Friday, February 29, 2008

All things Terence McKenna Online

For all of you who miss Terence McKenna. His ideas, philosophy, spirit, love, humor, intellect, writing, workshops and lectures. I wanted to assemble all my favorite sources for all things McKenna Online all in one place, right here on my blog. His message is important to the future of our species and insuring it is readily available to all is of great importance.

First off, if you don't do so all ready. Become a subscriber to The Psychedelic Salon hosted by Lorenzo. He features some really good McKenna talks and keeps everyone up to date with whats happening in our community. Be sure to look over the past episodes. So far 66 of them involve Terence.

Here are some of the sites that feature Terence McKenna (and related) Digital Media files:
Then there are the websites:
If I am missing any good sites or links. Please share them in the comments of this blog entry. May the spirit of Terence McKenna reside online for all the world until the eschaton and beyond.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Spiders On Drugs: Funny Video & NASA experiment

Now that we have all had a good laugh watching the funny skit. For a more serious study about Spiders on Drugs please see the following:

Made available online by: Trey Dunn &
Source: LIFE magazine on 22 March 1954
Original concept by: Darcy Brooker and Melanie King

Scientists at the United States National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) have turned their attention from the mysteries of the cosmos to a more esoteric area of research: what happens when you get a spider stoned. Their experiments have shown that common house spiders spin their webs in different ways according to the psychotropic drug they have been given. Nasa scientists believe the research demonstrates that web-spinning spiders can be used to test drugs because the more toxic the chemical, the more deformed was the web.

* Spiders on marijuana made a reasonable stab at spinning webs but appeared to lose concentration about half-way through.

* Those on Benzedrine - "speed" - spin their webs "with great gusto, but apparently without much planning leaving large holes", according to New Scientist magazine.

* Caffeine, one of the most common drugs consumed by Britons in soft drinks, tea and coffee, makes spiders incapable of spinning anything better than a few threads strung together at random.

* On chloral hydrat, an ingredient of sleeping pills, spiders "drop off before they even get started".

* See what happens to their mental state.

Just say NO Spider Web

Web created while exposed to Mescaline\Peyote

Web created while exposed to LSD

Web created while exposed to Marijuana

Web created exposed to Caffeine

Web created exposed to Benzedrine

Web created exposed to Chloral Hydrat
(sleeping pills)

Monday, February 25, 2008

Nokia expects real-life 'Transformers' in seven years

By Tim Conneally, BetaNews
February 25, 2008, 6:03 PM

On display at the Museum of Modern Art in New York from February 24 to May 12 is a nanotechnology-equipped concept mobile device.

The Morph is the result of an ongoing partnership between Nokia and the University of Cambridge, and illustrates their ideas of how future devices will look and function. It's a multipurpose unit with context-dependent shape; so whatever its intended use may be at the time, it can be structurally modified to fit the user's needs.

Nokia's partnership with the University of Cambridge began in 2007 and encompasses different projects in several areas. While these initial developments come from the nanoscience center and electrical division of the engineering department at Cambridge, other groups will be included in upcoming projects.

Nokia, in typically forward-thinking fashion, said it expects certain features shown in the Morph demo to be integrated into handheld devices within seven years.

Friday, February 15, 2008

John Lash - Gnosticism & Abrahamic Religion

John Lash

Gnosticism & Abrahamic Religion

Download MP3: HERE

Research and author John Lamb Lash joins us to discuss his book Not in His Image: Gnostic Vision, Sacred Ecology, and the Future of Belief. We begin to talk about Gnosticism, the origins of the Gnostic Texts, who've done the translation? We move on talking about the Abrahamic Religions: Judaism, Christianity and Islam. We focus on Christianity and talk about the Saviour Complex and God's need for a Sacrifice. Topics Discussed: Religion, Manipulation, Elaine Pagels, Nag Hammâdi, Translation Problems, Dead Sea Scrolls, The Gnostics, Yahweh; The schizoid God and much more.

A continuation of this interview is available to subscibers of Red Ice Creations.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Dr. Timothy Leary: 1964 lecture on How To Use Your Head

The Psychedelic Salon
Subscribe: FREE
Download: MP3
PCs - Right click, select option
Macs - Ctrl-Click, select option

This episode of the Psychedelic Salon features Dr. Timothy Leary. kicking off the 1960's psychedelic revolution in his famous November 29, 1964 Cooper Union address. The first time the American public learns about the mind expanding drug called LSD.

[All quotes below are by Dr. Timothy Leary]

"You have to go out of your mind to use your head."

"Now, in taking this eccentric position, of taking the brain seriously, you run the risk of getting out of touch with your professional colloquies."

"Now from the standpoint of the strategy of the genetic material, every living species is simply a creative solution to a packaging problem."

"This [early imprinting of young ducklings on orange basketballs instead of mother ducks] is both funny and tragic, because it raises the question, in the case of the human being, what accidental orange basketball have you and I been exposed to early in life?"

"At times it seems to us that one of the functions of the mind is to rationalize and protect an accidental early imprint."

"We suggest that psychedelic drugs may be seen as chemical agents which temporarily suspend your old imprints."

"The thing which excites us these days is the corollary concept of psychedelic RE-imprinting."

"I think that anyone who doesn’t experience, at some moment during their psychedelic sessions, and intense awe-full fear has been cheated by their psychiatrist or their bootlegger."

"LSD is the most powerful aphrodisiac ever known to man."

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Caffeine: A User's Guide to Getting Optimally Wired

From: / Cognitive Neuroscience
By Chris Chatham

Caffeine is the most widely used stimulant in the world, but few use it to maximal advantage. Get optimally wired with these tips.

1) Consume in small, frequent amounts.
Between 20-200mg per hour may be an optimal dose for cognitive function. Caffeine crosses the blood-brain barrier quickly (owing to its lipid solubility) although it can take up to 45 minutes for full ingestion through the gastro-intestinal tract. Under normal conditions, this remains stable for around 1 hour before gradually clearing in the following 3-4 hours depending on a variety of factors.

A landmark 2004 study showed that small hourly doses of caffeine can support extended wakefulness, potentially by counteracting the homeostatic sleep pressure, which builds slowly across the day and acts preferentially on the prefrontal cortex (an area of the brain thought responsible for executive and "higher" cognitive functions). At doses of 600mg, caffeine's effects on cognitive performance are often comparable to those of modafinil, a best-of-class nootropic.

2) Play to your cognitive strengths while wired.
Caffeine may increase the speed with which you work, may decrease attentional lapses, and may even benefit recall - but is less likely to benefit more complex cognitive functions, and may even hurt others. Plan accordingly (and preferably prior to consuming caffeine!) Caffeine has long been known to improve vigilance, but work focusing on its more more cognitive effects - through interactions with the "frontal task network" - show less clear effects.

In tests of lateral prefrontal function, caffeine only remediates some fatigue-related symptoms. For example, in a random number generation task (a commonly-used measure of prefrontal function), caffeine increased the quantity of numbers generated to pre-fatigue levels, but did not significantly affect more demanding aspects of performance: caffeine didn't affect the likelihood of subjects generating numbers outside the acceptable range, or their tendency to perseverate on particular numbers.

Another study indicates the same is true of caffeine's effect on the medial prefrontal cortex. In that study, sleep deprivation-related decrements on the Iowa Gambling Task were not mitigated by caffeine.

The Stroop task, which a wealth of neuroimaging shows is related to functioning of the anterior cingulate, may also benefit from caffeine, but this effect may also be due to general speed improvements rather than those of cognitive control specifically.

(Interestingly, it appears that none of these studies follow guideline #1 - and there are hints in the second one that subject's performance might have shown significant improvements if another dose of caffeine had been provided about half-way through the task).
Recall from memory may be improved by caffeine (here and here), possibly due to enhancements in memory encoding rather than retrieval per se. Another study shows caffeine can actually impair estimates of "memory scanning" speed (in the Sternberg paradigm), so the failure of many studies to find recall-related effects of caffeine may reflect a speed-accuracy tradeoff at the time of retrieval.

