New Maps of Hyperspace
by Terence McKenna
In James Joyce's Ulysses, Stephen Dedalus tells us, "History
is the nightmare from which I am trying to awaken." I would
turn this around and say that history is what we are trying to
escape from into dream. The dream is eschatological. The dream
is zero time and outside of history. We wish to escape into the
dream. Escape is a key thing charged against those who would
experiment with plant hallucinogens. The people who make this
charge hardly dare face the degree to which hallucinogens are
escapist. Escape. Escape from the planet, from death, from habit,
and from the problem, if possible, of the Unspeakable.
If one leaves aside the last three hundred years of historical
experience as it unfolded in Europe and America, and examines
the phenomenon of death and the doctrine of the soul in all its
ramifications - Neoplatonic, Christian, dynastic-Egyptian, and
so on, one finds repeatedly the idea that there is a light body,
an entelechy that is somehow mixed up with the body during life
and at death is involved in a crisis in which these two portions
separate. One part loses its raison d'etre and falls into dissolution;
metabolism stops. The other part goes we know not where. Perhaps
nowhere if one believes it does not exist; but then one has the
problem of trying to explain life. And, though science makes
great claims and has done well at explaining simple atomic systems,
the idea that science can make any statement about what life
is or where it comes from is currently preposterous.
Science has nothing to say about how one can decide to close
one's hand into a fist, and yet it happens. This is utterly outside
the realm of scientific explanation because what we see in that
phenomenon is mind as a first cause. It is a example of telekinesis:
matter is caused by mind to move. So we need not fear the sneers
of science in the matter of the fate or origin of the soul. My
probe into this area has always been the psychedelic experience,
but recently I have been investigating dreams, because dreams
are a much more generalized form of experience of the hyperdimension
in which life and mind seem to be embedded.
Looking at what people with shamanic traditions say about
dreams, one comes to the realization that for these people dream
reality is experientially a parallel continuum. The shaman accesses
this continuum with hallucinogens as well as with other techniques,
but most effectively with hallucinogens. Everyone else accesses
it through dreams. Freud's idea about dreams was that they were
what he called "day-residues," and that one could trace
the content of a dream down to a distortion of something that
happened during waking time.
I suggest that it is much more useful to try to make a geometric
model of consciousness, to take seriously the idea of a parallel
continuum, and to say that the mind and the body are embedded
in the dream and the dream is a higher-order spatial dimension.
In sleep, one is released into the real world, of which the world
of waking is only the surface in a very literal geometric sense.
There is a plenum - recent experiments in quantum physics tend
to back this up - a holographic plenum of information. All information
is everywhere. Information that is not here is nowhere. Information
stands outside of time in a kind of eternity - an eternity that
does not have a temporal existence about which one may say, "It
always existed." It does not have temporal duration of any
sort. It is eternity. We are not primarily biological, with mind
emerging as a kind of iridescence, a kind of epiphenomenon at
the higher levels of organization of biology. We are hyperspatial
objects of some sort that cast a shadow into matter. The shadow
in matter is our physical organism.
At death, the thing that casts the shadow withdraws, and metabolism
ceases. Material form breaks down; it ceases to be a dissipative
structure in a very localized area, sustained against entropy
by cycling material in, extracting energy, and expelling waste.
But the form that ordered it is not affected. These declarative
statements are made from the point of view of the shamanic tradition,
which touches all higher religions. Both the psychedelic dream
state and the waking psychedelic state acquire great import because
they reveal to life a task: to become familiar with this dimension
that is causing being, in order to be familiar with it at the
moment of passing from life.
The metaphor of a vehicle - an after-death vehicle, an astral
body - is used by several traditions. Shamanism and certain yogas,
including Taoist yoga, claim very clearly that the purpose of
life is to familiarize oneself with this after-death body so
that the act of dying will not create confusion in the psyche.
One will recognize what is happening. One will know what to do
and one will make a clean break. Yet there does seem to be the
possibility of a problem in dying. It is not the case that one
is condemned to eternal life. One can muff it through ignorance.
Apparently at the moment of death there is a kind of separation,
like birth - the metaphor is trivial, but perfect. There is a
possibility of damage or of incorrect activity. The English poet-mystic
William Blake said that as one starts into the spiral there is
the possibility of falling from the golden track into eternal
death. Yet it is only a crisis of a moment - a crisis of passage
- and the whole purpose of shamanism and of life correctly lived
is to strengthen the soul and to strengthen the ego's relationship
to the soul so that this passage can be cleanly made. This is
the traditional position.
