I was saying yesterday that psychedelic experiences tend to have two aspects. As a matter of fact, you can classify their effects in many different ways.
And people who say there are three things to be remembered or for things to be remembered about so and so are really making this in order to put a point across. You sort of classifications that are always 530 things to be remembered about anything. So don’t take this too seriously. But I’m doing it to make a point.
And these two aspects are on the one hand, the alteration of sense perception and on the other hand, intuitive insight.
And if we could say that the intuitive insight is the aspect of psychedelic experience that corresponds most closely to the natural mystical experience, which does not necessarily involve the types of sensory alteration or alteration of perception so often involved with the chemicals. Nevertheless, it’s hard to draw a very straight line between these two aspects because every so often the sensory alterations suggest some kind of insight. I, first of all, want to go into the nature of some of these alterations, typical alterations, and discuss them.
You are aware, I suppose, that these chemicals are often classified as hallucinogens. That is to say, chemicals which generate hallucinations. And this has seemed to me a very bad word indeed, because, of course, hallucination always carries with it some kind of condemnation. It’s a pejorative word. And I have rarely come across an instance of where the use of LSD or mescaline or psilocybin has created a genuine hallucination for a hallucination. Is the appearance of something to a particular individual unseen by others, which he believes to be part of the real world. In other words, if you saw a ghost, it might be claimed that this was a hallucination. If you took the ghost is really out there.
But things like that don’t tend to happen.
What might be classed as hallucinations are of two kinds. Vision is seen with the eyes closed. But of course, you know that these are visions. You know that you are under the influence of a brain altering chemical and therefore unusual things are likely to happen, which you are not going to mistake for events in the external world. And therefore, when you close your eyes and behold, the most amazing patterns are constructed out of jewels, moving with splendid order in the dark or see infinite complexities of ferns where the stems sprout fronds and the front sprout fronds and the front let sprout from lands.
And forever and forever and forever, or marvelous arrangements of crystal arabesque translucent colored balls moving in space in many dimensions. Enormous temples, vast architectural creations with every kind of wall and tower and cauliflower going on forever and ever through gigantic spaces, getting involved in thistles with prickles upon prickles forever and ever and ever. Visions of Persian palaces, of courtyards, of outbursts, of dancing, girls and angels and knights in armor. All sorts of fantastic things will appear before closed eyes. But you know all the time that these are visions. And of course, they create the most extraordinary questions. What are they?
Because although they are visionary, although they aren’t there in the external world, they very much are in the internal world and they must have some kind of neurological basis. What are we looking at when we see those things? This is a question which nobody knows how to answer for in some way. There must be a physiological basis for this kind of patterning. Is it that we are getting a glimpse of patterning processes within the brain, processes which organize our ordinary thinking about things?
After all, you know that when you use the telephone and you dial somebody, there is a machinery which handles it all.
But if you go and look at that machinery to find it has an extraordinarily interesting design. The patterns of electronic equipment are sometimes very beautiful, but you are not aware of those patterns. When you make a telephone call, you are aware of voices and that’s it.
And bells ringing.
So it may be in the same way that within our minds, our brains that are perfectly marvelous pattern organizations, which we become aware of only under special circumstances. In other words, what one tends to do with under the influence of a psychedelic chemical is to become aware of being aware. That is to say, you turn your senses back on themselves and one is only inclined to do this when there is an alteration in the normal form of perception. That is to say, in seeing you do not notice your eyes, in hearing you do not notice your ears, especially if they’re healthy. But if some disease should attack the eye or the ear or some temporary inconvenience and you see spots in front of your eyes, you know that those spots are within the structure of the eye. And if there is singing in your ear, you know that that singing sound is within the structure of the ear. And this turns the sense upon the sense. So in exactly the same way, if something alters your normal way of seeing things, your attention is diverted from what you see to seeing itself. And this, of course, this awareness of awareness, turning your back upon yourself, even at this still rather superficial level is the beginning of a process of self exploration and self-knowledge. But it takes a little alteration to do it, as it were, to fasten your interests, because when your eyes are seeing perfectly, there is nothing to fasten on. You see, the eye creates a visual space of total clarity and emptiness, although that’s all inside your head and you find it difficult to attend to that which has no distinctive features. But when an alteration is introduced, there are some new distinctive feature to cite, but these are very hard to pin down.
