“Psychedelic experience is only a glimpse of genuine mystical insight, but a glimpse which can be matured and deepened by the various ways of meditation in which drugs are no longer necessary or useful. If you get the message, hang up the phone. For psychedelic drugs are simply instruments, like microscopes, telescopes, and telephones. The biologist does not sit with eye permanently glued to the microscope, he goes away and works on what he has seen…”
— Alan Watts, (Joyous Cosmology Prologue, 2nd ed. 1970).
Came across this quote the other day (introduced to Alan Watts by HE). I just love it and want to share it with everyone. I have not found a better take on drug use. And it excites me because I have just started meditating daily and feel that it is the true route to enlightenment. Until now my take has always been, Drugs give us keys to doors we are not yet able to open. Now I will use Alan Watts quote.
Talking about acid and the Haight Ashburys Ken Kesey said; Acid opens a door in your mind, once it has been opened there is no point in going through it again and again. If I trust anyone’s opinion on the matter, I trust Ken Kesey: He is Acid.
I have always thought looking for enlightenment through drugs is a slippery and dangerous mistress. It is true you may discover something profound on drugs, you may also just laugh a lot. True enlightenment comes from looking inward with a clear head. Nothing against psychedelics though, fantastic stuff. Don’t expect them to solve any problems though, just enjoy the experience for what it is. That’s what I think anyway.
@chekovchameleon, What if to say the person who took acid had a bad time? Is that door still opened with no point of going back through it again?
Do you know what I am asking? Is it open because a person took it or would it require to take it and experience it in a good sense?
Agree about acid, it’s great but you get to a point where it can’t teach you any more. Once you’ve hit that point, it’s best not to do it again. It can completely reprogram you, and if you get some bad programming it will stick with you. The only way to remove it is to do more acid, which risks throwing you deeper into a bad place. I should take my own advice. :-)
Ketamine though, ketamine’s like a spiritual cleanse and I can’t see a time where a bit of K now and again won’t be good for me.
I’m a reasonable amount of experience with meditation, taught from some brilliant Buddhist teachers. I had reached a road block in my practice with using meditation as a healing tool. I have been sorting out all of the the mental trauma from having an alcohol and drug problem and the triggers for it in the first place. I do still believe that coming out of the deep hole of addiction can make you a stronger person than if you had never had it. I have to sort out my delusions otherwise my way of dealing with them (drink and drugs) would have killed me.
I had lost all belief in myself (because I felt weak that I could not handle modern life at 22) and no longer thought I was capable of achieving anything I aspired to in life.
After exhausting my meditation and alcohol counseling, I used magic mushrooms to help me break cyclic, damaging thought patterns and see behind the ego telling me I had failed. It was the best choice I had ever made.
I had done quite a lot of psychedelics in my time but never with the intention of using them as a tool to confront damaging thoughts and behaviors. Using what they taught me in meditation and mindful thinking I have turned a corner. For the first time in years I have self belief about me as a person and my capabilities.
But it’s a tool – not the answer. It awakened part of me I had not known for years so now I can use the lessons learned from the experiences.
@ojai, Well yes the door is still open, weather the experience is bad or good is completely dependent on the persons mind at that time. But it I don’t think Kesey meant that you should only take acid once, rather that if you keep going through that door it may become harder to close, or that you be perhaps exist permanently beyond the door.
The “good and bad” are just names we put on our experiences. Acid allows you further access to your mind, if you don’t like what you find there it doesn’t change the fact that you have opened the door to that part of your mind. I do think however if you have had a bad experience on acid you should perhaps meditate on it and try it again to see if your experience is better.
Drugs provide a temporary knowing through the level of neural harmony they bring, this is what you train in meditation. Stop studying concepts. Concepts are something an enlightened mind creates because it can, nothing to grasp onto to.
Your own concepts will come, all relevant to you by being aware of when and why you become unconscious.
Don’t turn meditation into some seeking session or you go no where.
I really think something happens when on lsd that we can’t quite grasp. I’ve only done it about 5 times and each one was better, with the last time being quite uplifting and introspective during the comedown. mid trip was full of waves of what I can only describe as going in and out. The word frequency came up alot in my head. Maybe dimension blurring? brain frequency change?
Alan Watt’s is completely right on that “once you get the message, hang up the phone” line. I recently started to experiment with what I consider to be “acceptable drugs” such as mdma, shrooms, etc. and 2 days ago I believe I went over board. The trip went good and and I was in control of my mind and the next second I’m in full flight from reality fear (I thought I went insane and was going to be sent to an asylum) and I was barely in control of my behavior. The vastness of our infinite reality crashed over me like a tidal wave and I ended up on my bed, in the fetal position, completely at the mercy of all the shrooms I ate. To make a long story short, things got pretty bad, but I ended up regaining control of my thoughts and used them to my advantage. I ended up having a good time, but it taught me to respect them and never to abuse them.
@deepfriedfunk, thanks for the comment on the shrooms. It made me think of medical journals that came out about this time last year proving that Mushrooms could instantly resolve issues of depression and anxiety. Clearly this may not be a recommended course of treatment for everyone. But speaking from my own experience using the drug– it does provide a version of a different self, a new perspective.
Makes me want to do Mushrooms again…find a forest somewhere and bliss out.
Oh and I wanted to share a link: