“Pay attention. And keep breathing” (on the possibility of having a bad trip)
Terence Mckenna(1946-2000), psychedelic superstar (star of the underground, like the blazing fractal rhizomatic corals doormant in the archaic mind) “the real Tim Leary”, (Terence doesn’t smell like candy C.I.A.) a postmodern technoshaman and cultural bricoleur who delivered a message full of heart and epiphanic iridiscence.
Terence inherited a scientific, naturalistic mind, approaching reality as one that explores his housegarden, and later the nearby forest and later the Amazon or the Himalayan mountain reef, and way through into his neurocortex-weaved-with-the-galaxy and all the books and memes and crystals -a holofloral internet, reavelling an informatrix of Logoflowing spirit speaking softly like the voice in the digital wildreness.
“I have always been extraordinarily obsessive about a certain kind of iridescence, a certain quality that can haunt matter, or people, or a painting. My first obsession was minerals. I went from minerals to butterflys, and from butterflys to science fiction, which I definitely consider a psychedelic drug because it empowers the imagination”.
After graduating from Ecology and Conservation, at U.C Berkely, Terence travelled to Asia smuggling dope and collecting butterflys for biological supply companies. He once was wanted by the Interpol.
His first expererience with psychedelic plants was his ingestion of commercial morning-glory seeds, the virgin-climber-flower, the epitomy of the Gaian-Xochipilli devoted plant.
Mckenna developed a theory for evolutionary polypharmonics, where psychedelic plants are central in the unraveling of a Green Consciousness, Veriditas, the plant-plan for the planet, in this way sweetly entering the Gaian Mind or Noosphere and forming a symbiotic synergical synesthetical realtionship with Earth and Eschaton. Like riding the timewaves in a vegetable philosophical stoneboard.
Terence studied and experimented profoundly with the nature of psychedelics, specially with tryptamine molecules, such as the ones in psylocibn mushrooms, ayahuasca, d.m.t. and the brain itself. And what he found was awe-inspiring and skybreaking. This plants, this spirits, shared a powerful morphic field of resonance that enabled access to archetypical transdimensional information. Blurring frontiers between mind and matter and man and stars and starbeings.
“The planet has a kind of intelligence, it can actually open a channel of communication with an individual human being. The message that nature sends is, transform your language through a synergy between electronic culture and the psychedelic imagination, a synergy between dance and idea, a synergy between understanding and intuition, and dissolve the boundaries that your culture has sanctioned between you, to become part of this Gaian supermind”.
Wholly intriguing is his intuition of this metahistorical relationship between plants and humans. Mckenna played with the idea that our evolutionary path is thorougly linked with the physical technology that plants embed on us. “On the Mushroom-dotted plains of Africa where the Great Horned Goddess…”, monkeys wading from trees might have eaten psylocibe mushrooms, triggering their language skills:
“The psilocybin — which in small doses provides an increased visual acuity, in slightly larger doses a physical sexual arousal and in still larger doses full-on ecstatic hallucinations and glossolalia — gave evolutionary advantages including the rearing of off-spring to reproductive age amongst those tribes who partook of it. The changes caused by the introduction of this drug to the primate diet were many—McKenna theorizes, for instance, that synesthesia (the blurring of boundaries between the senses) caused by psilocybin led to the development of spoken language: the ability to form pictures in another person’s mind through the use of vocal sounds”.
Terenece, who among many things, was a voratious reader and herme-naut of Joyce’s Wake, in his entheogenic trances repeteadly had the vision of the Word incarnating into material form (“from heard to beheld”) a glittering glossolallic hyperobject that trascends ordinary communication into the visible seal of truth, in his multisampled d.m.t voyage:
”And so like jewelled self dribbling basketballs these (machine self-transforming elves) things come running forward and what they are doing with this visible language that they create is they are making gifts! They are making gifts for you and they will say amuwi takwiti wati fatiunaabyumonya phama woaniaum …”
For, like the Kabbalist:
“The real secret of magic is that the world is made of words. And that if you know the words that the world is made of, you can make of it whatever you wish. ”
or “the if the world is code, then we can hack it”.
And even more, Terence believed that the man-plant relationship was the key for a safe passage into hyperspace, in this trialing times of ecocide and cultural bestrangement. Enabling us to recapture the q-bits of the broken fractal map, and propulsing us with a vegtable star-ship (greendream bardo-thodol gimmicks) into evolutionary final exam.
