SPACE TIME CONTINUUM
WITH TERENCE MCKENNA
Dreamtime was a multi media event recorded live on February 26th/27th
1993 at the Transmission theater,
The Archaic Revival
is ending, because the dominator culture has led the human species into
a blind alley. And as the inevitable
chaostrophe approaches, people look for metaphors and answers. Every time a culture gets into trouble, it casts
itself back into the past looking for the last sane moment it ever knew.
And the last sane moment we ever knew was on the plains of
does this matter? It matters because it chose that the way out
is back, and that the future is a forward escape into the past. This is what the psychedelic experience means.
Its a doorway out of history and into
the wiring under the board in eternity. And I tell you this because if the community
understands what it is that holds it together, the community will be
better able to streamline itself for flight into hyperspace. Because what we need is a new myth. What we need is a new true story that tells
us where were going in the universe.
And that true story is that the ego is a product of pathology
and that when psilocybin is regularly part of the human experience,
the ego is suppressed. And the suppression of the ego means the defeat
of the dominators, the materialists, the product peddlers.
Psychedelics return us to the inner worth of the self, to the importance of feeling immediate experience. And nobody can sell that to you and nobody can buy it from you, so the dominator culture is not interested in the felt presence of immediate experience. But thats what holds the community together. And as we break out of the silly myths of science and the infantile obsessions of the marketplace, what we discover through the psychedelic experience is that in the body-- in the body-- there are Niagara of beauty, alien beauty, alien dimensions that are part of the self, the richest part of life. I think of going to the grave without having a psychedelic experience, like going to the grave without having sex. It means that you never figured out what it was all about. The mystery is in the body, and the way the body works itself into nature.
What the archaic revival means is shamanism, ecstasy, orgiastic sexuality, and the defeat
of the three enemies of the people, and the three enemies of the people
are pechemony, monogamy, and monotony.
And if you get them on the run, you have the dominators sweating,
folks. Because that means that youre getting it all
reconnected, and get it all reconnected means putting aside the idea
of separateness and self-definition through thing fetish.
Getting it all connected means tapping into the Gaian mind. And the Gaian mind is what were
calling the psychedelic experience.
Its an experience of the living fact of the entelechy of the
planet, and without that experience we wander in a desert of bogus ideologies,
but with that experience, the compass of the self can be set. And thats the idea, that were figuring out how
to reset the compass of the self, through community, through ecstatic
dance, through psychedelics, intelligence-- intelligence... this is
what we have to have to make the forward escape into hyperspace.
so, that was like an introduction, ha ha!
Now for some preaching to the choir on the subject of: How come it is that the further in you go, the
bigger it gets? I remember the
very, very first time I smoked DMT.
It was sort of a benchmark, you might say.
And I remember that this friend of mine that always got there
first, visited me with this little glass pipe,
and this stuff which looked like orange mothballs.
And since I was a graduate of Dr. Hoffmans, I figured there were
no surprises. So the only question I asked was how long does
it last? And he said, About
five minutes. So, I did it. And...
There was uh, something like a flower. Like a chrysanthemum in orange and yellow that sort of spinning. Spinning. And then, it was like I was pushed from behind and I fell through the chrysanthemum into another place that didnt seem like a state of mind. It seemed like another place. And what was going on in this place (aside from the tastefully soffited indirect lighting and the crawling hallucinations along the domed wall), what was happening was that there were a lot of beings in there, a lot of what I call self-transforming machine elves. Sort of like jeweled basketballs all dribbling their way toward me. And if they had faces they wouldve been grinning at me, but they didnt have faces. And they assured me that they loved me, and they told me not to be amazed, not to give way to astonishment. And so I watched them, even though I wondered if maybe I hadn't really done it this time!
And what they were doing,
was they were making objects come into existence by singing them into
which looked like Faberge eggs from Mars, morphing themselves with
Mandaean alphabetical structures. They
looked like the concrescence of linguistic intentionality put through
a kind of hyperdimensional transform into three-dimensional space. And these little machines offered themselves
to me. And I realized when
I looked at them, that if I could bring just one of these little
trinkets back, nothing would ever be quite the same again.
Somehow, I was finding out that thing, that
you cheerfully assume you cant find out...
but it felt like I was finding out.