I gave you an illustration last night of the feeling that everything is at a funny angle when a picture, as I said, is out of alignment. You know, it’s wrong. It’s clear now supposing everything gets out of alignment and everything has a sense of being funny. I don’t mean funny haha. I mean a bit funny. Queer.
Everything is just odd, just a little bit odd.
It’s as if everybody had suddenly gotten pointed ears and not only people, but everything has pointed ears on it. Little projectile sticking up to this point.
It is enough that elephant that’s foxy. It’s something something funny and leaves on trees suddenly all pointed ears.
We forget that this other impression is very strange, very hard to pin down. So one of the first inquiries that is always interesting in the psychedelic state is to discuss with yourself what is the difference between this way of seeing things and the normal way you can get a group of people sitting around and talking about that. And it becomes one of the oddest conversations because people can’t quite put down what it is. They all agree there’s something funny. Everything is a little bit off and yet it’s. The same as it should look, but it’s off.
And what do we mean by that? We really don’t know.
And it would be very difficult to establish a physiological basis for this. It might be done. But you see, it’s light as in the same way as when you put on colored glasses. Everything becomes colored with the color of the glass. And soon your consciousness will start to eliminate that effect. And it will begin after a while to look normal as it does when you wear sunglasses. So in the same way, if you put on a glass for every sense that you have and the name of that glass is funny, everything will look funny.
But nevertheless, this discussion, what is the difference between normal awareness and funny awareness focuses you on the whole thing of awareness, on the whole process, which does not ordinarily happen unless you do meditation practices designed to do exactly that.
So another thing that is comparable to this that happens is what I would call the feeling that everything is significant.
This is a funny word taken literally significant means something which serves as a sign which signifies something other than itself. I say this is a very significant remark that you’ve made means that it has a deep meaning.
But there is another sense of significant, which means important.
Valuable, interesting in that sense.
Now, how can you possibly describe a state of mind in which everything appears to be significant?
Logically, this is absurd. Just like everything being are off center at a funny angle. But nevertheless, there are however absurd it is, logically, it is nevertheless a characteristic of this state.
For example, that supposing somebody reads, somebody sits down and reads poetry.
Well, you see the meaning of the poetry in the ordinary way, but you also see a lot more than you normally notice. That is to say, every tone and texture of the reader’s voice, every clearing of his throat, every pause to take a breath, every gesture is integrated into the poem. It becomes important. It becomes significant. It is as if there were some sort of signal system in the brain which attaches cues to various experiences so that, you know, for example, the difference between a direct experience and a memory. Some experiences have the here and now cue attached to them as when you sit and look at somebody, other experiences as when you close your eyes and remember the face of a friend who is not here, they have the memory cue attached to them. So you know that that is not a here and now. So in a similar way, our experiences are, we attach to them cues important. Notice this. There are other cues unimportant, don’t bother. Or perhaps no cue at all. Now here in this state of consciousness, everything gets cued. Everything, everything you look at becomes important and you realize that it’s only an arbitrary kind of human scheme of selection that says these things are important and those are not.
Because everything is important to something.
You then get this curious sense is that it doesn’t really matter what you look at or what you listen to, anything will do.
Only there does remain a residual of value judgment so that you are still capable of saying, I would rather look at this than at that. But if it so happens that you just for the sake of experiment, choose to look at what you would rather not look at, it in turn becomes absolutely fascinating.
Among the other alterations I’ve thought of quite a number of them, I mentioned already the motion alteration where the world seems to breathe, where walls seem as if they were made of cloth with an electric fan behind so that they they wave where the pile in a carpet to look closely into it.
Every little bunch of threads constituting pile can start to wiggle.
Now, similar to that is what I would call the experience of grain in the census.
Once I was in this experiment and I was looking at the millions in windows like crazy, and although I wasn’t seeing any more Malians than they actually are.
I wasn’t seeing double. Nevertheless, the arrangement of one after another gave the impression of doubling. It was like seeing double. And yet on account, I counted the same as a person in the ordinary state of consciousness. That one seemed to be a replica of another, of another, of another of another. And the same would be true in looking at any sort of regular pattern in a carpet or whatever. But then the doctor said, look at your hold up a finger and see if you see that double.
