Huxley on Visionary Experiences

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As always, consider the variety of risks involved with any kind of drug or practice.

Quote:See What do we know about the risks of psychedelics? & free documentary What's in My Baggie? There is an incredible danger in thinking you can just find good psychedelics via illegal markets, I can say that from personal experience as I was attacked by a friend who thought LSD could cure his depression.

Visionary Experience - Lecture, August 1961

Aldous Huxley

Quote:...he says that, for this reason, the most beautiful thing in this world is fire—which is a transference, as we see, from the inner facts of the visionary world into the outer fact. This is a transference of value from something which is highly esteemed in the inner world into the outer world. And says the most beautiful thing in this world is fire. And it’s interesting to find, for example, in Ezekiel’s description of the Garden of Eden [that] he speaks of it being filled with gems; filled with what he called “stones of fire.” As I hope to show later on, this richness of gem-like qualities which is found in the visionary world does explain many very strange facts about certain types of art, and many facts about the curious uniform quality of religious traditions, folklore traditions, traditions of the nature of the Golden Age and the afterlife, which are found all over the world—and we can talk about that later.

Quote:He tied himself up in a harness which didn’t permit him to move more than a tenth of an inch. He was in a lightproof and soundproof room. Well, the interesting fact is that, within four hours, he and those colleagues of his who submitted to this extremely drastic treatment were seeing very, very strange visions. And where the deprivation of external stimuli is not quite so complete as it was in Hebb’s experiments, similar visions will be seen within 24 to 36 hours. Now, one of the interesting facts here is that the great majority of these visions were extremely unpleasant. They were so unpleasant that I’ve asked Dr. Lilly what they were, and he has always declined to tell me. I don’t know what the—they must’ve been very unpleasant, indeed.
'Historically, we may regard materialism as a system of dogma set up to combat orthodox dogma...Accordingly we find that, as ancient orthodoxies disintegrate, materialism more and more gives way to scepticism.'

- Bertrand Russell

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Huxley was very eye-opening.  His mescaline experiences give a lot of food for thought.

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