the interconnected web of life is the original internet, it's the one that all the other systems are based on.

The ayahuasca and the entheogenic revolution or the movement of the last 20 or 30 years seems to have been grooming us, it's been healing us, it's been getting loose all our negativity and purging us of our crude crud of consciousness and of bodily weight that we've had and it's clearing us. It's clearing the way for a return to true health, optimal health.

Now one of the things that is slightly controversial in mainstream circles but is actually documented fact is that the fluoride in the water supplies throughout most of the western world interferes with the pineal gland. The pineal gland is a repository, it's been for over a thousand years a lot of philosophers have said that they think that it's the source of some source of consciousness itself.

 Now Dr. Rick Strassman in his famous studies in the 1990s which culminated in the book DMT: The Spirit Molecule has hypothesized and it's not proven but it is a very solid hypothesis, that DMT is partially produced in the pineal gland. We know that it's in our blood, it's in our gut, it's in our brain, there's DMT all through the human organism and indeed through majority of the plants and all the animal species on earth.

It seems that almost every sentient creature that is sentient or dreams or is connected to that realm has DMT in it including the plants. It seems like in the last 30 years or so this anthropogenic revolution we are as humans a certain critical mass of us at least are being cleansed and prepared to go back to our original state of being which was flush clean and able to be in concert with the earth and to be sensitive to the signals the earth gives off to be in reciprocal relationship with it.

In the cities and in the stress and in the fluoride in the water supply it calcifies and this is documented, it calcifies the pineal gland, there are things you can do to flush that calcification clean again and get rid of that calcification of the pineal but it's believed at least in spiritual circles that the pineal gland is our third eye and is our ability to connect to the higher realms of being.

It seems to me that as ayahuasca and the entheogenic movement has been cleansing our spirits as well as our bodies we are being groomed for these hyperspatial connections for the divine within, for this entheogenic ability yet again in the internet interconnected network.

The thing about the timing of it is this now there's been a New Scientist article that came out a few years ago that said the pineal gland is directly affected by sunlight and the magnetic fields tripped by the light and although the pineal is still largely unknown, we do know that it helps regulate the metabolism of the body.

Now endogenous dimethyltryptamine, as I said before, DMT is a powerful psychoactive chemical found in our brains. Rick Strassman said that he thought it helped regulate higher consciousness functions such as dreaming and our connection to higher realms of birth death or near -death experiences.

The interesting thing is as we come up to galactic center as we come up to 2012 as we come through a whole generation of cleansing and preparing to receive the light which is often what ayahuasca does when once you've cleansed the body and the lower chakras you can then journey and go astral traveling and into the into the cosmos itself.

18. The Galactic Current Sheet Bombarding us post-2012

As we come up to this signpost this galactic signpost of 2012 it's not about the date it's about what we're aligning to an energy coming in. Now it has been documented that there’s more energy coming in at the moment –there's these things called magnetars which are a hundred thousand times more powerful than the Sun. Every two seconds they release that amount of energy onto the earth we're being bombarded, it's like the circuit of the planet earth itself and all the life forms which hold that circuit are being bombarded by cosmic radiation and cosmic energy which is basically activating our DNA.

And there's been studies done where they've gone through the fossil record and they found the correlations between the solar cycles and these larger cosmic orbits where energy comes in in large fluctuations of energy and cause mutations in the gene pool. The current sort of theory is that it's not just sunlight coming in, it's not just energy per se that does nothing. As we said right at the start, nature makes no mistakes. Nature is a lean, elegant, organic, loving entity that facilitates the best and most appropriate use that maximizes the yields.

As we come to this 26 ,000 year orbit, we come to this time when energy is streaming in, when we've gone through a generation of cleansing and ability to receive the light, to activate our DNA. 

Now it works on many levels and this could go on a lot denser and a lot deeper with a lot more footnotes and a lot more proven facts, I'd encourage you all to research this yourself.

It seems to me that the plants have been encouraging a whole generation to get used to the idea of hyperspace, to dip their little toes in, to experiment and come back to the flesh body in preparation for some large cosmic event which is happening right on cycle in our cosmic evolution to train us for hyperspace.

