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[Psychedelic Thinking and the Dawn of Homo Cyber — continued]

Guerilla tactics for evolutionaries

     There is an old cliché that says, “It is always darkest just before the dawn.” While I question the correctness of that statement, I think we can all agree that the forces of darkness seem to be running things with a firm hand at the moment. For example, in Washington we now have two former oil company executives in charge of our nation’s energy policy. Not only have they refused to restrict our greenhouse gas emissions, they actually intend to give federal subsidies (in other words, your tax money) to oil companies to help them build more refineries. And where do you suppose they are going to get the crude oil to process in these new refineries? They intend to pillage it from the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, currently the most pristine land the U.S. taxpayers own. These masters of the Big Lie are telling us we must despoil our ecological treasures to solve California’s energy crises. Yet they obscure the fact that only 0.02% of California’s electricity comes from oil. In fact, only 3% of the electricity in the entire country comes from oil.

     What is more, these swashbuckling industrial pirates are acting as if the voting public gave them a mandate to despoil our land, water, and air. Already they have forgotten that not only did it take a divided Supreme Court to place them in power, they didn’t even receive the majority of the popular vote. Darth Vader has conquered Washington. Now how are we going to take it back?

     I once heard Ken Kesey say that one of the most important things he learned from the Sixties was that there is no reason to go head on with a dumb guy carrying a gun. That seems quite wise to me. In fact, I believe we should take that advice to an even higher level. Not only should we not go head to head with these dumb guys with guns, we should not even engage them in guerilla skirmishes. The mistake that was made by some activists in the 1960s was to try to ferment a revolution. Revolutions seldom bring true and lasting change to the daily lives of most citizens. What is required, if the human species is to have any chance whatsoever for long-term survival, is evolution, conscious evolution. Homo cyber is an evolutionary, not a revolutionary. It is not our government that must be overthrown, it is our culture that must be recast to value sustainable living and to consider the Earth as a whole when making decisions that impact the biosphere.

     Our job as psychedelic thinkers is to do everything we can to nudge our culture into a more Gaian state of mind. It is up to us, the prototypes of Homo cyber, to remain steadfast and to stand up and be counted whenever we encounter the Big Lie. For some of you this is not going to be easy. I know this because not long ago I, too, was a modern mummer, working under deep cover in a Fortune 100 company. It is not always safe when you are so deep behind enemy lines. For example, when someone at work reinforces a Big Lie by saying MDMA burns holes in you head, what do you do? Do you simply keep your mouth shut for fear of blowing your cover, or do you directly confront your co-workers with the truth?

     As I said at the beginning of this presentation, a psychedelic thinker is also a person of action. Psychedelic thinkers are people who are willing to stand up and be counted. This doesn’t mean they have to throw open the door to their boss’s office and shout, “I’m mad as hell about drug testing, and I’m not going to take it any more!” My suggestion is to maintain at least some of your cover. Remember, one in every four adult Americans is now ready to accept the truth about our environmental crises and the War on Drugs. These people are everywhere, yet they mistakenly believe their numbers are few. This is why it is important to have as many psychedelic thinkers as possible infiltrate every nook and cranny of our society. We already have the critical mass necessary to act as a catalyst for the transformation of the consciousness of our entire species. Let’s not miss this unique opportunity to propel consciousness to its next level.

     Before I leave you with my guerilla tactics for psychedelic thinkers, I would like you to do a little time travelling. Come with me, if you will, to the year 2301, and imagine that we are in a natural history museum of the time. Visualize yourself looking at an exhibit of ancient humanoids similar to exhibits we see in natural history museums today. This exhibit shows cave men and their families gathered around a fire. Now let’s move to the next exhibit, which shows another stage of human development. The title of this exhibit is “Prototypes of the species Homo cyber as they appeared in the year 2001.” One of the wax figures would be intently using a laptop, another looking at her pager, while several others would have wires coming out of their ears and connected to cell phones on their hips. Of course, there is a poster from this conference in the background to show that these people are psychedelic thinkers.

     Got the picture?

     Now I would like you to shift your attention from the exhibit and focus on the form of being you are as you look at these wax figures of your ancestors. Do you see yourself in the meta-human form of Homo cyber, or do you see yourself as a form of Borg? My guess is that almost everyone here sees themselves as Homo cyber. Such a positive outcome, of course, is not assured. During this jump time between ages in which we now find ourselves, many outcomes are possible. The only thing we can be sure of is that the next 25 years promise to be the most significant period of time our species has yet encountered.

     The lines are now being drawn for the final battle in the War on Consciousness. The battle that is going to determine the future of consciousness on this planet for the next millennium is the one that will be waged over the soul of Homo cyber. Will the species Homo cyber remain pure, always a product of psychedelic thinking, or will the species mutate and become cybernetic slaves of primitive minds like the ones that now control this country? The answer to that question is up to the psychedelic thinkers alive today. Do we really have what it takes to stand up against the forces of darkness that threaten to stifle our inner lives?

