Monday, May 14, 2007


I'm not scared of anything...except maybe this stuff. I've known about it for years. I've read a lot about it. I don't ever want to be within ten feet of it, let alone ingest it. I'm pretty sure that I'd never live through the experience- or worse yet, live the rest of my life like that. Remember, the mind is the most powerful thing there is.

From: Scotto
Subject: Terence on Psychedelics and DMT (2)
Date: Wed, 8 Jul 92 20:53:34 EDT

Terence McKenna
Excerpted w/o Permission from
'A Weekend With Terence McKenna,' Feb 1992

DMT is the strongest hallucinogen there is. If it's possible to get more loaded than that, I don't want to know about it, and I say so when I'm there. I say, 'My God, if you can get more loaded than this, keep it away from me.' So that's it, it's the strongest. It's also the shortest acting. DMT when smoked in most people is, return you to normal in under ten minutes. Under ten minutes! Now, this is interesting because people who think there's nothing to this should actually invest the ten minutes to find out what's, you know... A ten minute DMT trip is worth twenty years of academic pharmacology, art history, psychology and all this other malarky. Because then you just say, 'Okay, I got it, I got it...' Another very interesting thing about DMT is, it occurs naturally in the human brain. Well, now what's going on here? He's saying the strongest drug, the fastest drug, is the most natural drug? It means that, you know, you don't have to sail off into 3-hydroxy-4-peridal- enmethylmarubyshtick or something like that to get into the exotic realms. No -- a human metabolite, which takes only ten minutes to undergo its entire exfoliation and quenching, is the strongest of all.

Well, then, what is it? What does 'strong' mean? What is a strong psychedelic? You know, it's highly personal. Every psychedelic trip is. But what happens on DMT for a large number of people -- I mean, we don't have any statistics, but -- it is a completely confounding experience. I mean, you may have had the expectation, you might think if you had never had a psychedelic experience that it sort of begins like the Bach B minor fugue, and goes from there as you rise into the realms of light and union with the deity or something like that. That's not what happens on DMT. What happens on DMT I referred to this morning: a troop of elves smashes down your front door, and rotates and balances the wheels on the afterdeath vehicle, present you with the bill and then depart. (laughter) And it's completely paradigm shattering. I mean, you know, union with the white light you could handle. (laughter) An invasion of your apartment by jewelled self-dribbling basketballs from hyperspace that are speaking demotic Greek is *not* something that you anticipated and could handle. Sometimes people say, 'Is DMT dangerous? It sounds so crazy. Is it dangerous?' The answer is, only if you fear death by astonishment. (laughter)

Remember how you laughed when this possibility was raised. And a moment will come that will wipe the smile right off your face. (laughter)

One thing that endears DMT to me is, I like to say, it doesn't affect your mind. It doesn't seem to affect your mind. In other words, you don't change under the influence of DMT. You don't become a kinder, gentler person. YOu don't sink into, you know, a line of drool from one corner of your mouth as you sit there twitching. *You* don't change. What happens is, the world is completely replaced, instantly, 100 percent, it's all gone. And what is put in its place, not one iota of what is put in its place was taken from this world. So its a 100% reality channel switch. They don't even retain three dimensional space and linear time. It's not like you go to an exotic place, Morroco or New Guinea. It's like reality is swapped out for something else, and when you try to say what it is, you realize that language has evolved in this world, and it can serve no other, or it takes years of practice. So what you're looking at is literally the unspeakable. The indescribably falls into your lap. And when you try -- you're loaded, right, you're there, and you're trying to explain to yourself what's happening, and so this is like you try to pour water over the transdimensional objects in front of you, the water of language. And it just beads up and flows off like water off a duck's back. You cannot say what's there.

And I've spent, I don't know, twenty-five years fiddling with this. It's become the compass of my inspiration, trying to say what is on the other side of that boundary. Just two large tokes away at any given time is this non-Euclidean, non-Newtonian, irrational, un-Englishable place, but it's not smooth and empty and clear. That's not what gives it its indescribability. What gives it is indescribability is its utter weridness, its alienness, its power to astonish.