This comes down to, well the Mayan calendar’s December 21st 2012 which was a time when the alignments reach a peak experience basically and energy is coming in at that winter solstice in the northern hemisphere and summer solstice in the southern hemisphere. In Peru in the Andean cosmology they believe that at certain times like December 21st and also during the July 25/26 different energies come in at different times.

They would carve notches into the rocks to the high mountains where the light would be at its highest where you'd receive the maximum solar energy and a lot of the Andean cosmology and the whole idea about the Inca which translates originally to the Sun King is this idea of activating our light fields, activating our light bodies, maximizing the energy coming in to activate our light bodies.

But regardless, we will have a critical mass of humanity and probably we could say of counter-cultural humanity, which has been building in these Ken Kesey waves every generation, you know, it gets bigger and stronger every wave. 

So, the Acid Test in the 1960s started out with say a dozen people and then it got to a couple of hundred people and a couple of thousand people and it peaked in the 1960s revolution where the last statistics I read said that by 1971 or so, around six million Americans had done LSD. Now, you know, who knows what the real statistic is because who fills out those questionnaires and who's asking the questions?

But what we can say is a critical mass of humanity was tweaked by acid and turned on and the cultural vector changed in the 1980s with ecstasy and that cultural vector changed again in the 00’s with ayahuasca and the other plant entheogens coming to fruition in our culture So we've gone through three waves of this and it's all dovetailing perfectly towards 2012 and beyond.

What a coincidence! This counter cultural critical mass will be happening all across the planet on December 21st 2012. There will be millions, if not tens of millions, if not hundreds of millions of people celebrating. They won't be celebrating Christmas four days later, they'll be celebrating the end of the Mayan calendar and the beginning of the next cycle of the next 26,000 year cycle.

And as they do that, whether they believe in it or not, the astronomical energies, the stellar energies will be coming in just as the Mayans knew they would. I believe that we have a target window of opportunity to harness the evolutionary nature of the party trance culture that is the most direct line of descent from the Acid Tests and from that first wave of entheogenic evolution.

19. Group Mind and Species Activation

We've been groomed by the plants, by the trance, by the dance. With this ability, we will be coming together in nodal points across the planet and forming basically an energetic circuit all across the planet at all the locations.

All those who have been touched by the plants or by the chemicals and have been awakened and have some idea of energy itself and of the possibilities of energy and of group mind and of what we can do as a culture, have a responsibility. Now, as we probably know, not everyone in party culture is into the shamanic ideas. In the last decade or so, the shamanic meme and the shamanic thing has basically become groovy. It's become cool. It's become something that rubs off on a lot of party culture and that's fine because Madre knows what she's doing. The ayahuasca gets to the people, it does the healing. While it's been commodified by the West, it's also working on the spirit of the West and it's changing it.

If there's 10% of the party tribe who are actually the entheogenic shamanic tribe then who have been awakened and are aware of energies, we have an amazing opportunity to anchor and ground and celebrate and not do anything more but harness the ambient energy of these parties. As we all know at all these festivals and doofs and raves and whatever you call them, an enormous amount of energy, physical, kinetic and psychic is released.

What I call upon is all the people who have a clue, all the people who have been touched by the plants, all the seeds that have blossomed over the last 60 or more years of these successive ways of entheogenic culture, to harness the energy at these events.

I believe that we're not shamans, but we are shamanic facilitation units, SFUs, where people who have been touched by the plants and have a bit of understanding about what the potentials are, and the potentials are this whole idea of group mind.

And again, what is group mind? We've talked about it in the in the Pranksters and the Acid Tests example. We've touched on it very briefly in the Goa Trance and in the entheogenic cultures when we come together. But it's this ability and the key is trying too hard for it won't make it happen. We're all there anyway. We're all there in this ambient collection of our energies, of our potentials, at this critical juncture in history.

Now, the last little tweak I'll give to it is this. Armenian mystic George Gurdjieff expounded his theory of “reciprocal maintenance”. Now, I call this “Galactic Darwinism”. It's the idea that the planet, the consciousness of the planet is alive and needs to be fed. And it takes from the humans and from the animals and from all the organisms, it gives and it takes. It makes sense. It's reciprocal maintenance. It's homeostasis. It's what the planet does to keep things in balance.

If a species gets out of control, it will smite them down, not with great vengeance, but just out of necessity. Through our labors, through our consciousness, through our dance, you can do this. You can offer your suffering. You can offer your prayer. There's a God within. You can pray. You can ask. You can communicate. You can dream it in. It's a reciprocal universe.

It listens. listens, it does the best it can, you know, if it's what you need. But there's this reciprocal maintenance where the earth will take what it needs if it's not honored, if it's not a sacrifice, which is the whole indigenous idea of sacrifice and of paying the earth back. So one way to offer sacrifice is through dance, through our conscious labors, through our trancing, dancing on the earth.

Discover the inner landscape
of the visionary state

If all this energy across the planet is going to be ambiently present anyway, all it needs is a focal point, like in a prayer, to offer it back. And offer it back not just to Mother Earth, because Mother Earth feeds the moon and the moon feeds the sun, and the sun feeds galactic sun, which we know is Hunab Ku, the womb of the great Mother, the great birth of our galaxy of the planets and the stars.

I feel at this very elemental and very strategic time in human history, the best thing we can do is to be present in the moment with the training the entheogens have given us, with the ability to recognize the headspace it brings us, and to collectively harness and offer up all this energy back to Hunab Ku, back to the Great Mother. Feed her and then she will feed back.

Because in the reciprocal maintenance on a galactic scale, something is happening. We're being bombarded with so much stellar energy that if we don't hold the energy, the circuit that we are on the earth may fry. We have millions of people across the earth with DMT and their pineal glands, which may be calcified, right? They may be stressed due to their work culture.

We all know that there's stress on planet earth, Western culture at least, is out of balance. It's unsustainable. The economy is collapsing. The environment is, if not collapsing, at least trying to fight back against the humans. Everything we know is about to change.

We can see that in our culture. We can see it in the newspapers. We can see it in the streets. We can see it in this deep-seated need for things to be true, for things to be fair, for things to nurture, for the love to come through, to have a culture which we are proud of, not the one we're enslaved by. So regardless of all the hippie wish-fulfilling of the last few decades or indeed of the last 6,000 years of his-story, what I'm saying is the world is as you dream it and this target window of opportunity only comes once every 26 ,000 years and we seem to have been nurtured to this point where everything is going according to plan, plant, planet.

So, entheogenic shamanic culture, I beseech you, I beseech you, I ask of you and I humbly suggest to you, use this opportunity wisely.

20. Planetary Icaro

Here's another last idea. The organic, intelligent web of life connects the stars and the energy of us all in an infinite engine of creation. This is the not -so -secret truth at the heart of the Maya. All of us are staring down the celestial food chain, being fed and fed upon in one macro -cosmic biomass bigger than human comprehension that creates a cosmic balance and it's time we give back.

 In the jungles of Peru, when the curanderos do their healing, they often use their icaros. Now an icaro is a vibrational message, it's a song. It's not just a song though, it's a magical song. It's basically the vibrational code. A plant may sing its vibrational essence, it may sing its molecular makeup to the curandero so he can sing that and transfer that energy to heal the patient.

I have this idea of a planetary icaro, that when when the light comes in, when the pineal activates, when the human circuit is activated with all of us, all there is to do to give back to the great mother, to Hunab Ku: is to sing. And it's not even us singing, it's the higher intelligence, it's the planet singing through us. It's us and the plants and the planet all singing a planetary icaro, our vibrational code of us.

Back to Hunab Ku as we step up, as we evolve and as we take the next step.

Time is short and the way is hard, but the call of the other is ringing in our genes.

In plants we trust.

Are you ready to take the next step?

Key takeaways

  • Albert Hofmann, revered for his accidental discovery of LSD, highlights his meticulous nature as a chemist, his mystical predisposition, and the historical context of LSD's origins linked to ergot derivatives and ancient rituals.
  • LSD and similar psychedelic substances are closely related to natural compounds found in nature, challenging the perception of them as entirely synthetic and highlighting their role within a broader natural and cultural context.
  • In the 1950s, LSD and other entheogens were explored by western cultures as potent substances with profound psychological and spiritual implications, representing a countercultural thread in a society largely disconnected from the traditional entheogenic knowledge of indigenous peoples.
  • In the mid-1950s, Gordon Wasson, a New York banker and mushroom enthusiast, rediscovered the use of psilocybin mushrooms in a remote Oaxacan village, marking a significant moment in the reintroduction of psychedelic mushrooms to Western culture.
  • Gordon Wasson's experience with magic mushrooms, facilitated by curandera Maria Sabina, introduced and popularized the use of psychedelics in Western culture during the 1950s, marking a significant shift in the exploration of consciousness and psychotherapy.
  • Timothy Leary's initial experiences with magic mushrooms in 1960 inspired a significant shift in Western interest towards exploring consciousness and the psychological effects of psychedelics, leading to influential research and experimentation, amidst a backdrop of cultural and political tension during the Cold War era.
  • The use of LSD and other psychedelic substances among key figures in the development of the personal computer and internet sectors significantly influenced their creativity, problem-solving abilities, and innovations, linking psychedelic experiences to technological advancements.
  • "Bear" Owsley Stanley, speaking in 2009, challenged the notion that entheogens invoke divinity within users, instead arguing that substances like acid amplify existing personality traits, and further posited that the planet produces psychoactive plants as part of a symbiotic relationship with humans, contributing to evolutionary processes.
  • Terence McKenna and other psychedelic theorists believe that entheogens, such as psychedelics, have played and continue to play a crucial role in human evolution by enhancing consciousness, language, and arts, suggesting a symbiotic relationship with plants that propels humans toward a deeper connection with the Earth's evolutionary process.
  • Cultural and consciousness shifts initiated by the psychedelic revolution of the 1960s have evolved into a contemporary shamanic and entheogenic movement, deeply impacting Western culture through practices like ayahuasca use, signalling a continuing evolution of human consciousness and cultural practices.
  • The essence of entheogenic experiences extends beyond awakening divinity to include profound connections and interactions with other entities, dimensions, and a universal consciousness, suggesting a burgeoning global culture of interconnectedness mirrored in both the digital and spiritual realms.
  • Ken Kesey and the Merry Pranksters explored the group mind concept through LSD experiments, aiming to transcend traditional consciousness and societal norms, a journey inspired by Kesey's experiences and later influencing broader counter-cultural movements.
  • The Grateful Dead and the Merry Pranksters' exploration of group mind and gestalt consciousness through music and LSD was central to the cultural and social movement of the 1960s, aiming to revive tribalism and interconnectedness.
  • Ken Kesey and the Merry Pranksters discovered through LSD-induced experiences that human consciousness can tap into a collective, superhuman potential, transcending individual limitations and enabling a unified, powerful group mind capable of extraordinary abilities.
  • The Acid Tests, orchestrated by Ken Kesey and the Merry Pranksters with significant contributions from the Grateful Dead, played a pivotal role in shaping the psychedelic culture of the 1960s, emphasizing collective consciousness and cultural evolution through communal experiences, music, and psychedelic substances.
  • We need to think about how humanity might influence its future through either the destructive potential of nuclear weapons or the transformative power of collective consciousness and spirituality, underscored by cultural shifts towards entheogenic experiences.
  • As humanity approaches a significant cosmic alignment, there is a collective shift towards a heightened state of consciousness, facilitated by natural psychoactive substances and a deeper connection with the Earth, amid challenges posed by modern lifestyles and environmental factors.
  • The alignment of cosmic energies in 2012, amplified by celestial events and historical patterns of entheogenic substance use, is seen as a pivotal moment for human evolution and consciousness expansion, aligning with ancient predictions and modern studies on cosmic energy's effect on DNA.
  • Individuals influenced by entheogens and shamanic practices need to utilize their collective energy and consciousness at global gatherings to promote a reciprocal, nurturing relationship with the planet and the universe.
  • The interconnectedness of all life and the cosmic balance is maintained through a universal energy exchange, humanity's evolution and healing involve aligning with this natural vibrational energy.