“What is happening to our world is ingression of novelty toward what Whitehead called “concrescence,” a tightening gyre. Everything is flowing together. The “autopoetic lapis,” the alchemical stone at the end of time, coalesces when everything flows together. When the laws of physics are obviated, the universe disappears, and what is left is the tightly bound plenum, the monad, able to express itself for itself, rather than only able to cast a shadow into physis as its reflection. I come very close here to classical millenarian and apocalyptic thought in my view of the rate at which change is accelerating. From the way the gyre is tightening, I predict that concrescence will occur soon – around 2012 A.D. It will be the entry of our species into hyperspace, but it will appear to be the end of physical laws accompanied by the release of the mind into the imagination”.
2012 is the endate of the Mayan Calendar Cosmogenesis , but this date was independently attained by Mckenna since the early seventies, through trance pattern-analysis, whatever that might mean.
Terence made a living from writing and giving conferences. He entered the “black hole” in Hawaii, by his ethnobotanical reservoir, in the year 2000, just short of seeing the end of the world as we know it. He was a master of channeling the waves of words and sharing them with a crowd eager to explore the mystery and the mystics of building a spacecraft through the concrescence of ideas and experiences harvesting in the body. Terence even accomodated a strange spore from outer space
The mushroom speaks:
“I am old, fifty times older than thought in your species, and I came from the stars… I seek intercourse with your species”.
Terence made it again intelligent and exciting to reach into plants and nature and take their teachings back into our technoscapes, bright priceless connections that one can never forget.
“We are like coral animals embedded in a technological reef of extruded psychic objects. All our tool making implies our belief in an ultimate tool. That tool is the flying saucer, or the soul, exteriorized in three-dimensional space. The body can become an internalized holographic object embedded in a solid-state, hyperdimensional matrix that is eternal, so that we each wander through a true Elysium”.
“I speak of the technology of building a starship, I imagine it will be done with voltages far below the voltage of a common flashlight battery. This is, after all, where the most interesting phenomena go on in nature. Thought is that kind of phenomenon; metabolism is that kind of phenomenon”.
“My vision of the final human future is an effort to exteriorize the soul and internalize the body, so that the exterior soul will exist as a superconducting lens of translinguistic matter generated out of the body of each of us at a critical juncture at our psychedelic bar mitzvah”.
“History is the dash over ten to fifteen thousand years from nomadism to flying saucer, hopefully without ripping the envelope of the planet so badly that the birth is aborted and fails, and we remain brutish prisoners of matter”.
“It may instead be what I’ve recently come to suspect – that the human soul is so alienated from us in our present culture that we treat it as an extraterrestrial. To us the most alien thing in the cosmos is the human soul.
” It is no great accomplishment to hear a voice in the head. The accomplishment is to make sure it is telling the truth, because the demons are of many kinds: “Some are made of ions, some of mind; the ones of ketamine, you’ll find, stutter often and are blind.
“The Hubble Telescope is inside us”.
“The three evils are: Monotony, Monogamy and Hegemony”.
“Consciousness expansion in human beings is going to become an absolute necessity because we are summoning out of the woodwork of cybernetic technology machines that are going to require super-intelligent humans to direct and have discourse with them”
“Its just me, my mind, and Mother Nature”.
“Hipparchus, in the second century BC, was asked what he feared most about death, and he said, Not being able to follow the latest discoveries in astronomy. Well, that’s precisely my position”.
“The best answer I’ve gotten yet out of this is from Don Delillo’s Underworld, where the nun discovers that when you die you become your website”.
Terence’s prescrptions are crazy enough that they might work…
Among his most significant works are:
“The Magic Mushroom Growers Guide”
“The Invisible Landscape”
“The Food of the Gods”
“Trialogues”: Terence Mckenna, Ralph Abraham and Rupert Sheldrake
“The Archaic Revival”
His words have been put to music by such performers as:
The Future Sound of London
Shpongle, and many more psychedelic trance bands.
For showing a new path in digital allchemy, a path of quantum organic revival -forwardback into the vibrant origi-, and keeping alive the ethereal flaming equation between Logos and surf, for being a warrior of the nightfence, for having fun at the most intense moment of disembodiment and becoming a pure wave of silver information. Terence Mckenna is a psychedelic river friend.