I want to include an abyss in this model - one less familiar
to rationalists, but familiar to us all one level deeper in the
psyche as inheritors of the Judeo-Christian culture. That is
the idea that the world will end, that there will be a final
time, that there is not only the crisis of the death of the individual
but also the crisis of death in the history of the species.
What this seems to be about is that from the time of the awareness
until the resolution of the apocalyptic potential, there are
roughly one hundred thousand years. In biological time, this
is only a moment, yet it is ten times the entire span of history.
In that period, everything hangs in the balance, because it is
a mad rush from hominid to starflight. In the leap across those
one hundred thousand years, energies are released, religions
are shot off like sparks, philosophies evolve and die, science
arises, magic arises, all of these concerns that control power
with greater and lesser degrees of ethical constancy appear.
Ever present is the possibility of aborting the species' transformation
into a hyperspatial entelechy.
We are now, there can be no doubt, in the final historical
seconds of that crisis - a crisis that involves the end of history,
our departure from the planet, the triumph over death, and the
release of the individual from the body. We are, in fact, closing
distance with the most profound event a planetary ecology can
encounter - the freeing of life from the dark chrysalis of matter.
The old metaphor of psyche as the caterpillar transformed by
metamorphosis is a specieswide analogy. We must undergo a metamorphosis
in order to survive the momentum of the historical forces already
set in motion.
Evolutionary biologists consider humans to be an unevolving
species. Some time in the last fifty thousand years, with the
invention of culture, the biological evolution of humans ceased
and evolution became an epigenetic, cultural phenomenon. Tools,
languages, and philosophies began to evolve, but the human somatotype
remained the same. Hence, physically, we are very much like people
of a long time ago. But technology is the real skin of our species.
Humanity, correctly seen in the context of the last five hundred
years, is an extruder of technological material. We take in matter
that has a low degree of organization; we put it through mental
filters, and we extrude jewelry, gospels, space shuttles. This
is what we do. We are like coral animals embedded in a technological
reef of extruded psychic objects. All our tool making implies
our belief in an ultimate tool. That tool is the flying saucer,
or the soul, exteriorized in three-dimensional space. The body
can become an internalized holographic object embedded in a solid-state,
hyperdimensional matrix that is eternal, so that we each wander
through a true Elysium.
This is a kind of Islamic paradise in which one is free to
experience all the pleasures of the flesh provided one realizes
that one is a projection of a holographic solid-state matrix
that is microminiaturized, superconducting, and nowhere to be
found: it is part of the plenum. All technological history is
about producing prototypes of this situation with greater and
greater closure toward the ideal, so that airplanes, automobiles,
space shuttles, space colonies, starships of the nuts-and-bolts,
speed-of-light type are, as Mircea Eliade said, "self-transforming
images of flight that speak volumes about man's aspiration to
Our wish, our salvation, and our only hope is to end the historical
crisis by becoming the alien, by ending alienation, by recognizing
the alien as the Self, in fact - recognizing the alien as an
Overmind that holds all the physical laws of the planet intact
in the same way that one holds an idea intact in one's thoughts.
The givens that are thought to be writ in adamantine are actually
merely the moods of the Goddess, whose reflection we happen to
be. The whole meaning of human history lies in recovering this
piece of lost information so that man may be dirigible or, to
paraphrase James Joyce's Finnegans Wake on Moicane, the red light
district of Dublin: "Here in Moicane we flop on the seamy
side, but up n'ent, prospector, you sprout all your worth and
you woof your wings, so if you want to be Phoenixed, come and
be parked." It is that simple, you see, but it takes courage
to be parked when the Grim Reaper draws near. "A blessing
in disguise," Joyce calls him.
What psychedelics encourage, and where I hope attention will
focus once hallucinogens are culturally integrated to the point
where large groups of people can plan research programs without
fear of persecution, is the modeling of the after-death state.
Psychedelics may do more than model this state; they may reveal
the nature of it. Psychedelics will show us that the modalities
of appearance and understanding can be shifted so that we can
know mind within the context of the One Mind. The One Mind contains
all experiences of the Other. There is no dichotomy between the
Newtonian universe, deployed through light-years of three-dimensional
universe, and the interior mental universe. They are adumbrations
of the same thing.