3) Play to caffeine's strengths.
Caffeine's effects can be maximized or minimized depending on what else is in your system at the time. The beneficial effects of caffeine may be most pronounced in conjunction with sugar. For example, one factor analytic study has shown caffeine-glucose cocktails provide benefits to cognition not seen with either alone.

Some flavonoids (such as soy) may act in the same way as caffeine - i.e., through adenosine receptor antagonism - in particular galangin, genistein, and hispidol. Evidence showing that markers of caffeine metabolism are slowed by flavonoids might suggest that ingestion of flavonoids would enhance the effects of caffeine - some studies show grapefruit juice might keep caffeine levels in the bloodstream high for longer, though others have found no such effect (thanks to commenter Matt McIntosh for this latter reference).

Caffeine's effects might be masked by green tea extract, Kava Kava or St. John's Wort - all of which contain theanine and are associated with subjective feelings of relaxation - but other preliminary evidence indicates the opposite effect: theanine might actually potentiate the benefits of caffeine on some tasks (reported in longer format here). Similarly, nicotine may speed the metabolism of caffeine.

Because caffeine is a competitive antagonist for adenosine 1 & 2a primarily at striatal sites, it may also selectively increase the efficacy of D2 receptors, given evidence that D2 depleted mice show reduced effects of caffeination. According to theoretical computational models of D2 receptor activity in the striatum, this should increase cortico-thalamic excitability. It will be important for future work to examine caffeine's effect on tasks thought to require NoGo pathway activity. A variety of other chemicals may work on the A2 receptor in similar (SCH 58261, ZM 241385, CSC, KF17837) or opposing ways (CGS 21680, APEC, 2HE-NECA).

4) Know when to stop - and when to start again.
Although you may not grow strongly tolerant to caffeine, you can become dependent on it and suffer withdrawal symptoms. Balance these concerns with the cognitive and health benefits associated with caffeine consumption - and appropriately timed resumption.
Long-term ingestion of large quantities of caffeine (by way of coffee) is associated with a variety of health benefits - not only cognitive enhancements but also reduction in risk for type 2 diabetes (c.f.), Alzheimer's and Parkinson's . These beneficial effects may be related to the neuroprotective role of adenosine.

However, there are some suggestions that caffeine also has adverse effects (mostly cardiovascular, which might be balanced by flavonoids - see guideline #3). And some people just don't like the thought of cultivating an addiction - or the spectre of withdrawal symptoms.
Some evidence indicates high heritability for caffeine addition (note: this is based on interviews of twins) and others are advocating the recognition of caffeine addiction as a bona fide mental disorder. Withdrawal symptoms can onset within 12 to 24 hours of caffeine consumption and last between 2 and 9 days.

There are more cognitive concerns here as well. For one, caffeine probably follows the Yerkes-Dodson law, in which a moderate dose is superior to too little or too much. In addition, there are well-established cognitive effects where recall is best when it matches the context of encoding - so if you're caffeinated when you study for the test, you better be caffeinated when you take it.

5) Finding good sources of caffeine
Despite the huge variety of sources of caffeine - including caffeinated soap, candy, and of course chocolate - the optimal use of caffeine is likely to involve small, hourly doses along with some cardioprotective agent. Given the high solubility of caffeine, absorption time should not be an issue (but if for some reason it is, try gum). Otherwise, why not enjoy a cup of green tea (coffee-flavored, if you must), as the Chinese have for nearly 5000 years? It's hard to come by a better longitudinal study than that.

Monday, February 11, 2008

John Lash - Paradise Denied, Entheogenic Revelation: The Paris Eadwine Psalter

Entheogenic Revelation: The Paris Eadwine Psalter
By: John Lash

PARADISE DENIED was intended to be the first complete account written for mainstream readers of the entheogenic theory of religion, or Wasson thesis – so named after R. Gordon Wasson who proposed it in 1968. The thesis states that the primal religious experience of humanity was a visionary trance induced by the ingestion of psychoactive plants. This direct revelation of Divinity was ecstatic religion as it existed long before any doctrines, rites, rules, hierarchy, or institutions.