And it felt... and then I cant remember
what it felt like because the little self-transforming tikes interrupted
me and said, Dont think about it. Dont think about who we are-- think about doing
what were doing. Do it! Do it now. Do
it! Speaking in Tongues And what they
meant was: use your voice to make an object.
And as I understood I felt a bubble kind of grow inside of
me. And I watched these little elf tikes jumping
in and out of my chest (they liked to do that to reassure you),
and they said, Do it! And
I felt language rise up in me that was unhooked from English and
I began to speak like this:
And I wondered then what it all meant, and why
it felt so good (if it didnt mean anything). And I thought about it a few years, actually,
and I decided, you know, that meaning and language are two different
things. And that what the alien
voice in the psychedelic experience wants to reveal is the syntactical
nature of reality. That 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 make of it, whatever you
moi dea doi phegenheggo...
And one of the things that I learned about DMT, was that, if you ever had it, even just once, then you can have a dream. And in this dream somebody will pull out a little glass pipe, and then it will happen. It will happen just like the real thing. Because theres a button somewhere inside each and every one of us that gives you a look into the other side. And thats the button that resets the compass that tells you where you want to sail. Good luck!
Hello, all right. Have you ever noticed how, um, theres this quality to reality, which comes and goes and kind of, ebbs and flows. And nobody ever mentions it, or has a name for it. Except that some people call it a bad hair day or they say, Things are really weird recently. And I think we never notice it and we never talk about it because were embedded in a culture that expects us to believe that all times are the same, and that your bank account doesnt fluctuate, except according to the vicissitudes of your own existence. In other words, every moment is expected to be the same, and yet this isnt what we experience. And so what I noticed was that, running through reality is the ebb and flow of novelty. And some days, and some years, and some centuries are very novel indeed. And some aint. And they come and go on all scales, differently, interweaving, resonantly. And this is what time seems to be.
And science has overlooked this, this most salient of facts about nature, that nature is a novelty-conserving engine. And that from the very first moments of that most improbable Big Bang, novelty has been conserved, because in the very beginning there was only an ocean of energy pouring into the universe. There were no planets, no stars, no molecules, no atoms, no magnetic fields. There was only an ocean of free electrons. And then, time passed. And the universe cooled. And novel structures crystallized out of disorder. First, atoms. Atoms of hydrogen and helium. Aggregating into stars. And at the center of those stars, the temperature and the pressure created something which had never been seen before, which was: fusion. And fusion, cooking in the hearts of stars, brought forth more novelty. Heavy elements, iron, carbon, forvalent carbon. And as time passed, there not only then, elemental systems, but because of the presence of carbon and the lower temperatures in the universe, molecular structures and out of molecules come simple subsets of organisms, the genetic machinery for transcripting information, aggregating into membranes, always binding novelty, always condensing time, always building and conserving upon complexity and always faster and faster and faster... and then, we come to ourselves.
And where do we fit into all of this? Five million years ago, we were an animal of some sort. Where will we be five million years from tonight? What we represent is not a sideshow, or an epiphenomenon, or an ancillary something-or-other on the edge of nowhere. What we represent is the nexus of concressent novelty that has been moving itself together, complexifying itself, folding itself in upon itself, for billions and billions of years. There is, so far as we know, nothing more advanced than what is sitting behind your eyes. The human neocortex is the most densely ramified and complexified structure in the known universe. We are the cutting edge of organismic transformation of matter in this cosmos.
And this has been going on for awhile. Since the discovery of fire, since the discovery of language, but now, and by now, I mean for the last 10,000 years, weve been into something new: not genetic information, not genetic mutation, not natural selection, butb epigenetic activity. Writing, theatre, poetry, dance, art, tattooing, body-piercing, and philosophy. And these things have accelerated the ingression into novelty so that we have become an idea-excreting force in nature that builds temples, builds cities, builds machines, social engines, plans, and spreads over the earth, into space; into the microphysical domain; into the macrophysical domain.