And no, I said no. Oh, but yes.
But what I had seen was that just beside my finger, there was a wisp of cigaret smoke and this wisp being just at the same height as the finger right here became. A basis for an identical image of a second finger.
In other words, just the same way as you work the Rorschach blot into all sorts of shapes. So I work the Rorschach cloud of smoke in the air into a second finger behind beside the first. And for a moment it seemed just like it until I detected the source of the illusion.
This led to examination of stones and very quickly I suddenly somehow got into the impression that the whole space of the visual field seemed as if handfuls of pebbles had been thrown into it and the whole visual space was constructed out of ever so many insulating concentric circles. You know, for example, in the way that color pictures are sometimes reproduced. There are several techniques. They depend on the various kinds of screen that are used for printing. Well, there is a type of screen that is made up of ever so many circular patterns, all interlocking and into meshing with each other.
And so the whole visual world seemed to be based on a screen or grid of this kind.
Now, the interesting thing was that I could not at any point isolate actual lines in space forming this grid. Which did not coincide with some ordinary sense perceived object.
In other words, there was nothing to be seen that would not ordinarily be seen. And yet my eyes had organized what is ordinarily to be seen into this pattern of ever so many concentric circles.
It’s as if. In other words, when you listen to an alarm clock, you know, the old fashioned kind of go tick tock, tick tock, tick tock, tick tock, tick tock.
Now they don’t. They go. Tick, tick, tick, tick, tick, tick, tick, tick, tick. But you hear kick clock or tick tock because your mind resents the monotony of tick tick.
And then, you know, very afterwards you can rhyme doggerel to this clock and you can hear tunes in it. It becomes the beat and you fit tunes in with the beat and things like that. Well, in just the same way that you do that, so your eyes can organize what they see into patterns, which we would say in the ordinary way aren’t there. They can pick out waves as I see a row of people sitting with their heads on top. There’s a thing like this is the rippling right through, if you see.
And it was ever so many things like that can be done.
And so you stop when you see that asking questions, what is the right way to organize, the way you see the world? Everybody running around and agreeing, of course, that they see the world the normal way and the proper way. Yes. But is this actually so droll? It’s an agreement. Supposing we had agreed to see it a different way, because the world, as I’ve often said, is essentially an enormous Rorschach blot. It’s profoundly wiggly, any except in places where men have tried to straighten it out by building straight wall, straight highways and so on. But the natural world is wiggly all the way through, including our own bodies. Well, how are you going to interpret these wiggles? How are you going to decide how much of a wiggle constitutes one wiggle?
What is a unit of wiggle? See?
So we apparently what has happened in the course of minutes and many, many millennia is that persuasive human beings have said, well, now, look, this is the way it goes and everybody’s got to agree with me. Surely this is this is the way it goes. And everybody says because this guy is kind of rough. Yes. That’s right. That is the way it was. So whether these people were powerful, physically or powerful, persuasively, we’ve all more or less agreed to see the world the same way, although we have not agreed yet.
You see, to speak the same language, we’re still using an enormous number of different languages. But these things you see these organizing patterns which we project upon the world are, as it were, the languages of another kind. They are patterning methods, methods of thinking, structures of thinking, which we use to organize the external world in exactly the same way that one uses the the string bag of longer tubes and latitudes in which the world is hung on to organize it all the celestial latitude and longitude to organize the stars. These webs, these grids are fundamental to organized thinking about the world numbers you see are a similar kind of patterning. And the mathematician knows all kinds of patterns. Lattice is matrices and so on, which can be used for organizing things.
Another aspect of this grain experience in the senses is what I would call pointy ism, you know, pantheism is a school of painting that was invented in France, especially associated with the name of Siva, where the painting is composed of my new dots in many colors. And this is a very common psychedelic phenomenon, similar to the concentric circles that I just mentioned, to see everything consisting of points. Once again, you are not able to specify actually to put a needle point on any one of these points. And yet everything that you see, the ordinary vision of the world seems to be made up of my new dots. And you begin to wonder. I offer you know that after all, you have many nerve ends all over your body. There are endings of nerves, and these are especially sensitive in the retina.