What happens to me when I smoke DMT is, there's a kind of going toward it. There's a sequella of events which lead to the antechamber of the mystery. I mean, you take a toke, you feel strange. Your whole body feels odd. You take a second toke, all the oxygen seems to have been pumped out of the room. Everything jumps into clarity. It's that visual acuity thing. You take a third toke if you're able, and then you lay back, and you see this thing which looks like a rose or a chyrsanthemum, this orange spinning flowerlike thing. It takes about fifteen seconds to form, and it's like a membrane. And then, you break through it. You break through it, and then you're in this place, and there's an enormous cheer which goes up as you pass through this membrane. Some of you may know the Pink Floyd song about how the gnomes have learned a new way to say hoo-ray? They're waiting. And you burst into this place, and you're saying, you know, 'Geez, you know, this stuff is really speedy.' (laughter) That's like describing a Space Shuttle launching as noisy, you know? (laughter) And you say, 'Am I all right? Am I all right?' That's the first question, and so then you run your mind around the track, and you say, 'Hmm. Heartbeat normal? Yeah, normal, heartbeat normal. Pulse normal? Breathing? Breathe breathe breathe, yes.' But what's right here, right here and from here out is this thing which, no matter how much science fiction you've done, no matter how much William Burroughs you've read, no matter how much time you've spent in the company of the weird, the bizarre, the autre, and the peculiar, you weren't ready. (laughter) And it's completely real. It's in a way more real than the contents of ordinary reality, because, see how the shadows here are muted and there's a lot of transitional zones from one color to another and so forth? This isn't like that. This is crystalline, clear, solid, you can see the light reflected in the depths of these objects, and everything is very brightly colored, and everything is moving very, very rapidly.

And there are entities there. It's not about calling them up or the whisperings of them. No, they're IN YOUR FACE. (laughter) And they're right here, and they're worse than in your face, because what they do is, they jump into your chest and then they jump out. And you have to keep saying, 'Keep breathing, keep breathing, don't freak out, pay attention.' And the entities speak to you, and they speak both in English and another way which we'll get to in a minute. But in English what they say is, 'Do not give way to wonder. Hang on. Don't just go gaga with disbelief. Pay attention. Pay attention.' And what they're trying to do is they're trying to show you something. They are very aware of the fleeting nature of this encounter. And they say, you know, 'Don't spiral off into amazement, and start raving about God and all that. Forget that. Pay attention to what we're doing.'

And then, what they're doing is they're dancing around, they're jumping around, they're emerging explicitly out of the background, bounding toward you, jumping into your chest, bounding away, and they offer, they make offerings. And they love you, that's the other thing. They say this. They say, 'We love you. You come so rarely. And, you know, here you are. Welcome, welcome.' And they make these offerings. And the offerings are objects of some sort. And now remember, you are not changed. You're exactly the person you were a few minutes before. So you're not exalted or depressed. You're just trying to make sense of this. And the objects which they offer are like, Faberge eggs, or exquisitely tooled and enamelled pieces of machinery, but they don't have rigid outlines. They objects are themselves somehow alive, and transforming and changing. So when these creatures -- I call them 'tykes' -- when these tykes offer you these objects, you like, you grok it, you look it and immediately, because you are yourself, you have this realization: my God, if I could get this thing back into my world, history would never be the same. A single one of these objects is somehow, you can tell by looking at it, this would confound my world beyond hope of recovery. It cannot exist. What I'm being shown is a tiny area where miracles are transformed.

And the creatures, the tykes, are singing. They are speaking in a kind of translinguistic glossil alia. They are actually making these objects with their voices. They are singing these things into existence. And what the message is, is 'Do what we're doing. You can do what we're doing. DO IT.' And they get quite pushy about this. They say, you know, 'Damn it, DO IT!' And you're saying, 'Bu...bu...bu...bu...' And they say, 'No, DO IT! Do it NOW! DO IT!' And you say, 'I can't handle this,' you know, and then this kind of reaction goes on for awhile. Well, then, I actually...I don't take credit for it, it was not willed, but like something comes up from inside of you. Something comes out of you, and you discover you can do it, that you can use language to condense objects into existence in this space. It's the dream of all magic, but here it is, folks, happening in real time. And then they're just delighted. They just go mad with delight and turn somersaults and turn themselves inside out and they all jump into your chest at once.