We perceive them as unresolvable dualisms because of the low
quality of the code we customarily use. The language we use to
discuss this problem has built-in dualisms. This is a problem
of language. All codes have relative code qualities, except the
Logos. The Logos is perfect and, therefore, partakes of no quality
other than tiself. I am here using the word Logos in the sense
in which Philo Judaeus uses it - that of the Divine Reason that
embraces the arhcetypal complex of Platonic ideas that serve
as the models of creation. As long as one maps with something
other than the Logos, there will be problems of code quality.
The dualism built into our language makes the death of the species
and the death of the individual appear to be opposed things.
Likewise, the scenarios that biology has created through examining
the physical universe versus the angel- and demon-haunted worlds
that depth psychology is reporting is also a dichotomy. The psychedelic
experience acts to resolve this dichotomy. All that is needed
to go beyond an academic understanding of the plant hallucinogens
is the experience of the tryptamine- induced ecstasy. The dimethyltryptamine
(DMT) molecule has the unique property of releasing the structured
ego into the Overself. Each person who has that experience undergoes
a mini-apocalypse, a mini-entry and mapping into hyperspace.
For society to focus in this direction, nothing is necessary
except for this experience to become an object of general concern.
This is not to suggest that everyone should experiment with
mushrooms or other naturally occurring sources of psychoactive
tryptamines. We should try to assimilate and integrate the psychedelic
experience since it is a plane of experience that is directly
accessible to each of us. The role that we play in relationship
determines how we will present ourselves in that final, intimated
transformation. In other words, in this notion there is a kind
of teleological bias; there is abelief that there is a hyperobject
called the Overmind, or God, that casts a shadow into time. History
is our group experience of this shadow. As one draws closer and
closer to the source of the shadow, the paradoxes intensify,
the rate of change intensifies. What is happening is that the
hyperobject is beginning to ingress into three-dimensional space.
One way of thinking of this is to suppose that the waking
world and the world of the dream have begun to merge so that
in a certain sense the school of UFO criticism that has said
flying sources are hallucinations was correct in that the laws
that operate in the dream, the laws that operate in hyperspace,
can at times operate in three-dimensional space when the barrier
between the two modes becomes weak. Then one gets these curious
experiences, sometimes called psychotic breaks, that always have
a tremendous impact on the experient because there seems to be
an exterior component that could not possibly be subjective.
At such times coincidences begin to build and build until one
must finally admit that one does not know what is going on. Nevertheless,
it is preposterous to claim that this is a psychological phenomenon,
because there are accompanying changes in the external world.
Jung called this "synchronicity" and made a psychological
model of it, but it is really an alternative physics beginning
to impinge on local reality.
The alternative physics is a physics of light. Light is composed
of photons, which have no antiparticle. This means that there
is no dualism in the world of light. The conventions of relativity
say that time slows down as one approaches the speed of light,
but if one tries to imagine the point of view of a thing made
of light, one must realize that what is never mentioned is that
if one moves at the speed of light there is no time whatsoever.
There is an experience of time zero. So if one imagines for a
moment oneself to be made of light, or in possession of a vehicle
that can move at the speed of light, one can traverse from any
point in the universe to any other with a subjective experience
of time zero. This means that one crosses to Alpha Centauri in
time zero, but the amount of time that has passed in the relativistic
universe is four and a half years. But if one moves very great
distances, if one crosses two hundred and fifty thousand light-years
to Andromeda, one would still have a subjective experience of
The only experience of time that one can have is of a subjective
time that is created by one's own mental processes, but in relationship
to the Newtonian universe there is no time whatsoever. One exists
in eternity, one has become eternal, the universe is aging at
a staggering rae all around one in this situation, but that is
perceived as a fact of this universe - the way we perceive Newtonian
physics as a fact of this universe. One has transited into the
eternal mode. One is then apart from the moving image; one exists
in the completion of eternity.
I believe that this is what technology pushes toward. There
is no contradiction between ecological balance and space migration,
between hypertechnology and radical ecology. These issues are
red herrings; the real historical entity that is becoming imminent
is the human soul. The monkey body has served to carry us to
this moment of release, and it will always serve as a focus of
self-image, but we are coming more and more to exist in a world
made by the human imagination. This is what is meant by the return
to the Father, the transcendence of physis, the rising out of
the Gnostic universal prison of iron that traps the light: nothing
less than the transformation of our species.