And you wonder. Am I becoming aware of the multiplicity of my nerve ends of every single unit that picks up the external world?
And therefore I see in the external world a point corresponding to each one of my nerve ends that picks it up?
Well, it might be that, but as you think about that, you are liable to get fascinated with the idea of one nerve in one point, one as it were. Basic unit of sensitivity.
And I have christened this basic unit the eenie meenie the anyway. It is a fundamental, you might say, a unit of conscious life sensitive life.
And when you begin to think about this one unit of conscious life, that extraordinary things begin to happen because you realize, well, we’ve got really down to simplicity now we’ve got this as well. One fundamental point, which is what is called in Hindu philosophy, A, Bindu B in the U Bindu is an atom, but not a physical atom in the sense of what our physicists mean by an atom. This is an intellectual atom, the finest that any grain can get. It’s almost like the Euclidean point having position that no magnitude except that it isn’t quite as abstract as that. The any we need is very much alive. It is a unit of and I use this word to indicate what is common to all senses, a unit of sight, of sound, of touch, of taste, of smell. And all these senses, as you begin to realize with psychedelics, are really one sense specialized in five different ways.
That’s why you, in certain cases hear colors, see sounds and so on. It all seems to go together. Well, of course it would. Because they’re all specializations of our basic sensitivity. All senses are fundamentally a sort of touch. So the any meaning is is a fundamental unit of touch. Now, as you know about a neuron, a neuron is such that it can give either yes or no as a message. That is to say, either it fires or it doesn’t.
So then the eeny weeny is like that. It’s either black or white.
But you begin to see that it’s both because black always involves white and white always involves black.
So this anyway is one but two faced.
Also, it’s being one implies all the others, one implies many because you can’t think one unless you can think many, you can’t see many unless you can think one. The concepts are inseparable. One doesn’t mean anything unless you know what many is. Many doesn’t mean anything unless you know what one is. So suddenly the any weenie being one implies all the others. And being itself, it implies an outside, which is not itself.
But if you can’t have the outside without the inside.
In other words, if you can’t have the space around the any weenie without the any meaning, and you can’t have any meaning without the space, then somehow it’s very difficult to say that the any weenie with the one little unit and everything else are different.
Then they go together.
And this leads you into the most fascinating of all aspects of psychedelic experience, which I would call the experience of relativity. This gets us back to significance. What is it bought?
Now, we human beings think we’re important and that we have a very complex civilization that we have, that our libraries, our cities, our organizations, our institutions, nations, our wonders of religion and philosophy and art and architecture and so on is the most complicated and the most significant thing that ever existed on Earth.
And when we look at and realize that there are little cells in our bodies that have a sort of independent civic life and that there are all kinds of microorganisms which when we see them, we don’t see the familiar human shape.
We see something more or less globular. We say, well, that’s a very primitive shape compared with the shape of man.
It doesn’t have a highly organized nervous system as ours and therefore is obviously an inferior creature.
But with the psychedelic use, you have time to think about things you don’t ordinarily think about.
There are now not so hurried, not so hurry. How do you know this thing isn’t as complicated as you are?
You haven’t been really looked. Start looking.
And we know a scientist can start looking and he can find that one small, tiny micro organism has very complicated indeed. And why wouldn’t it be that from the point of view of this micro organism, its affairs are extraordinarily complex and very important? I mean, imagine just something that we know a lot about. It’s a long way from a microorganism. It’s considered a bee. What do bees know about subtle distinctions between different kinds of honey that we’ve never thought of? Supposing a bee is arranged that it does exactly what it likes. And yet at the same time, this is always socially acceptable.
Pretty groovy sort of civilization now. Wouldn’t it be? You never have to stop to think. Would this offend anybody or anything like that? You do just what you feel like doing. And it’s everybody. Except it’s perfectly fine.
You play the rules automatically. Well, human beings would say that’s not much of a challenge. After all, it’s a much more significant if you could do something wrong, if you could make a mistake. Well, that’s our way of thinking of it. That’s our particular taste that we think it’s more fun to play that way. They may think it’s more fun to play it the other way. They say, well, why don’t you want to introduce all that nonsense for when you can live a perfectly satisfactory life like a bee? Why do you want to go and bring in a kind of principle of evil choice just to make everything messy? Well, it’s another form of game. You know, every game has some kind of a forfeit in it.