We, who five million years were animals, can kindle in our deserts and if necessary upon the cities of our enemies, the very energy which lights the stars at night.Now, something peculiar is going on here. Something is calling us out of nature and sculpting us in its own image. And the confrontation with this something is now not so far away. This is what the impending apparent end of everything actually means. It means that the denouement of human history is about to occur and is about to be revealed as a universal process of concressing and expressing novelty that is now going to become so intensified that it is going to flow over into another dimension.You can feel it. You can feel it in your own dreams. You can feel it in your own trips. You can feel that were approaching the cusp of a catastrophe, and that beyond that cusp, we are unrecognizable to ourselves.
The wave of novelty that has rolled unbroken since the birth of the universe has now focused and coalesced itself in our species. And if it seems unlikely to you that the world is about to transform itself, then think of it this way: Think of a pond and think of how, if the surface of the pond begins to boil, thats the signal that some enormous protean form is about to break the surface of the pond and reveal itself. Human history is the boiling of the pond surface of ordinary biology. We are flesh, which has been caught in the grip of some kind of an attractor that lies ahead of us in time, and that is sculpting to its ends. Speaking to us, through psychedelics, through visions, through culture and technology.
Consciousness, the language-forming capacity
in our species is propelling itself forward, as though it
were going to shed the monkey body and leap into some extra-surreal
space that surrounds, but that we cannot currently see.
And this is where the psychedelic shaman comes in. Because I believe that what we really contact through psychedelics is a kind of hyperspace, and from that hyperspace, we look down on both the past and the future and we anticipate the end. And a shaman is someone who has seen the end. And therefore is a trickster, because you dont worry if youve seen the end. If you know how it comes out, you go back and you take your place in the play and you let it all roll on without anxiety. This is what boundary dissolution means; it means nothing less than the anticipation of the end-state of human history. A return to the archaic mode, a rediscovery of the orgiastic freedom of the African grasslands of 20,000 years ago. A techno-escape into a future that looks more like the past than the future, because materialism, consumerism, product fetishism, all of these things will be eliminated and technology will become nanotechnology and disappear from our physical presence. If-- if—we have the dream. If we allow the wave of novelty to propel us toward the creativity that is inimicable to the human condition.This is what were talking about here-- psychedelics as a catalyst to the human imagination, psychedelics as a catalyst for language, because what cannot be said, cannot be created by the community.
So what we need then, is the forced evolution of language, and the way to do that is to go back to agents that created language in the very first place. And that means, the psychedelic plants, the Gaian Logos, and the mysterious beckoning extraterrestrial minds beyond. Hooking ourselves back up, into the chakras of the hierarchy of nature, turning ourselves over to the mind of the Totally Other that created us and brought us forth out of animal organization. We are somehow part of the planetary destiny. How well we do determines how well the experiment of life on earth does. Because we have become the cutting edge of that experiment. We define it, and we hold in our hands the power to make or to break it.
This is not a dress rehearsal for the apocalypse. This is not a pseudo-millennium. This is the real thing, folks. This is not a test. This is the last chance before things become so dissipated that there is no chance for cohesiveness. We can use the calendar as a club. We can make the millennium an occasion for establishing an authentic human civilization, overcoming the dominator paradigm, dissolving boundaries through psychedelics, recreating a sexuality not based on monotheism, monogamy, and monotony. All these things are possible. If we can understand the overarching metaphor which holds it all together, which is the celebration of mind as play, the celebration of love as a genuine social value in the community. This is what they have suppressed so long, this is why they are so afraid of the psychedelics, because they understand that once you touch the inner core of your own and someone elses being, you cant be led into thing fetishism and consumerism.
The message of psychedelics is that culture can be reengineered as a set of emotional values, rather than products. This is terrifying news. And if we are able to make this point, we can pull back, we can pull back and we can transcend. Nine times in the last million years, the ice has ground south from the poles, pushing human populations ahead of it, and those people didnt fuck up. Why should we, then? We are all survivors. We are the inheritors of a million years of striving for the Unspeakable. And now, with the engines of technology in our hands, we ought to be able to reach out and actually exteriorize the human soul at the end of time, invoke it into existence like a UFO, and open the violent doorway into hyperspace and walk through it, out of profane history and into the world beyond the grave, beyond shamanism, beyond the end of history, into the galactic millennium that has beckoned to us for millions of years across space and time. This is the moment. A planet brings forth an opportunity like this only once in its lifetime. And we are ready, and we are poised, and as a community we are ready to move into it, to claim it, to make it our own. Its there-- go for it! And thank you!