TagTerrence McKenna

Interview with Dennis McKenna at Boing Boing

dennis mckenna

Avi: What was your aim in turning to academic research on hallucinogens?

Dennis: For me, partly it was an exercise in self-redemption. I went to La Chorrera not really knowing any science, or really knowing very much about anything (I was 20 at the time) but thinking I knew a whole lot. The experience at La Chorrera taught me that I really didn’t know anything, especially anything about science. A lot of what we’d encountered at La Chorrera seemed to challenge all scientific paradigms. But rather than rejecting science outright I determined that I really should learn how to ‘do’ science before rejecting it. And so that’s what I did. I was also interested in the nuts-and-bolts aspect of what had happened to us. I committed the error that many people who work with psychedelics do, the notion that somehow ‘the trip is in the drug’. Of course it isn’t in the drug, it’s in the interaction between the drug and the brain/mind, and it’s mostly in the latter. But in some respects I thought if I studied the drug, how it works in the brain, and so on, that I might somehow arrive at an understanding of how it could elicit such experiences. Of course studying the drug alone will not do that; but I think that many neuroscientists still approach it from that perspective, which is why the picture of what these things ‘do’ will remain incomplete.

Boing Boing: Interview: Dennis McKenna

See the Technoccult dossier on the Brothers McKenna for much more.

Dossiers: Timothy Leary, Dennis and Terrence McKenna, and Hakim Bey/Peter Lamborn Wilson

Timothy Leary

Dennis McKenna

Terrence McKenna

hakim bey peter lamborn wilson

The latest batch of dossiers is here!

Timothy Leary

The brothers McKenna

Hakim Bey/Peter Lamborn Wilson

2012 claims debunked

2012

Information is Beautiful examines several claims made by 2012 believers and finds their claims lacking.

Information is Beautiful: 2012: The End Of The World?

2012 – a crock of shit

Mark Dery writes:

Pinchbeck, like New Age thinkers all the way back to Madame Blavatsky, preaches a refried gospel of ancient wisdom and mystical, supra-rational knowledge. In 2007, he told The New York Times that “the rational, empirical worldview…has reached its expiration date…we’re on the verge of transitioning to a dispensation of consciousness that’s more intuitive, mystical, and shamanic.”

Well, somebody say “Amen”! There’s entirely too much rationalism and empiricism clouding the American mind these days, in a nation where, according to the Harris and other polls, 42% of Republicans are convinced President Obama wasn’t born in the United States, 10% of the nation’s voters are certain he’s a Muslim, and 61% of the population believe in the Virgin birth but only 47% believe in Darwinian evolution. […]

When I asked her what she thought of Pinchbeck’s invocation of Mayan beliefs, and of the 2012-ers’ use of the Maya in general, she was blunt. “What makes me angriest about Pinchbeck’s bogus, profiteering bullshit isn’t so much him, but the fact that that many people are racist enough to believe any asshole white guy who declares himself an expert in Mayan culture. Did it ever occur to anyone to ask practicing Maya priests out in the villages? […] It absolutely enrages me that while people I know in Guatemala, traditional priests, are struggling to figure out how to provide clean drinking water to their families, how to feed their communities, how to avoid being shot by the gangs and thieves that plague the roads more than ever—while they’re struggling to survive and keep their communities intact, assholes like Pinchbeck are making a buck off of white man’s parodies of their culture.”

h+: 2012: Carnival of Bunkum

(via Chris Arkenberg)

See also: Tracing the origins of the 2012 phenomenon

2013: Or, What to Do When the Apocalypse Doesn’t Arrive

Gary Lachman, author of Turn Off Your Mind writes:

Much has been written about 2012, pointing out both the value and the flaws in Argüelles’s and McKenna’s interpretations. I don’t intend to repeat those here. The strangeness of the ideas did not repel me. At the time that I came across them, I was reading Rudolf Steiner, who had his own prophecies concerning the third millennium, which, to be honest, were rather vague. I had also already spent some years in the Gurdjieff “work,” so odd ideas were not a threat. What troubled me then and today is what I call the “apocalyptic gesture,” a point I raised recently on the Reality Sandwich website, much of which is dedicated to the 2012 scenario. The desire for some once-and-for-all break with the given conditions of life seems, to me at least, to be embedded in our psyche and is a form of historical or evolutionary impatience. Social, political, or cultural conditions may trigger it, but in essence it’s the same reaction as losing patience with some annoying, mundane business and, in frustration, knocking it aside with the intent to make a “clean start.” While in our personal lives this may result in nothing more than a string of false beginnings and a lack of staying power, on the broader social and political scale it can mean something far more serious. […]