You’ve got to lose something in order to find it to win it back. And that’s the essence of a game. That’s why you shuffle the deck of cards at the beginning to create chaos. So and then you work against it. You see that everybody has something as some kind of thing that’s a forfeit to play their life game. Otherwise, there’s been no game. See, we think it’s important to survive. Well, it isn’t. But we say so. You think it doesn’t make the slightest difference whether you live a short time or whether you live a long time. After all, here are these fruit flies, drosophila. They come and go, come and go, come and go with extraordinary rapidity. Generation after generation in a few days. And but far from their point of view, this is perfectly satisfactory normal life because I think the same about myself. And if I cannot assume similar processes in other creatures which are going on in me, then I am reduced to total solipsism.
That is to say that there are people who argue that although you can learn Chinese, you will never. However much you study Chinese and however much you speak with Chinese people, you will never do anything really that understands Chinese because you weren’t born with it. You are always translating it into English. And so you’re permanently precluded from understanding another culture. Well, you can carry that argument right down to understanding another person of your own culture and say, well, he’s another person and you never really know another person. So we all are broken up into island universes which have no real communication between each other at all.
Well, the only reason I reject that is that it affords that basis. It is a game rule which has very little play in it. In other words, it’s like it’s as boring as tossing to see whether it will be heads or tails. But the assumption that other people and other cultures really can be understood and that the further assumption that things that are not human, that maybe insects or mammals or fish also are highly civilized is far more interesting assumption than that.
They are merely creatures of no importance.
But so you see that, though, that it is an assumption that we ought to go on living and that. But it was he. It’s a meaningless assumption when you really examine it because mere going on mere quantitative length of time is just so much time. It has no special qualitative meaning to it. So we say a person died a glorious death.
He died for some great cause, you see. And when he went out to sea. But we say that thing that went on for a few minutes. Short life. He was a young man. He went up in a band. But it was a glorious explosion. And everybody builds monuments to him and says he was a great man.
So there is a value then to the short and explosive as well as to the long and dull rock of a seen. But when you’re really fixed on a game rule, you see like you want to go on living.
It’s very, very difficult indeed to see that you really don’t have to see.
In other words, what this so often comes down to this relativity. Well, let me postpone that for a moment. I want to further the idea of relativity. So what you see then is that at every level of being, all creatures are confronted with the same tasks and have the same problems and are really in the same situation. The infinitely small is as big as the big candy and the big is as small as the small can be.
Because after all, when you get down, down, down, down to the most Manute things you can conceive, it turns out that they are surrounded with spaces that are relatively as vast as the spaces between the bodies of the solar system or between the different galaxies on the large scale. So if there are beings of any kind of sensitivity, dwelling on these Manute points is whatever they will look out and are what we see as galaxies will not be visible to them at all.
They will find themselves in the same sort of universe we find ourselves in because the kind that you see, every creature that is sensitive finds itself in the middle. So each one of you is in the middle of the world because you radiate a sensitivity.
In other words, the extent to which your eyes will see your ears will pick up sound is always the so-called outer sphere.
And you can expand that sphere by instruments, telescopes and radio astronomy or whatever it may be.
But still, you are in the middle.
That’s the most important place. Everybody’s in the most important place. The middle. And we say, man, is the measure of all things. It’s a funny feeling that man stands in the middle causing deaths. He knows, as it were, so much higher than himself and so much lower than himself.
Probably equal in both directions, so much bigger, so much littler. So when you get down to very tiny, that thing two feels at the same place that you do, but you might say, oh, well, but not.
But really, it’s very tiny because after all, we are fairly tiny. And there may be, in other words, beyond all the galaxies that we are aware of, vast systems that we have no knowledge of at all. And they are, after all, bigger. Are they?
Are you sure bigger or are they just in the same place?
You see, eventually you can construct a scheme where you get bigger and bigger and bigger, and that bigger is the same place as the tiniest because round in the circle.
That’s you might say at first. Difficult to think about, but it is perfectly logical concept, perfectly simple. Only it’s unfamiliar.
