Today’s random item from the Terence McKenna archives appeared in a magazine called Psychedelic Illuminations (which later became TRP: The Resonance Project, which later became Trip Magazine, which later became Tripzine.com). Our item of interest appeared in Psychedelic Illuminations #8 (Winter 1995/1996). It is, in fact, a rather curious item that is, in many ways, a very odd thing to publish, and, in other ways, is an exercise that perhaps many of us can sympathize with. Barry Klein, writing under the pseudonym Runyan Wilde, has created a sort of reverse pseudo-interview with Terence McKenna using TM’s written and spoken words from other interviews to provide a basis for Wilde’s further commentary, sometimes at odds with McKenna and sometimes in qualified agreement. In other words, Klein (as Wilde) essentially presents his own commentary on a range of Terence’s thoughts as expressed to earlier interviewers.
Here are some excerpts from Runyan Wilde’s ‘Hallucinations on the Archaic Revival’–you can download a PDF of the entire “interview” here:
[P.S. – This is another publication that the archives does not possess a physical copy of, which also includes an essay by Terence–below are photos I took of someone else’s copy. I have found a copy available that will cost the archives $18.99 to acquire. If you would like to help fund the acquisition of this item, please donate directly at the Transcription Project website or make an order from our crowdfund shop. Thanks for your help!]
I intend my comments, taken from my own favorite paradigms, to arouse thought and discussion, not as statements of some real “Truth” in contention with Terence’s ideas…
I think mysticism is not something that happens to you, I define it as a precisely ordered set of disciplines from within, within the outlines of a specific set of paradigms. This should distinguish our version from the jumbles of neo-occultism and empty ritualism. I believe that what Terence is referring to as mysticism must be more the experiential sense of wonderment and transcendence enjoyed in the rich psychedelic journey.
98% of the experiences people have with psychedelic substances [are not mystical], because they are mostly devoid of purpose and context.
Much of our scriptures and mystical literature are attempts to describe what was seen and experienced in altered states of consciousness.
Terence has fallen back into psycho-political-social philosophy, which is not of the same order as psychedelic consciousness.
This phenomenon–the voice in the head–can be both a blessing and a curse. It’s true, the information is outside of ordinary personality, but that in itself does not make the source reliable, nor prove that there are extraterrestrials or transdimensional elves, whom I rather distrust anyway… What is necesary is self-reliance without self-importance, because then we can compare what we are seeing and hearing to our larger experience without getting hooked by the amazing seductions these dimensionalities can come up with.
There have been some good bridges built by the New Age, but now it has fallen derelict, with shoddy mediums channeling while they drink beer, disciples of hidden (non-existent) masters peddling their techniques for a thousand dollars, and earnest devotees spending years of their lives building replicas of spacecraft whose description was channeled to them.
The reason shamanic traditions personify Death (capitalized here for that reason) is that, in order to be able to navigate on the other side, the shaman must form a personal relationship with his own impending Death.
Diddling with entheogens is an insult to oneself as well as to the Spirit…however, I have seen enough wasted, and toxic, “heroic doses” to realize that merely taking a high dose of something does not guarantee any breakthroughs, visions, or realizations, and I have seen (and experienced) penetrating results from ridiculously low doses, including none at all…
Nature by itself cannot be the guide, since its purposes might be best served by no one’s awakening or breaking free of the ordinary mold, but everything we’ve talked about points to the notion that the only thing that we have to rely on is our individual relationship with Consciousness itself, not any external substance, nor its dosage, nor its history, nor “reasonable social values.” Many of the shamanic cultures have some despicable social values like mutilation, torture, human sacrifice, eating the brains of the dead, circumcision of young girls and endless tribal warfare–not so very reasonable, I’d say.
Why would you wish to integrate human and machine intelligence? There is no machine intelligence other than what some particular human intelligences put into it in the first place. Terence is still laboring under the notion that it will be mechanistic science that leads us, the human race, into that amazing hyperworld of the future, while elsewhere he acknowledges that science fails miserably with the ineffable. Terence, are you planning on selling us a computer program that will give use the measliest cullings of that which is our birthright as humans with consciousness? Why would I buy a program when I can see for myself directly for the price of a couple of mushrooms or a few tokes of DMT, and ultimately with just proper training?… The very shamanic cultures that Terence is supposed to have studied do plenty of transmogrifying without defining themselves as bits and bytes. I thought we were looking for a more wholistic paradigm.
Runyan Wilde, who has been studying the mysteries all his life, is the author of psychedelic poetry, social commentary. Under another name, he has made some fifty radio broadcasts and given numerous on personal transformation and mysticism. He is not what you’d think, and yet he is.