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The Profound Insights of Philip K. Dick and Terence McKenna Into The Nature of Consciousness

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posted on Feb, 19 2013 @ 10:31 PM
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I wanted to share an article I wrote for disinfo.com on the late great PKD


Much of his writing revolved around trying to understand his encounter with: The Logos, Other, Overmind, valis, right-brain, Plasmate, Opticus, spontaneous shamanic experience (pick your term), that occurred during March of 1974. He was filled with visions, premonitions, expanded perceptions, and odd synchronicities that went on for weeks. At times he fluently spoke in an ancient language he’d never learned, only to later translate and understand what he’d said. At one point he even correctly diagnosed his son’s illness, which was confirmed upon taking him to a doctor. Phil came to regard it as a healing and transformative experience, much like tapping into the mystery ever present behind the veil of mundane experience.


www.disinfo.com...

This is interesting because many science fiction authors, and extremely imaginative individuals in general, unknowingly attain deep insights into the nature of consciousness and reality that don't fully surface into collective awareness until long after the fact.

Phil is, in many respects, an extreme case of this in my opinion. While his rantings may occassinally come off as the musings of a madman, let us not forget that genius often goes hand in hand with "insanity"...

"It is no measure of health to be well adjusted to a profoundly sick society"

It seems that modern science has unknowingly gathered a mass of evidence that verifies some of his most basic intuition, which are intuitions or "myths" shared by almost every ancient culture we know about. The problem is that the neural condition it outlines is rendering us too deluded to even recognize it when its staring us in the face...But anyways, you'll hear more about that in the links.

So, do we have any PKD fans here? :]
edit on 19-2-2013 by bobwilson because: bad title! lol
edit on 20-2-2013 by Kandinsky because: added ex-text




posted on Feb, 19 2013 @ 10:48 PM
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reply to post by bobwilson
 


Had the pleasure last weekend...bought a cheap copy of Prometheus...disappointed...Along with 6 other dvds, all really crappy, bar one...The Imposter based on a P.K.D. story...I must read more of his life...

A99



posted on Feb, 19 2013 @ 10:52 PM
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"It is no measure of health to be well adjusted to a profoundly sick society"


what a great quote.

so, PKD used high-speed vitamins to "break through" to the other side? do you suppose this was a regimen that could be followed with similar results? obviously you are of the opinion that he was successful.



posted on Feb, 19 2013 @ 11:15 PM
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reply to post by bobwilson
 

I recently stumbled across a bunch of Philip K. Dick's lectures and letters and writings and was also blown away with the depth of insight he had attained that is still rejected or mocked by many today... and was fascinated to see it filtered through his unique cultural and personal perspective.

The perception of insanity is just a lack of understanding.




posted on Feb, 19 2013 @ 11:18 PM
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Originally posted by tgidkp



"It is no measure of health to be well adjusted to a profoundly sick society"


what a great quote.

so, PKD used high-speed vitamins to "break through" to the other side? do you suppose this was a regimen that could be followed with similar results? obviously you are of the opinion that he was successful.


No, not necessarily. Phil was already prone to spontaneous "psychedelic experiences to begin with", and here he seems to have essentially gotten lucky, as he was already an incredibly gifted person to begin with..

Not to mention he frequently engaged in things such as sleep deprivation, which has been a shamanic technique employed for thousands of years in order to revert the hemispheric dominance problem that has arose. It essentially tires the left hemisphere out quicker than the right, allowing greater access to the more dormant side.

A number of things can help access, and mileage will vary from person to person, but in general massive doses of vitamins alone aren't going to accomplish much in the way of shifting perception. It will help, but a combination of approaches is far more effective. And what is reached through that approach alone is still guaranteed to be only a glimpse of what functionality remains locked away.

We were flooding our brains- the most complex and chemically sensitive tissue in the known universe- with hundreds of thousands of different plant chemicals 24/7 for tens of millions of years. We're only beginning to learn the immense impact these biochemicals have on every aspect of cellulary physiology.

If something like 200 micrograms of '___' can impact ones state of mind so dramatically, then what about the galaxy of chemicals that we know were present? Its insane to think we can just change the build materials and fuel of the most advanced bio-technology in the known universe to something completely irrelevant to its original development and expect it to be free of severe dysfunction.

This all may sound insane to people...but how often have you heard "humans are nuts"? Everyone knows it on some level...and if we really are brain damaged, then of course it would seem crazy at first...Try telling a person with dementia they have dementia!

If there is even the slightest chance its true, then the only sane thing is to check into it. There would be zero evidence if it wasn't and a growing number of researchers are agreeing with this theory

leftinthedark.org.uk...
edit on 19-2-2013 by bobwilson because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 19 2013 @ 11:43 PM
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I am a Dick Head, I have read most of his books, and love them.

I have no doubt that he was some type of genius.

I tried to read The Exegesis of Philip K. Dick but could not really get through it, it was a little too deep for me, and made me feel dizzy.



posted on Feb, 19 2013 @ 11:50 PM
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reply to post by cavrac
 


Yeah hahah, I know that feeling! I'm only a fraction of a way through it and I've been reading it in spurts now and again.