Very shortly an acceleration of this phenomenon will take
place in the form of space exploration and space colonies. The
coral-reef-like animal called Man that has extruded technology
over the surface of the earth will be freed from the constraints
of anything but the imagination and the limitations of materials.
It has been suggested that the earlioest space colonies include
efforts to duplicate the idyllic ecosystem of Hawaii as an ideal.
These exercises in ecological understanding will prove we know
what we are doing. However, as soon as this understanding is
under control we will be released into the realm of art. This
is what we have always striven for. We will make our world -
all of our worlds - and the world we came from will be maintained
as a garden. What Eliade discussed as metaphors of self-transforming
flight will be realized shortly in the technology of space colonization.
The transition from earth to space will be a staggeringly
tight genetic filter, a much tighter filter than any previous
frontier has ever been, including the genetic and demographic
filter represented by the colonization of the New World. It has
been said that the vitality of the Americas is due to the fact
that only the dreamers and the pioneers and the fanatics made
the trip across. This will be even more true of the transition
to space. The technological conquest of space will set the stage;
then, for the internalization of that metaphor, it will bring
the conquest of inner space and the collapse of the state vectors
associated with this technology deployed in Newtonian space.
Then the human species will have become more than dirigible.
A technology that would internalize the body and exteriorize
the soul will develop parallel to the move to space. The Invisible
Landscape, a book by my brother and myself, made an effort to
short-circuit that chronology and, in a certain sense, to force
the issue. It is the story, or rather it is the intellectual
underpinnings of the story, of an expedition to the Amazon by
my brother and myself and several other people in 1971. During
that expedition, my brother formulated an idea that involved
using harmine and harmaline, compounds that occur in Banisteriopsis
caapi, the woody vine that is the basis for ayahuasca. We undertook
an effor to use harmine in conjunction with the human voice in
what we called "the experiment at La Chorrera." It
was an effort to use sound to charge the molecular structure
of harmine molecules metabolizing in the body in such a way that
they would bind preferentially and permanently with endogenous
Our candidate at the time was neural DNA, though Frank Barr,
a researcher into the properties of brain melanin, has made a
convincing case that there is as great a likelihood that harmine
acts by binding with melanin bodies. In either case, the pharmacology
involves binding with a molecular site where information is stored,
and this information is then broadcast in such a way that one
begins to get a mental readout on the structure of the soul.
Our experiment was an effort to use a kind of shamanic technology
to bell the cat, if you will, to hang a superconducting, telemetric
device on the Overmind so that there would be a continuous readout
of information from that dimension. The success or failure of
this attempt may be judged for oneself.
The first half of the book describes the theoretical underpinnings
of the experiment. The second half describes the theory of the
structure of time that derived from the bizarre mental states
that followed the experiment. I do not claim that we succeeded,
only that our theory of what happened is better than any theory
proposed by critics. Whether we succeeded or not, this style
of thinking points the way. For example, when I speak of the
technology of building a starship, I imagine it will be done
with voltages far below the voltage of a common flashlight battery.
This is, after all, where the most interesting phenomena go on
in nature. Thought is that kind of phenomenon; metabolism is
that kind of phenomenon.
A new science that places the psychedelic experience at the
center of its program of investigation should move toward a practical
realization of this goal - the goal of eliminating the barrier
between the ego and the Overself so that the ego can perceive
itself as an expression of the Overself. Then the anxiety of
facing a tremendous biological crisis in the form of the ecocrises,
and the crisis of limitation in physical space forced upon us
by our planet- bound situation, can be obviated by cultivating
the soul and by practicing a new shamanism using tryptamine-containing
Psilocybin is the most commonly available and experientially
accessible of these compounds. Therefore my plea to scientists,
administrators, and politicians who may read these words is this:
look again at psilocybin, do not confuse it with the other psychedelics,
and realize that it is a phenomenon unto itself with an enormous
potential for transforming human beings - not simply transforming
the people who take it, but transforming society in the way that
an art movement, a mathematical understanding, or a scientific
breakthrough transforms society. It holds the possibility of
transforming the entire species simply by virtue of the information
that comes through it. Psilocybin is a source of gnosis, and
the voice of gnosis has been silenced in the Western mind for
at least a thousand years.