     Until recently, the reemergence of psychedelic thinking has been primarily an underground phenomenon. Even today, with the exception of news about conferences like this, mainstream American culture remains largely unaware that a subculture of psychedelic thinkers even exists. If you ask them, some moderns and almost all traditionals will tell you that a single toke of marijuana will cause you to go insane. Believe it or not, a significant percentage of our population still believe “Reefer Madness” to be the final scientific word on psychedelic substances. Ignorance on such a massive scale is difficult to overcome.

     A new variable has entered the equation, however. A third subculture has evolved, and the people in this group are ready to accept the truth about psychedelic thinking. With such an audience now numbering in the tens of millions, the day has arrived for psychedelic thinkers to become more vocal. This is not a call to the barricades, for psychedelic thinkers are not revolutionaries. Psychedelic thinkers are evolutionaries, and their mission is to accelerate the evolution of consciousness on the planet Earth. Even if the time is not right for all psychedelic thinkers to drop their mummers masks in public, they can put them aside at home and transform themselves from mummers into memers.

     As you know, Richard Dawkins coined the word “meme” to mean a replicator that was to culture what the gene is to biology. He settled on “meme” to convey the idea of a unit of cultural transmission, or a unit of imitation.(15) The way I look at memes is to think of them as the DNA of consciousness. It is still not clear why one meme grows more quickly and stronger than another, but there is little question about a meme’s power to influence a culture. Thus we have a powerful, but unpredictable, tool for psychedelic thinkers to use as guerilla activists on the front lines of the evolution of consciousness.

     The memes I am about to suggest are far from final form. Frankly, they aren’t succinct enough to catch on. My purpose in putting them forward right now is only to give you an idea of the kind of action psychedelic thinkers can promote if they plant the right meme in the right mind. Here are some examples of memes that may interest psychedelic thinkers:

  • Rather than reducing our taxes so we can use that money to pay higher gasoline prices, why not nationalize the oil companies and reduce prices by eliminating their obscene profits?
  • Each time you email an elected official about an issue, send a copy of your message to world leaders who might agree with your point of view. It was reported that last year over 55 million pieces of email to the White House and Congress went unread. Wouldn’t it have been interesting, when the German Chancellor flew to Washington to harangue Bush for abandoning the Kyoto Treaty, if the Chancellor had copies of a million emails from U.S. citizens who supported his position?
  • If you are in a position at work or school where an honest discussion of these issues would compromise you in some way, print a copy of this talk, or something from MAPS or the Erowid site and leave it in a conference room, or on a friend’s desk.(16)
  • Promote a “vote against the incumbents” campaign for the next national elections. Imagine, if you will, that it is election day 2004. Now think what it would mean if every incumbent for a federal office was voted out. What a powerful message this would send to our political leaders.
  • Refuse to work for a company that does drug testing. Simply remove your mind from service to the military/prison/industrial complex. This is not so easy to accomplish these days. In my own case, it took almost three years from the day I made my decision to not work for drug testers until I made my actual escape from that world.
  • Whenever possible, don’t purchase products or services from companies that do drug testing.

     These are only rough approximations of the kind of memes psychedelic thinkers need to inject into our culture. While most new memes will arrive stillborn, occasionally one will live, and our culture will begin to evolve in yet another new direction. As I said earlier, our job as psychedelic thinkers is to do everything we can to nudge our culture into a more Gaian state of mind. Fortunately, we now have ways to influence our culture without engaging in the confrontational politics that failed us in the past.

     So what is it going to be, the best of times or the worst of times? I firmly believe that the answer to that question lies in the hands of today’s psychedelic thinkers. It is clear that a small but very committed minority can make a significant impact on the course of history. If you have spent some time in entheospace you already know the truth. Hold fast to that knowing, for it will surely set you free.

     Today, as our species inches its way up the beautiful mountain called consciousness, it is the psychedelic thinkers who are the advance scouts. Although we are far from the pinnacle, we have reached a ledge that is high enough for us to see that we have already made much progress. The choice we now face is whether to continue our climb, slide back down the mountain, or hew out a life on this ledge. I believe that by being here today, your choice is clear. You have elected to continue the climb. I cannot tell you where to find your next handhold. Some of you may decide to make the conscious decision to begin your evolution into Homo cyber. Others may continue their work as modern day mummers, working under deep cover and writing their own lines. We must all choose the path that is best for us. What is important is that psychedelic thinkers the world over end their silence. The day has arrived for us to stand up and be counted.

     The noosphere is now intensifying its focus within the structure of the Internet. Human history is about to enter a new age. We find life accelerating at an ever-increasing pace and our species dancing on the edge of chaos. Yet this is precisely where evolution does her best work. The choice is up to us. Do you take the blue pill and go back to sleep, or do you take the red pill and accept the challenge of consciously evolving to a higher state of being? Borg or Homo cyber, which will it be?

     I am quite sure that most of the people in this audience have already taken the red pill. That is why you are here today instead of following the mainstream cultural traditions of this holiday weekend. As if by magic, that little red pill you took has released you from being a lowly creature crawling on the ground, and transformed you into a beautiful butterfly that finds itself flying along the edge of chaos. Perhaps it will be your wings that cause a disturbance that propels human consciousness to its next level. You have chosen to take your place as an evolutionary, operating on the front lines of consciousness.

     As they say in the movies, “May the force be with you.”

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