"...It's not for your elucidation, it's not for your own self- directed psychotherapy; you are an explorer, and you represent our species, and so the greatest good you can do is bring back a new idea because our world is endangered by the absence of good ideas, our world is in crisis because of the absence of consciousness."
- Terence McKenna
Though this proclamation was in regards to psychedelic drugs, it is universally applicable. Our world is truly in danger due to a distinct lack of good ideas, moreso by the inability of those in power to implement good ideas.
Furthermore, it is in danger from an overabundance of bad ideas.
In order to awaken the masses, we must seek radical solutions with high probabilities to produce results. In order to balance our own philosophy to match the real world, we must seek moderation and scientific backing. These goals do not necessarily conflict and may indeed go well together. In order to find a new whole, we must both look to the radical as well as to the moderate and create a system, or function, which can be described as optimized, or even perfected.
Returning to McKenna's quote, we must become explorers of new ideas, for both neuroscientific proven health benefits, for the establishment of new lines of reasoning, and for more advanced and positive conclusions towards the achievement of goals. The Hegelian method is largely sound; to take opposites and combine them into a unified and transcendent wholes.
This concept is therefore also alchemical in nature; the combining of opposites is the base to alchemical understanding, and this practice exists for the sake of balance. The great psychologist Carl Jung wrote multiple books concerning alchemy as it relates to psychology. He also wrote of many other occult concepts, some of which relate to the usage of psychedelics. To Jung, the occult was simply phenomena corresponding to psychological occurrings. That is to say that Jung believed that elements of the psyche revealed themselves through occult philosphy.
To speak of the neuroscience of psychedelics, MRIs have shown that psychedelics both reduce activity in the Default Mode Network (DMN) as well as increase overall activity in the brain. This functionally means that the normal, mundane, ego-self, is shut down while the rest of the brain has more overall interaction. This interaction has been described as "randomness," yet this alleged randomness may only be a limitation of current technology to accurately and precisely pattern the interactions of neurons in a fully coherent manner.
In most spiritual systems, that is to say as a meta-analysis of spiritual systems, spirituality appears to encourage the minimization or even destruction of ego. So reducing activity in the DMN could be seen as a spiritual act, or perhaps even a spiritual duty. From the Greek eleusis, to the Hindu soma, even to certain Druidic rites, it seems we have all we need to minimize the ego in adherents.
In order to be open to new ideas one must minimize their ego. How else could one accept what has not already been accepted? In another line of reasoning, children are said to have small egos. What does it mean to become a child again? Does this mean setting aside the ego, to embrace the divine that is revelation? Are perhaps, the Tantrists correct that even proper physical union can bring about enlightenment?
Perhaps substances are not necessary for psychedelic activity at all. We may desire then to look at the other side of the coin, the increased connectivity between substructures of the brain. Randomness in the brain necessarily indicates the formation of new ideas and, in some instances, sensations are, I shall suffice to say, equal with ideas if given the necessary phenomenological analysis which are both direct results of new connections in the brain. No thought, no memory can form without new connections; formations throughout the brain.
There are of course many methods of rapidly increasing the number of connections throughout the brain, not just substances. In The Book of Highs by Edward Rosenfeld, over two hundred fifty methods of altering consciousness without the use of substances are described and more often than not, given reference to further reading. If there are that many methods of altering consciousness without substances, certainly a few methods may be worth directly investigating? And to answer everyone's question, yes, I have investigated them.
Many methods are already practiced by Conservatives and even National Socialists, with their disdain for chemical alteration of the mind.
It appears that a great many practices for altering the mind are also present in many spiritual systems. From self-mutilation, to abstinence, to artistic expression, even to the writing of music, altering consciousness is common through both theist and even atheist schools of abstinent thinkers. So, are there any other methods which require looking into for the sake of not only spiritual development but also intellectual enlightenment? Unfortunately, there are too many methods to list here, and I shall leave it to the reader to decide for themselves whether it is worthwhile to begin the study of, or even participation in, consciousness-altering methods.
As mentioned before, the Hegelian method is sound, but it is not the only one. Reinterpretation is another method, and yes, this too establishes new connections in the brain. Texts which are intentionally reinterpretable are known as esoteric texts. Esoteric literature is immensely important in most spiritual systems, as it is cause for reflection and occasionally applicable to spiritually inspired principles for the purpose of achieving a goal. Sometimes the goal is simple enlightenment, other times the goal is material gain.