When the Franciscans and the Dominicans arrived in Mexico
in the sixteenth century, they immediately set about stamping
out the mushroom religion. The Indians called it teonanacatl,
"the flesh of the gods." The Catholic church had a
monopoly on theophagia and was not pleased by this particular
approach to what was going on. Now, four hundred years after
that initial contact, I suggest that Eros, which retreated from
Europe with the rise of Christianity, retreated to the mountains
of the Sierra Mazateca. Finally, pushed into seclusion there,
it now reemerges in Western consciousness.
Our institutions, our epistemologies are bankrupt and exhausted;
we must start anew and hope that with the help of shamanically
inspired personalities, we can cultivate this ancient mystery
once again. The Logos can be unleashed, and the voice that spoke
to Plato and Parmenides and Heraclitus can speak again in the
minds of modern people. When it does, the alienation will be
ended because we will have become the alien. This is the promise
that is held out; it may seem to some a nightmare vision, but
all historical changes of immense magnitude have a charged emotional
quality. They propel people into a completely new world.
I believe that this work must be done using hallucinogens.
Traditionally it has been thought that there were many paths
to spiritual advancement. In this matter I must fall back on
personal experience. I have not had good results with any other
techniques. I spent time in India, practiced yoga, visited among
the various rishis, roshis, geysheys, and gurus that Asia had
to offer, and I believe they must be talking about something
so pale and removed from closure with the full tryptamine ecstasy
that I don't really know what to make of them and their wan hierophanies.
Tantra claims to be another approach. Tantra means "the
short-cut path," and certainly it might be on the right
track. Sexuality, orgasm, these things do have tryptaminelike
qualities to them, but the difference between psilocybin and
all other hallucinogens is information - immense amounts of information.
LSD seemed somehow to be largely related to the structure
of the personality. Often it seemed to me the visions were merely
geometric patterns unless synergized by another compound. The
classic psychedelic experience that was written about by Aldous
Huxley was two hundred micrograms of LSD and thirty milligrams
of mescaline. That combination delivers a visionary experience
rather than an experience of hallucinations. In my opinion the
unique quality of psilocybin is that it reveals not colored lights
and moving grids, but places - jungles, cities, machines, books,
architectonic forms of incredible complexity. There is no possibility
that this could be construed as neurological noise of any sort.
It is, in factm the most highly ordered visual information that
one can experience, much more highly ordered than the normal
That's why it's very hard with psychedelic compounds to bring
back information. These things are hard to English because it
is like trying to make a three-dimensional rendering of a fourth-dimensional
object. Only through the medium of sight can the true modality
of this Logos be perceived. That is why it is so interesting
that psilocybin and ayahuasca - the aboriginal tryptamine-containing
brew - both produce a telepathic experience and a shared state
of mind. The unfolding group hallucination is shared in complete
silence. It's hard to prove this to a scientist, but if several
people share such an experience, one person can describe it and
then cease the monologue and another person may then take it
up. Everyone is seeing the same thing! It is the quality of being
complex visual information that makes the Logos a vision of a
truth that cannot be told.
The information thus imparted is not, however, merely restricted
to the mode of seeing. The Logos is capable of going from a thing
heard to a thing seen, without ever crossing through a discernible
transition point. This seems a logical impossibility; yet when
one actually has the experience, one sees - aha! - it is as though
thought that is heard does become something seen. The thought
that is heard becomes more and more intense until, finally, its
intensity is such that, with no transition, one is now beholding
it in three-dimensional, visual space. One commands it. This
is very typical of psilocybin.
Naturally, whenever a compound is introduced into the body,
one must exercise caution and be well informed with regard to
possible side effects. Professional psychedelic investigators
are aware of these factors and freely acknowledge that the obligation
to be well informed is of primary importance.
Speaking for myself, let me say that I am not an abuser. It
takes me a long time to assimilate each visionary experience.
I have never lost my respect for these dimensions. Dread is one
of the emotions that I feel as I approach the experience. Psychedelic
work is like sailing out onto a dark ocean in a little skiff.
One may view the moon rising serenely over the calm black water,
or something the size of a freight train may roar right through
the scene and leave one clinging at an oar.