Definitely very insightful so far, albeit a bit on the lengthy side



posted on Feb, 20 2013 @ 12:50 AM
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I found this right as I am heading out the door, but will bookmark your article to read later.
I am a PKD fan- he was brilliant!



posted on Feb, 20 2013 @ 02:17 AM
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Those who regard science-fiction as nothing more than cardboard pulp fantasy about gruesome space monsters, absurd inter-galaxial adventures spreading American democracy throughout the universe, and improbable musings about alien invasions of planet Earth just don't know Dick.

edit on 20-2-2013 by Erongaricuaro because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 20 2013 @ 02:53 AM
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Originally posted by Erongaricuaro
Those who regard science-fiction as nothing more than absurd cardboard pulp fantasy about gruesome space monsters and improbable musings about alien invasions just don't know Dick.

edit on 20-2-2013 by Erongaricuaro because: (no reason given)


Too true...I'm often tempted to swing towards Terence McKenna (and others..pkd himself said as much to) notion that the imagination itself is non-local in nature, but i don't want to derail this thread into a discussion on a topic as ridiculously confusing and paradoxical as quantum mechanics hahah. Its just hard to account for its free-flowing complexity and originality and all of the impossible things associated with abstract functions of consciousness without invoking some sort of non-local field interaction.



posted on Feb, 20 2013 @ 03:45 AM
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reply to post by bobwilson
 


Thanks. I will check out the link, of course. Just to be fair I will admit Valis was not really a favorite of mine, though all his work is dear to me. PKD is my favorite author. There are many other writers I enjoy but his works remain in a class to themselves with no other vessels travelling in that sector, in my opinion. My choice of favorite novel I suppose remains 3 Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch, a rather mundane selection alongside Valis, to be sure, but more in line with the reality limits I allow myself to tread within. It can be dangerous to travel much further beyond those points, as evidenced in Valis, but I will leave that terrain to the more youthful and adventuresome than myself.

There is no synchronicity to ponder in this, just coincidence, but at the age of 53 when he died it was that time in my life that I cast off the comfortable shackles of my American experience to take a job with the Tijuana Fur and Dye Company but instead opted to retire in said country at that same age, though do remain a part-time consultant on such subject matter. Sorry, shameless self-promotion.

edit on 20-2-2013 by Erongaricuaro because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 20 2013 @ 04:46 AM
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reply to post by bobwilson
 
I've been a fan of PKD for years. Back when I was at uni, I read through all his books in the library. Despite the fame of his others books (and movies like Blade Runner), it was Time Out of Joint that flipped my imagination. It was written in 1959 and just seemed too weird and modern...like The Matrix or something.


As the novel opens, its protagonist Ragle Gumm believes that he lives in the year 1959 in a quiet American suburb. His unusual profession consists of repeatedly winning the cash prize in a local newspaper competition called, "Where Will The Little Green Man Be Next?". Gumm's 1959 has some differences from ours: the Tucker car is in production, AM/FM radios are scarce to non-existent and Marilyn Monroe is a complete unknown. As the novel opens, strange things begin to happen to Gumm. A soft-drink stand disappears, replaced by a small slip of paper with the words "SOFT-DRINK STAND" printed on it in block letters. Intriguing little pieces of the real 1959 turn up: a magazine article on Marilyn Monroe, a telephone book with non-operational exchanges listed and radios hidden away in someone else's house. People with no apparent connection to Gumm, including military pilots using aircraft transceivers, refer to him by name.


There was definitely something peculiar about PKD and the way his mind worked. He believed he was tapped into VALIS and that his ideas weren't all his own. In that way he had parallels with current guys like Whitley Streiber. The thing for me is that I can actually accept the possibility that his wild ideas came from Elsewhere. If anything, his ideas appear to have been from some fictional future as they apply more to our world now than to his world in the 50s and 60s.

Our modern world accepts two forms of thinking - good and bad. So we have mental disorders and mental illness when 'sanity' is the way of thinking we are supposed to prefer. However, there's a place in this world for functionally insane or high-functioning mental illness. People who are not classically sane in any society and yet they add to the fabric of our cultures with everything they create. PKD was one of these people in my opinion.



posted on Feb, 20 2013 @ 05:12 AM
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reply to post by bobwilson
 


you know I think sci-fi writers do have some sort of tap onto a source knowledge. I agree with that.