As I originally conceived it, PARADISE DENIED was not intended to plead for or against the Wasson thesis. My aim was to challenge the longstanding taboo on ecstatic religious experience, explain why this taboo was imposed in the first place, and consider the massive pathological impact of forbidding access to the divine dimension of the natural world. To do this, I set out to define the thesis, trace its development, its role in the psychedelic movement of the 1960s, its current ramifications, and let the evidence speak for itself. And the evidence is spectacular. The centerpiece of entheogenic theory in my proposed book was the Paris Eadwine Psalter, BNF Latin MS 8846, a rare illuminated book of the 12th Century. Biblical scenes in the psalter depict in botanically distinct form the “forbidden fruit,” blue-staining psilocybe mushrooms sprouting from the Tree of Knowledge, and other varieties of psychoactive fungi.

The above image is one of twelve sections from a full-page panel of the Eadwine MS. The psalter opens with five such panels, lavish in detail and color, and there are three other full-page panels as well, though not all of them show entheobotanical imagery. About forty other images in the 357-page MS repeat the motif of the paradisical tree, often shown in the explicit, literal form of a blue-staining mushroom.

In one panel Jesus presides over four botanically distinct types of psycho-active mushrooms, including those that stain blue (right). This startling image, in which the Christian Savior appears to invite the faithful to partake in a sacramental mushroom mass, has appeared on some entheogenic sites on the Internet, wrongly identified as belonging to the Canterbury Psalter.

To my knowledge, there exist three closely related psalters dated around 1150 CE. The Great Canterbury Psalter (Anglo-Catalan Psalter), also kept in Paris, is sometimes identified with the Paris Eadwine Psalter. The Eadwine Psalter, MS R. 17. 1, kept at Trinity College, Cambridge, can also be mistaken for BNF Latin MS 8846 which is, to my knowledge, the sole and unique example of such lavish entheobotanical imagery that survives. I have examined a book reproduction of the Cambridge MS and find many parallels but no imagery comparable to the Paris MS. Eadwine ("generous friend") is the name assigned to the Medieval scribe believed to be responsible for these masterpieces. It appears that scholars attach the same quasi-historical person to all three 12th century Psalters.

Until now, the Paris Eadwine Psalter has been studiously ignored by scholars who (as far as I can tell) make no comment on the blatant psychedelic images used to illustrate Biblical narratives. The graphic contents of the MS are totally unknown to the general public. My secondary aim in PARADISE DENIED was to introduce this astonishing book to the world.

The images in the Paris Eadwine Psalter are stunning, explicit, and unmistakable. They require no squinting and speculation, as occurs with esoteric doctrines allegedly encoded in great works of art. This one-of-a-kind manuscript presents vivid evidence in support of the Wasson thesis.
Currently, there is a rapidly growing body of research confirming Wasson's views, but nothing accessible to mainstream interest. PARADISE DENIED was intended to be the taboo-breaker to follow The Da Vinci Code — with comparable, if not considerably higher, potential for shock value.

I have not seen the original BNF Latin MS 8846—special permission is required to access and handle it—but I have closely studied the microfilm in the library archives. Some illustrations show an elaborate proliferation of mushrooms and elegantly branched mushroom-trees, recalling the surrealism of Dali's paintings. Additional to the literal, botanically identifiable images are many examples of what I call the omphalos-bud: consider what looks like a blackberry behind the head of Adam in the image at the top of this page. The reddish fruit bedecking the top of the Tree of Knoweldge recalls the form of a a pomegranate with its juicy facets. The imagery presents white psilocybin heads side by side with the omphalos-bud and the promegranate motif.

The prototype of the omphalos-bud is the world navel from Delphi. As explained in the Gnostic Gallery 2, "seasoned initiates made a special rite of gazing at the omphalos stone. A peculiar braiding of knotted and bisected chromosome-like structures adorned these stones... By holding their bodily concentration steady, initiates not only saw the Light interpenetrating the omphalos, they entered it, visually. Gazing into the depths of the substantial shadowless white luminosity, they saw the molecular structure of living matter, not just the form of DNA, suggested by the cruciform seed-like nodules engraved on the omphalos, but also the peculiar kinking and twisting
of nucleic threads. This was the epiphany of the divine serpentine force to be encountered within the ornamental marble dome. Thus the omphalos, navel, was the entry point for perception of the cosmic umbilicus, navel-string, DNA-RNA."