One need not believe in God or gods to alter his consciousness, as even reading new books and articles such as this one can alter consciousness. Atheism is sadly quite common these days. I can never quite pin down my own expression of spirituality, and so I am mostly alone in regard to my sense of spiritual fulfillment. Others, who are spiritual, are more commonly Christians, Catholics or on occasion, Jews or Muslims, and I am somewhat distant from them all. Yet I recognize the practices of the Abrahamic faiths are ego-subverting and creativity-encouraging and therefore useful.
It has been said, though for the life of me I cannot find where or who said it, that the magician is simultaneously attached and detached from his end goal.
This can be interpreted as indicating an attachment to success coupled with detachment of a particular form of imagined end. This is therefore useful as avoiding particularity in our vision of an end goal means we will be more willing to embrace success even when success does not match our imagined ideal of success. We may thus also be detached from our methodology in order to attain our goals.
Detaching from a held vision, as well as detaching from methodology, allows us much more leeway in solving a problem. Yet we can maintain a goal as well; and we can all share a goal. If our goals are relatively vague, we are more likely to avoid adhering to idealizing visions of our goals, and it also becomes easier to agree on goals. Keeping goals somewhat vague such as "maximize prosperity for the majority of people" makes them more common. It also disallows narrowness in methodology for the ascertaining thereof.
If we are to continue looking into occult philosophy then we should not stop our search for useful tools there. There is a statement given by occult author Lon Milo DuQuette in his 2009 book "Low Magick."
"...if the magician is in touch with the Great G, there is no devil too evil, no angel too fallen, no demon too foul to be redeemed and pressed into the service of the Great Work."
We may easily interpret this statement into our own work as essentially "there is no resource too objectionable to be used" or as "there is no methodology too extreme to explore."
Thus, both radical and moderate concepts become accessible. Marxism and Fascism are both tools which become usable in transcending an issue. Conservatism as well as liberalism are mere tools as well. Perhaps the most powerful tool is scientific research.
Robert Anton Wilson wrote numerous books which explain his concept of a reality tunnel, which is essentially a Worldview held by someone based on their perception and information. It can be said that the more reality tunnels one has access to, the closer to absolute truth one may get. He provided numerous exercises for flexing one's ability to traverse reality tunnels. These tools are valuable for reducing the influence of the ego on perception, and the maximization of knowledge concerning topics.
Thus, goal-oriented philosophy is both pragmatic as well as explorative. We must furnish our philosophy with as much usefulness as possible while keeping it varied and distinct.
Goal-Oriented Philosophy seeks solutions which are multiplicious in their ability to solve, satiating the psychological, physical, and spiritual. We must further use our spiritual practice to move away from our closed off dogmatic thinking and open up to new practices.
We may find ourselves stumbling onto new plateaus of enlightenment or perhaps into untested scientific theories. We may formulate highly unique and ecclectic lifestyles designed to optimize our minds towards an intended goal. Whatever is necessary to weaponize and sharpen our minds towards a meta-heterostatic standpoint, we shall find ourselves doing. We become more flexible and yet simultaneously stricter in our thinking.
Goal-Oriented Philosophy is the most adept way forward and is open enough for all to join. As a whole, our goal is to provide novelty to the world and thus our movement is psychedelic by its very nature. This psychedelia is transcultural is also transcultural, as we seek not only to learn from all but also to work with all towards applicable solutions. We may also find ourselves in the place of both goal solving and value-analysis of our own works. Thus, both qualifying and quantifying the value inherent to each solution provided.
We seek an end to quarrels through our work, as focusing on solutions as opposed to visions allows us to argue the less malleable elements of toolmaking. Tools may be non-physical, such as Occam's razor, but physical tools may also be applied. Again, whatever is necessary to achieve our goals is open for use.
With our minds enhanced with practices, our alchemical toolbelt set, and our union formed, with our goals agreed upon, we embark. Embracing a world which is in desperate need, and fulfilling the answers to questions yet unanswered, and problems yet unsolved. We set out to change the world for the better. We set out to better ourselves.
There is much more to behold.