And after many encounters of this sort...I mean, when I first did DMT, I couldn't bring anything out of it. I mean, I just said, you know, 'It's the damndest thing I've ever encountered and I can't say anything about it and I don't think I ever will be able to say anything about it.' But by going back repeatedly and working at it, I think I've gotten a pretty coherent -- well, let's not go that far. (laughter) I think I've got a pretty clear metaphor anyway for what's happening in there, and I think a lot of people have this experience. When you talk to shamans, they say, 'Oh, well, yes, the helping spirits. Those are the helping spirits. They can help you cure, find lost objects, you didn't know about the helping spirits?' And you say, 'Well, I knew, but I, I had no idea that it was so literal.' And they say, 'Oh, no, that's the helping spirits.'

But then, the other thing they say, if you press a shaman, if you say, 'Well, what exactly is a helping spirit?' They say, 'Well, a helping spirit is an ancestor.' You say, 'You mean to tell me that those are dead people in there?' They say, 'Well, yes, ancestor, dead person. You didn't know about ancestors apparently. This is what happens to people who die.' And you say, 'My God, is it possible that what we're breaking into here is an ecology of souls?' That these are not extraterrestrials from Zenebelganooby or Zeta Reticula Beta. These are the dear departed. And they exist in a realm which, for want of a better word, let's call eternity. And somehow this drug, or whatever it is, is allowing me to see across the veil. This is the lifting -- you want to talk about boundary dissolution. It's one thing to get tight to your partner, it's quite another to get tight to the dear departed of centuries past. That's a serious boundary dissolution when that happens.

What these creatures want, according to them, is they want us to transform our language somehow. And I don't know what this means. I mean, at this point in the weekend and in my life, we all are on the cutting edge, and nobody is ahead of anybody else. Clearly we need to transform our language, because our culture is created by our language, and our culture is toxic, murderous, and on a downhill bummer. Somehow we need to transform our language, but is this what they mean? That we're supposed to condense machines out of the air in front of us? How does this relate to the persistent idea, promulgated by Robert Graves and other people, that there is a primal language of poetry? That poetry as we know it is a pale, pale thing, and that at some time in the human past, people were in command of languages which literally compel belief. They *compel* belief, because they don't make an appeal through argument or metaphor. They compel belief because they are able to present themselves as imagery. You know, William Blake said, 'If the truth can be told so as to be understood, it WILL be believed.'

And it's very confusing, because you wonder, have people been doing this for thousands of years? And if so, have they always encountered this tremendous urgency on the other side? If people have been doing it for thousands of years, why is there this urgency on the part of these entities? And who exactly and what exactly are they? It appalls me, you can probably tell, that I have to talk about this, because I am not, this is not my baliwick. I mean, I'm a rationalist who's just had a very weird set of experiences, but I am a rationalist. I mean, I have no patience with channelling, you know, the lords of the many rays, the divas and, you know, there's this whole thing going around about disincarnate intelligence, mostly under the control of fairly, shall we say, non-rigorous thinkers. (laughter) But I like to think that I am a rigorous thinker, and yet, here I am, telling you that, you know, elf legions await in hyperspace one toke away.

The difference between my rap and, you know, the finned horned folks or somebody like that is that we have an operational method for testing my assertion. We can all smoke DMT, or you can make it your business to now find out about this, and see for yourself. And not everybody agrees with me. I mean, some people say it wasn't anything like that. But some people agree, and I think if you get two out of ten agreeing with a rap like this, then you'd better pay attention. (laughter)

(End of Part Two of Three)
Faithfully keyed in by Scotto the Incongruous


E=±mc²=Thé Ðëòxÿríßøñµçlëìç HÿÞêrdïmèñsîøñ"

Erowid DMT vault


Lycaeum Leda DMT


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