I believe that the artistic convention of portraying psychoactive mushrooms by the omphalos-bud points directly to initiatory knowledge surving from the Mysteries into the 12th Century. The imagery of the Paris Eadwine Psalter shows both the botanical identity of sacramental mushrooms and the visionary effect they produce, extending to the perception of molecular structure. The visual evidence here confirms my statement (The Oldest Taboo in the World) that the Tree of Knowledge, source of the forbidden fruit, conferred the wisdom that opens the way to the secret of immortality, represented by the Tree of Life (in modern terms, DNA, the human genome, ontogenic and phylogenetic evolution). This is why the Tree of Knowledge had to be forbidden, but not the Tree of Life. Yet then Adam and Eve had been awakened to heightened perception by eating of the former, they had to be banished from parasidise, lest they should then access the latter. This is how I decode the Genesis myth of the two Trees.

I need to confirm the details, but my preliminary research suggests that R.Gordon Wasson and Tina may have come quite close to discovering the Paris Eadwine Psalter. During their trips to Europe, they were often assisted by European colleagues who led them to source materials. In one instance, they were shown an Edenic scene from the Utrecht Psalter (Utrecht, Germany, Universiteitsbibliotheek, MS 32/484), produced at Reims in France around 820 CE, about three centuries before the Eadwine/Canterbury psalters. As the illustration below shows, the Utrecht psalter also contains some imagery suggestive of entheobotany: the mushroom-like forms on wispy stems might be taken for psilocybin fungi. But this imagery is pale and indistinct compared to the outrageous illustrations of the Paris MS.

It is fascinating to wonder what Gordon and Tina Wasson would have made of the Paris MS had their research let them to it. Scholars today who analyze the entheobotanical psalter, without so much as a nod to its explicit imagery, often cite the Utrecht Psalter as a prototype. The logical course of investigation for the Wassons would have been from the 9th century psalter tradition to the 12th century psalters.

Typical half-page illustration from the Paris Psalter:

As I was circulating the book proposal for PARADISE DENIED, a friend asked, "What does the Paris Eadwine Psalter prove, regarding the Wasson thesis?" Well, it does not prove anything in terms of Wassons' specific claim that the primordial mushroom cult was Eurasian and probably employed fly-agaric (amanita muscaria), rather than blue-staining psilocybin mushrooms. It does prove, however, that an entheobotanical cultic tradition, possibly a remnant of the Mysteries, survived into the 12th Century in Europe and profoundly influenced (better said: subverted) the religious art of the time. Latin MS 8846 does not directly confirm Wasson, but it does confirm a more expansive model of entheogenic theory, allowing for global and botanical variations, and does so in a most spectacular manner.

Saturday, February 9, 2008

The Entheogenic Revolution Podcast

Author, Artist, Musician, Burner Dr. Martin Ball is hostsing a new podcast entitled "The Entheogenic Evolution" a show dedicated to discussion of entheogens, ritual, culture, and personal transformation. For those of you who are not familiar with Martin. He is the author of Mushroom Wisdom: How Shamans Cultivate Spiritual Consciousness and Sage Spirit: Salvia Divinorum and the Entheogenic Experience. He is an all around great guy who is very comited to the Entheogenic community.

The Entheogenic Evolution, Episode 1: Peyote
In the premier episode, Martin discusses his personal experiance with peyote and Native American Church, featuring an interview with his grandfather. Download the MP3

The Entheogenic Evolution, Episode 2: DMT and the Mystic Toad
The Second episode discusses Bufo Alvarious's entheogenic venom which contains 5-MeO-DMT. Also Featuring Oroc's "Tryptamine Palace" and an interview with Hal, a Man of the Toad. Download the MP3

The Entheogenic Evolution, Episode 3: Sound Structurs in Hyperspace This Installment asks, does sound create structures in hyperspace while in the psychedelic state? In this episode we listen to a track from DJ EROCx1’s Kykeon CD featuring Terence McKenna talking about DMT and creation through sound awhile Martin Ball relates his own experiences of Salvia divinorum and sound.