The “Summer of Love” in 1967—which by many accounts wasn’t as groovy as believed—quickly became the year of “Street Fighting Man” in 1968, when the “generation gap” promised to turn into something like revolution, and dangerous slogans like “If you’re not part of the solution, you’re part of the problem” promoted a simplistic us-or-them scenario. Yet by 1969 the hopes of an Aquarian Age had been severely battered by the gruesome Charles Manson murders and the Rolling Stones’ disastrous concert at Altamont, when Hell’s Angels murdered one man and terrorized hundreds of others, including the Stones themselves. (I tell the story in Turn Off Your Mind: The Mystic Sixties and the Dark Side of the Age of Aquarius.) Exorbitantly high hopes can often lead to very deep depressions, and in a microcosmic popular sense, within a few years the peace and love unreservedly embraced by the flower generation became the “no future” of the punks. Cynicism, jadedness, and pessimism often constitute the hangover from the intoxication of excessively high expectations. No one rejects ideals more vigorously than a bruised romantic.

Disinfo: 2013: Or, What to Do When the Apocalypse Doesn’t Arrive

It’s not what Lachman is writing about here, but a detailed account of the origins of the 2012 myth can be found in Sacha Defesche’s excellent paper The 2012 Phenomenon.

Robert Anton Wilson, Terrence McKenna, and Rudy Rucker in Manual of Evasion

Manual of Evasion was a 1994 Portuguese film starring Robert Anton Wilson, Terrence McKenna, and Rudy Rucker. Above are some clips from the film.

More Info: Rudy Rucker’s Blog

(via Posthuman Blues)

Whole Earth Review: The Alien Intelligence of Plants by Terrence McKenna and Howard Rheingold

A full issue of the Whole Earth Review from 1989, edited by Terrence McKenna and Howard Rheingold.

The Whole Earth Review: The Alien Intelligence of Plants

(via Chris 23)

Tracing the Origins of the 2012 Phenomenon

In his master’s thesis Sacha Defesche traces the origins of the 2012 phenomenon, from the Brothers McKenna to Jose Arguelles to David Icke and beyond.

here has the notion of the year 2012 as holding a special apocalyptic or millennial significance originated? What are the most important historical sources for the 2012 phenomenon? Are there indeed several ‘pure’ (as in independent) sources of prophecy that separately mention the importance of the 2012 date as is often thought in New Age circles?

Skepsis: The 2012 Phenomenon

Dennis McKenna interview

dennis mckenna interview

Originally from High Times

What we were doing was not science – it was magic. We thought we were doing science but we didn’t know anything about science at the time. We set up what we called an experiment, but what we should have really called a ritual. Honestly it was a ritual but we had the idea that if we took a large dose of mushrooms, along with ayahuasca and heard this sound, that we could generate this standing wave form and that we could actually transfer that into the body of a mushroom in a stable way so that it would be outside the body and it would be sustained by it’s own superconducting circuitry, and you would be able to see it and be it at the same time. It would be, in a sense, an artifact from beyond that you generate out of your own head. It would be a super, transbiological artifact, translinguistic matter that would be meaning itself fixed into a biological matrix.

RAK> And do you think it succeeded, the experiment?

DENNIS> (hesitates)… No… (laughs) No, not exactly… What we were trying to do, essentially, if I can harken back to the basis of this in myth and history, I mean the closest analogy to it is the Philosopher’s Stone. We were trying to recreate the Philosopher’s Stone, which in some ways is the ultimate artifact. That thing that exists and is both mind and matter and responds to thought and is you and can do anything you can imagine, literally, anything you can imagine.

Full Story: Undergrowth

Dennis McKenna will be keynoting Esozone: the Other Tomorrow in Portland, OR this October.

Terence McKenna’s Ex-Library

Esalen lost little of their own archives, the vast bulk of their books, photos, audio and videotapes residing elsewhere. Unfortunately, the institute was also using the offices to store the amazing library of Terence McKenna, the visionary psychedelic bard who passed away in 2000. The plan was to eventually install the books at Esalen, a place that Terence loved but which is hardly associated with scholarly pursuit. That plan will never be realized.

TechGnosis: Terence McKenna’s Ex-Library

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