So is the sense. You see, as this grows, you realize that everything is in the same position. I remember I was thinking about this once and at the same time listening to Hindu music. And the concept of this immense relativity was really moving in me and I was full of marvel at it. And it was somewhat terrifying. Somehow the Hindu music is a very Hindu music is very deep stuff.
You have to have a quite a trained ear to go and see that it is something just as profound as anything written by Bach or Beethoven. But I suddenly said, you know, there are moments in this music when God himself calls out for help.
I don’t know what I meant by that, but. But something like this.
In the Hindu philosophy, as you know, they believe that God plays hide and seek with himself and that he.
As it were, half the time, whatever time is anywhere half of it is. He gets lost deliberately and forgets that he’s gone and he gets as lost as last can get, you know, which is the end of experience that we call the screaming moments.
And that’s when God calls out for help. Immediately answers, of course, because he wakes up and finds out he really is. But once you begin to see through this relativity thing that everything is central. Everything is as important as everything else. However big, however little you realize it’s all God in the same position. But now that begins to scare you because you say, well, I can’t believe that I am God.
That would surely be very blasphemous because I all I’m not very good and God is good and that I am not very powerful.
And God is supposed to be all powerful things in what we put. You mean you’re not powerful? Isn’t a question of whether you are powerful or not powerful. Powerful and impotent are just two opposites of the same game. If you didn’t feel some lack of power, you wouldn’t feel any power. I mean, you couldn’t be all powerful because that would mean nothing. There would be just nothing happening. You were all powerful that it would mean power and impotence to be able, not to be able. Our two phases of the same thing.
So in the same way is the voluntary what I can do and the involuntary. What I can’t or can’t help doing are they. They are phases of the same. You wouldn’t know one without the other.
And you begin to see. Isn’t that fascinating?
And then in a funny way, you begin to realize it’s a sort of secret that you are willing.
What happens to you without your will?
Because you see that you couldn’t will anything unless there was also that that was other that you couldn’t will that was beyond your control.
And it begins to dawn. You begin to see the whole thing that you’re not just something fighting the world or on your little lonesome, but that the whole thing that you think you’re fighting is the other side of you. But you put the whole game is to make it seem as other and as strange as possible. That’s fun, because that’s getting way out. That’s that’s making excitement. And you say, well, now, why then can’t I just switch it off?
Couldn’t I suddenly realized, bang like this sitting here, that all that I is other than me, all that I don’t well is really me. Why can’t I just do that? See, I only ask you, you think you can’t because you think about it superficially. Would you want to? Would you want the disintegration of the other? And find out that it’s merely you in the sense of your ego?
The self has to contain something more complex than merely. Ego has to have an element in it which seems to resist.
See, when you move your arm like this, you have what are called antagonistic muscles and dependent on these is motion. I prefer to call them complementary muscles, but still they are called antagonistic. It’s all right. So when this muscle contracts and the bicep contracts, this one relaxes. And so the opposite way when you do this. Now you see they play with each other against each other. And so they make a movement possible.
So it is with the voluntary or the involuntary with the power and the non power where I conquer and where I surrender.
Did you get this feeling now? See that? You see, I played it all the way through everything. Every creature, every center sensitivity, every weenie in the world is the same one. They’re all in the same position. But the whole thing is to look as if they want it, because that’s the the hiding part of the game, the concealing part, so that every single any winning or human being or whatever you want.
Any unit of sensitivity, however you want to measure it looks down and looks up and says, well, those things aren’t me, though.
They’re where they’re very different things. Especially I don’t like spiders or snakes or whatever it is that you don’t like and. No, no, that’s that’s that’s that’s not human. And we talk about snakes, eyes, you know how they have no warmth in them. What do you think I’d look like to a snake? I often said, what about it? How do the teeth of a gorgeous girl look to an oyster? So then you realize, you see that the whole point of it is that those things have to look different. That’s the whole point, that if you didn’t feel they were not human and there was something else, you wouldn’t know you were human. And so they on their side look at you and you as a human being have some claim, although it’s probably merely relative to be the most predatory monster on us, because the fish stay in the sea, the birds pretty much stay in air, but human beings range through an ocean and everything after their prey is opposing, the sharks could walk.
When all this starts in.