I agree with Martin that Saliva and music are in deed very harmonious together. The music comes to life, it flows like a river of energy and the Diviners Sage is the raft on which consciousness floats. Similar to Icaros and Ayahuasca. Peaceful music helps me navigate Salvia space. Eyes closed, with incense and music has been the most rewarding for me. When I open my eyes, I get fixated on objects and small details of ordinary reality. However with the eyes closed, one can travel deep into the depths of their own mind and experience the infinite fractal universe that is inside each and every one of us. -EROCx1

Also new information about the new webcast TV show of the Entheogenic Evolution on EQ.TV (
Download the MP3

You can subscribe via iTtunes or visit the podcast's homepage

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Indian guru Maharishi Yogi dies

The Maharishi built up a following of about six million people worldwideThe Indian Hindu guru, Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, who is credited with setting the Beatles and other stars on the path to spiritual enlightenment, has died.

The Maharishi, thought to have been 91 years old, died in his sleep on Tuesday evening at his home in the Netherlands.

He introduced the Transcendental Meditation movement to the West in 1958, with the intention of creating individual peace and enlightenment.

By the time of his death, it had grown into a multi-million dollar empire.

Born in the Indian state of Madhya Pradesh, the Maharishi trained as a physicist before devoting himself to spiritual enlightenment.

After studying in the Himalayas under Guru Dev during the 1940s and 1950s, he spread the teachings of transcendental meditation throughout the world.

He eventually built up a following of about six million people in more than 100 countries. His most famous followers were the Beatles, who travelled to India in 1968 to meditate with him.
The Maharishi announced his retirement last month, saying his work was done.

Sunday, February 3, 2008

4th International Amazonian Shamanism Conference

The 4th International Amazonian Shamanism Conference:
July 19th - 27th, 2008

The 4th Amazonian Shamanism Conference will be opened by the illustrious visionary scientist, Dr.Dennis Mckenna. Other Presenters (with more confirming soon are - That master of sound healing- Dr. Richard Grossman, the Indiana Jones of Amazon Shamanism and noted journalist - Peter Gorman, the most excellent scientfic researcher on brain states while taking ayahuasca- Dr. Frank Echenhofer, the Amazon's most famous visionary painter- Pablo Amaringo, the intrepid Victoria Alexander speaking on her research of Medieval Mysticism and Its Empirical Kinship to Ayahuasca, the very profound Melvin Morse and his research into childrens near death experiences as well as his research on Myths, the renowned Dr. John Alexander and his years of training and research on Remote Viewing, one of the Director's of Eagle's Wing and author Howard Charing, Conference Organizer Alan Shoemaker speaking on 15 years in shamanism, the visionary masters Robert Venosa and Martina Hoffman and many more to be Confirmed.

The list of shamans (curanderos) is coming next and they are the most powerful we can find. There will be approximately 15 different curanderos/shamans giving presentations (all are translated into English by the lovely and erudite Yasmin Grant).
During the Conference Presentations you will have ample opportunities to hear the many shamans speaking alone as well as in panel discussions. It is during this time that you will get a sense of which healer you would like to be in Ceremony with. Especially during the question and answer times. There are three evenings set aside for you to be in Ceremony with the shaman - curandero or your choice. All Ceremonies are held outside of Iquitos, either up or downriver or way out on the Iquitos to Nauta highway and then a short 15 minute walk into the various Compounds.For those that have never been in Ceremony before, a workshop will be held by Dr. Richard Grossman and Alan Shoemaker so that all of your questions can be adequately answered. The Ceremonies offered are completely voluntary and not in any way a prerequisite of attending the Conference.

There's much more information up on the website and more to come as we confirm more Presenters and Shamans. click on shamanism conference

all the good things,
Alan Shoemaker and Mariella Noriega de Shoemaker