This is an excerpt from three-and-a-half hours of video I'm going to be uploading to YouTube. I edited in reaction shots of my engagement with this song in order to give you an idea of the incredible psychological wallop this work delivers. It's straight-up 21st century Gnosticism and utterly transformational. TRIGGER WARNING: THIS VIDEO CONTAINS PHOTOGRAPHS OF WARTIME ATROCITIES.
1. We are on the verge of civilizational collapse.
2. Avoiding this will require a spiritual transformation at a societal level. We need to find a way to pull together, to establish a common vision for the kind of world we want to live in--not just a nebulous notion, but a detailed imaginal reality--and then organize to actualize it.
3. Currently existing religions--including scientism--have thus far failed to provide that framework of meaning.
4. It's time to try something new.
5. Mystical experiences are the root and center of religion. All major world religions are based on the mystical experiences of their founders and early adopters. To the extent that they no longer provide such experiences for the majority of their followers, all major world religions are now decadent, if not useless.
6. Psilocybin mushrooms and other entheogens have been proven to produce mystical experiences--i.e., a direct apprehension of a Transcendent Reality.
7. Because of recent medical research into the efficacy of psychedelic therapy in treating trauma, depression, and addiction, societal attitudes towards these substances is shifting. It's likely that more and more people will begin to have mystical experiences. This opens the door to the possibility psychedelics will be a major influence on the future of religious practice.
8. However, without a common cognitive model to interpret such experiences, widespread psychedelic usage will result in a kind of religious Babel. Everyone will have their own unique take on things, some sophisticated, most inchoate and fairly banal. "We're all one, man," is not the impetus for widespread cultural change. The hippies tried it. It failed.
9. Furthermore, purely individual usage of psychedelics blunts the transformative impact these experiences can have. Human beings throughout history have developed ways to engage the sacred together. That's because the intensity of certain kinds of experiences are amplified when one is part of a group. It's why concerts and nightclubs are more fun than dancing alone in your room (unless you're an introvert, I guess).
10. In archaic cultures, group participation in entheogenic rituals was governed by an established shamanic culture. People knew how to behave and how to participate in order to create an optimal collective experience.
11. In the modern world we lack such a culture, and unless we develop one, stat, we're going to squander a remarkable opportunity for spiritual renewal.
12. Aping the practices of other cultures doesn't work. We need a shamanic tradition based in our own culture, one that couches eternal truths in modern idiom.
13. I've developed a prototype for just that.
14. It's based on something simple: singing and dancing along to popular songs while in an altered state of consciousness. The idea is to get into states of intense emotion. With skill, concentration, and a lot of fortitude, this enables you to tap into the collective human experience of that emotion--i.e., its Jungian archetype. This releases a tremendous blast of religious energy in your consciousness. This energy can be directed into images of the Divine one holds in the imagination. That image animates and will communicate with you. You talk to God, and God talks back. I'm not bullshitting you about this. This technique works. I've done it over eighty times during the last three years. It's a gigantic leap forward in spiritual technology. One can access ecstatic states of being that rival those reported by any medieval Christian saint or Himalayan yogi, and do it while maintaining a near-sober level of lucidity. And you can learn to do it in just a couple years, instead of spending decades meditating in a cave or a monastic cell.
15. I've invented a ceremony for this procedure. When performed privately, I call it the Phonomantic Rite. When performed publicly as a kind of entheotainment--which is to say, a theatrical spectacle specifically designed to create in its audience a direct apprehension of the sacred--I call it a Shamanic Cabaret. Either way, it is, I believe, a working prototype for a religion of the future.
16. Over the course of three-and-a-half hours--the length of a standard psilocybin trip--the Rite takes participants through emotional states that follow the template of Campbell's Hero's Journey. There's a rite of transformation that is intended to explore traditional ideas of masculine warrior energy, a rite of purification that explores feminine relatedness, and a rite of atonement that serves as an act of penance for the genocides of the past five centuries.
17. It's a combination of songs, chapter stories that explain the emotional targets of each song, and videos that shape those emotions via carefully selected imagery. The result is something like a combination of the Ludovico Technique and the super soldier serum process from the "Captain America" movie. It brings exultant highs and crushing lows. If you engage with it in a highly-suggestible altered state of consciousness, it's almost unbearably powerful. Frankly, there's never been anything like it (except maybe the Eleusinian Mysteries).
18. All of this has been developed as the result of extremely intense visionary experiences I began having in the summer of 2017. I describe it all in a book I released last year, so I won't go into it now. Suffice to say that this has been a period of incredible internal strain and remarkable personal transformation. I have basically cured my lifelong chronic loneliness and depression. I'm a vastly kinder and more empathetic person. And my creative output has gone through the roof. This is all the result of this work.
19. I firmly believe that if I can do this, so can you. There's a relatively simple method to it. All it requires is courage, self-control, and stamina, all of which are developed in the course of the training.
20. If enough people get on board, the result could be something almost beyond imagining: a society of self-actualized individuals mobilizing to take on with the ferocious joy the challenges we face.
21. Early on in this process, I had a vision: I was up in the air, looking down at a football stadium. There was an incredible show, like Cirque du Soleil crossed with a Van Halen concert--taking place before a sold-out crowd of fifty thousand people. And everyone one of them, I realized, was using the psychedelic substantia. There were taking part in a mass theatrical spectacle, doing intense personal psychological work, and having a collective experience of the sacred. The implications stunned me. Imagine a society that could produce fifty thousand people who had the maturity and self-control necessary to engage in psychedelic work in that kind of environment. It was science fictional. It was exactly the kind of world I'd like to live in.
22. We can each of us become cognitive superheroes, in fantastic physical condition, psychologically individuated, creatively fecund. We could put down our fucking phones and remember how to feel, and evolve into the citizens of the transcendent we were born to be. We could create an interstellar civilization that would be the New Atlantis.
23. Look. This is both the greatest and the worst thing that has ever happened to me. I understand that by going public with this--to say, like Jake and Elwood Blues, I'M ON A MISSION FROM (THE) GOD(DESS), and be totally serious about it--that I am making myself a social pariah. But this is important. We really are on the verge of blowing it, of actualizing all the post-apocalyptic fantasies that have been so popular for the last few decades. This is an all-hands-on-deck situation. Things are so desperate that if you've got a plan to save the world, you owe it to everyone to try to put it into action, no matter what the personal cost. That's what I'm doing. And man, I could really use your help.