You begin to experience an extraordinary kinship with all other forms of life, not only kinship with insects and worms and bacteria and so on, but also people, because you begin to see that everybody is faced with the same problem you are. Everybody has the same death problem and that everybody’s workings aren’t to be easily dismissed as good and bad and say, well, that’s good and that’s bad and therefore I can feel. Well, what’s the point of all this judgment?
As a matter of fact, people judge despite the fact that Jesus said judge, not that you’ll be not judged, but what’s the point of it all?
Well, the point of it all is so that I feel that I am right.
See, because you can despise other people in certain ways or other classes of people and say, well, they’re not that terrible.
But you wouldn’t know you were in the right unless you had all those terrible people around you. I was talking in a previous seminar about in groups. And just for those of you who weren’t here. I’ll say briefly. Everybody’s trying to get themselves into an in group, that is to say, to be nice people. And everybody who does constitute an in group thinks that they’re the nice people and that the outsiders, even though they belong to a very fancy in group, are all nasty people saying.
And so if you’re in any given American town, say, long live on the right side of the tracks and you know, the nice people and they’re all those bums and [Unrecognized] and whatever Mexicans over there and you say, are they on their hands, say, gee, those we really live a real life because we have to face poverty.
We have to where we are right down close to the bone. And here, although it is rough. The meat is sweet. And those people don’t know it. Those wretched. They’re all big buses. And they own all the land and they own all the property. And they are a worthless bunch of junk.
They’re not even Christians and they don’t want anything to do with them. And so they feel they’re the real in Group C, but neither one can know it is the real in group without the contrast or the other thing. You will depend on people who you could look down on in order to be able to feel up. And so you should recognize this and say thank you very much for giving me the privilege of being an improved, because without you I wouldn’t know where I was.
And so you see all these human games running together and you begin to feel, gee, isn’t that marvelous? You know, at first it starts being a kind of cynical. You see everybody’s out after himself and that some people are very loving and very cooperative because they realize that this pays, that this makes other people love them and that they’re playing a game just like the people who are hostile and grumpy and aggressive and rude. And they get their way that way will see everybody’s playing the game, being selfish. And the first is gives you the horrors they are.
We all, after all. Nothing but little horrible island selves. Each one out for itself.
And as this becomes very uncomfortable, if you’ve got to you know, if you’ve been brought up with a Christian conscience, then you begin to see what is it that you’re being selfish about? What is it that you love when you say, I love myself? This it becomes exceedingly puzzling. You realize that what you love when you love yourself is always some other object than yourself.
You like eating ice cream. You like beautiful views. You like your house. You like your friend. You like kissing beautiful girls. You like this, but it’s. Not me.
You suddenly realize you can’t separate yourself that you love from everything else that your self implies. Then you know, which is up. But it soon terrified and you suddenly see the whole thing. And this can become with psychedelics a very, very vivid thing. The whole universe has a colossal energy play going this way and that way. Totally indestructible. And it’s all you.
And you didn’t know it.
It doesn’t mean you’re the only one. This thing proliferates in millions and millions of centers, but it’s all one center.
And you can get the physical sensation of the thing being enormous, as it were, sort of center of light, of joyous, loopy, glorious, loving bond like that. And this will only usually last for a few moments where you feel you’ve actually put your finger on the center of reality. And it is this true men, this luminous energy, just beautiful.
And then as as this passes off, you see, as it were, the reflected glory of this in everything you look at.
And at that moment, you see in the experience, you begin to come down.
And as you look more and more, you see, of course, I don’t object to being in a different state of consciousness than what I’ve just been in.
You go back to being ordinary because now I’ve seen what ordinary consciousness is underneath. It’s this fantastic game of hide and seek and perfectly all right to come back, because actually, since all is one, there is no difference between my perfectly everyday existence and this stupendous vision of glory that I have just seen, because the one implies the other. They go together. This is the game. This is the hide and seek. And so you can come back into an extremely integrated, restful, quiet sense of peace.
Never forgetting that you have seen relativity and that relativity is the key to the fundamental unity because that which is related all extremes are related to each other in a polar way. They are not things that are separate from each other, as if they are opposing forces of light and darkness came from such opposite ends of the cosmos that there wasn’t even a joining point between them and met in a clash. It is rather that as a flower expands from a center and blossoms, you could draw diameters across it.
Picking out opposite petals, but they all come from the same center.