Take for example battle star galactica. It is in a micro story, the suspected history of mankind. Those ancient stories we piece together and suppose that they all allude to what galactica offers. That our founders were what we ignorantly called "gods". That they were at war with each other at some point. That their "magic" was technological in nature, and that they came here and had a restart to their civilization and seeded us with ours.



edit on 20-2-2013 by zedVSzardoz because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 20 2013 @ 08:27 AM
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And along with that do you guys remember the story of PKD writing a piece, and years later discovering that he had described characters and events he would later encounter in real life? Something about a gas station...I can't remember which it was off hand but i believe it was in flow my tears (which i read many years ago)
edit on 20-2-2013 by bobwilson because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 20 2013 @ 09:50 AM
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reply to post by bobwilson
 

deoxy.org...
It takes him a while to get there but he talks about the events you refer to.
edit on 20-2-2013 by ErgoTheConclusion because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 20 2013 @ 10:13 AM
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awesome, thanks!



posted on Feb, 22 2013 @ 07:46 AM
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I'm currently finishing up 'That Father Thing', an anthology of PKD short stories...all, obviously, excellent, but The Golden Man really struck a chord with me so I looked up what Dick had to say about it. His perspective totally ran at a tangent to my own, which didn't surprise me overly, often with his writing I get the impression that he didn't truly understand what it was that he was 'seeing'. Much like any prophet, he reports, and like with The Golden Man, what he reports is often frightening or unnerving to him, but now, some fifty odd years after he wrote it, things having progressed, it has a greater, contemporous meaning, that he perhaps could not entirely comprehend. In that way, he is in a sense, The Golden Man himself considering numerous 'scenes' of possible futures, poor Dick though had to deal with the distortions of symbolism and linguistics, but then if he had, how would he have communicated with us in the future?

McKenna, though I am hugely admiring of Food of the Gods, is no PKD. McKenna seeks to create a framework for a revised belief system based upon his own subjective experiences which naturally limits his perspective. Though far less judgemental and elitist than R Gordon Wasson, he belongs in that same genre of ethnobotanists who seek to qualify ethnobotanicals as the source of 'original' religious experience rather than giving credit to the preparation and selection of the correct human host, such as PKD represents. Everyone can imbibe and experience, but that does not make everyone who does a Shaman. In that context, having studied the apostle Thomas, it is clear why Dick felt such a strong bond of affinity with him in particular.



posted on Feb, 23 2013 @ 12:47 PM
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Interesting analysis. Have you ever smoked dmt? Reason i ask is because often people don't understand terence until they're been "there". He wasn't trying to create a belief system- he actually hoped people would question what he said and think for themselves without sticking to any belief system, even commenting that a mckenna-cult would be the dumbest thing anyone could ever do after listening to him.

I love both pkd and terence and i just don't feel the urge to ever really compare them, but there is some remarkable similarities in how the 'mystery' permeated into both of their lives in baffling ways.



posted on Feb, 23 2013 @ 08:19 PM
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Originally posted by cavrac
I am a Dick Head, I have read most of his books, and love them.

I have no doubt that he was some type of genius.

I tried to read The Exegesis of Philip K. Dick but could not really get through it, it was a little too deep for me, and made me feel dizzy.






I am about half way through his Exegesis, and it definitely left its impressions on my mental state as well. Haven't read it for quite awhile now. It seems to vacillate between schizophrenic to confusing to deeply thought provoking and insightful.

One thing i really like about the book is that Dick periodically will admit that maybe it is all madness and questions himself at times. That to me speaks to his rigorousness in regards to intellectual honesty.

If you look up the Ralph Nader library there are a number of PKD's books in full available to read online, including Valis, which was written around the time of his breakthrough/breakdown/mystical experience.

Here is the link to 'Flow My Tears..' but there are several others. www.naderlibrary.com...

And here's an interesting segment of a speech he gave. Speaks to how deep down the rabbit hole the man traveled. The last minute is where it gets interesting, but you may want to watch it all for context.


I've read most of his novels, some of his short stories. One of my favorite authors and is an interesting figure to me in general.

If you want to read one of the most monumental and multi-layered synchronicities i have ever come across that Dick experienced regarding his novel 'Flow My Tears, the Policman Said' check it out here.

www.abovetopsecret.com...

I'm not one to link my own threads, but i quoted it in it's entirety there and it is certainly worth a look. If you haven't heard the story before, Dick shares the account in his own words taken from the transcript of a speech he gave at some University in 1978. It is the latter half of the first post, and continues on the second post. One of the most incredible 'coincidences' i have ever come across. Truly remarkable, assuming he is being truthful, which I personally believe he is.

You can find the link to the full article there as well.
edit on 23-2-2013 by Runciter33 because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 24 2013 @ 11:06 AM
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Thanks for sharing that, and for the links. The synchronicities (or coincidences? :p ) are indeed one of the most fascinating aspects of reality that I've ever encountered. People like PKD and McKenna seem to encountered this 'cosmic giggle' aspect of reality in more bizarre ways than most.

Essentially i think everyone encounters synchronicity to some degree, most just don't notice it or brush it off as coincidence. This is why recording them can be so useful. We really don't feel the weight of all thats happened very well. Our memory isn't as good as we imagine. It always baffles me what i've learned, only to relearn several times without realizing it. And when it comes to synchronicities, i think most people would be utterly baffled if they were given a movie or journal that contains all the synchronicities they've ever experiences or witnessed. No philosopher worth his salt didn't keep a journal.






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