The dialogue with the other is what makes repetition of these
experiences seem worthwhile. The mushroom speaks to you when
you speak to it. In the introduction to the book that my brother
and I wrote (under pseudonyms) called Psilocybin: Magic Mushroom
Grower's Guide, there is a mushroom monologue that goes: "I
am old, fifty times older than thought in your species, and I
came from the stars." Sometimes it's very human. My approach
to it is Hasidic. I rave at it; it raves at me. We argue about
what it is going to cough up and what it isn't. I say, "Well,
look, I'm the propagator, you can't hold back on me," and
it says, "But if I showed you the flying saucer for five
minutes, you would figure out how it works," and I say,
"Well, come through." It has many manifestations. Sometimes
it's like Dorothy of Oz; sometimes it's like a very Talmudic
sort of pawnbroker. I asked it once, "What are you doing
on Earth?" It said, "Listen, if you're a mushroom,
you live cheap; besides, I'm telling you, this was a very nice
neighborhood until the monkeys got out of control."
"Monkeys out of control:" that is the mushroom voice's
view of history. To us, history is something very different.
History is the shock wave of eschatology. In other words, we
are living in a very unique moment, ten or twenty thousand years
long, where an immense transition is happening. The object at
the end of and beyond history is the human species fused into
eternal tantric union with the superconducting Overmind/UFO.
It is that mystery that casts its shadow back through time. All
religion, all philosophy, all wars, pogroms, and persecutions
happen because people do not get the message right. There is
both the forward-flowing casuistry of being, causal determinism,
and the interference pattern that is formed against that by the
backward-flowing fact of this eschatological hyperobject throwing
its shadow across the temporal landscape. We exist, yet there
is a great deal of noise. This situation called history is totally
unique; it will last only a moment, it began a moment ago. In
that moment there is a tremendous burst of static as the monkey
goes to godhood, as the final eschatological object mitigates
and transforms the forward flow of entropic circumstance.
Life is central to the career of organization in matter. I
reject the idea that we have been shunted onto a siding called
organic existence and that our actual place is in eternity. This
mode of existence is an important part of the cycle. It is filter.
There is the possibility of extinction, the possibility of falling
into physis forever, and so in that sense the metaphor of the
fall is valid. There is a spiritual obligation, there is a task
to be done. It is not, however, something as simple as following
a set of somebody else's rules. The noetic enterprise is a primary
obligation toward being. Our salvation is linked to it. Not everyone
has to read alchemical texts or study superconducting biomolecules
to make the transition. Most people make it naively by thinking
clearly about the present at hand, but we intellectuals are trapped
in a world of too much information. Innocence is gone for us.
We cannot expect to cross the rainbow bridge through a good act
of contrition; that will not be sufficient.
We have to understand. Whitehead said, "Understanding
is the apperception of pattern as such;" to fear death is
to misunderstand life. Cognitive activity is the defining act
of humanness. Language, thought, analysis, art, dance, poetry,
mythmaking: these are the things that point the way toward the
realm of the eschaton. We humans may be released into a realm
of pure self-engineering. The imagination is everything. This
was Blake's perception. This is where we came from. This is where
we are going. And it is only to be approached through cognitive
Time is the notion that gives ideas such as these their power,
for they imply a new conception of time. During the experiment
at La Chorrera, the Logos demonstrated that time is not simply
a homogeneous medium where things occur, but a fluctuating density
of probability. Though science can sometimes tell us what can
happen and what cannot happen, we have no theory that explains
why, out of everything that could happen, certain things undergo
what Whitehead called "the formality of actually occurring."
This was what the Logos sought to explain, why out of all the
myriad things that could happen, certain things undergo the formality
of occurring. It is because there is a modular hierarchy of waves
of temporal conditioning, or temporal density. A certain event,
rated highly improbable, is more probable at some moments than
Taking that simple perception and being led by the Logos,
I was able to construct a fractal model of time that can be programmed
on a computer and that gives a map of the ingression of what
I call "novelty" - the ingression of novelty into time.
As a general rule, novelty is obviously increasing. It has been
since the very beginning of the universe. Immediately following
the Big Bang there was only the possibility of nuclear interaction,
and then, as temperatures fell below the bond strength of the
nucleus, atomic systems could be formed. Still later, as temperatures
fell further, molecular systems appeared. Then much later, life
became possible; then very complex life forms evolved, thought
became possible, culture was invented. The invention of printing
and electronic information transfer occurred.
What is happening to our world is ingression of novelty toward
what Whitehead called "concrescence," a tightening
gyre. Everything is flowing together. The "autopoetic lapis,"
the alchemical stone at the end of time, coalesces when everything
flows together. When the laws of physics are obviated, the universe
disappears, and what is left is the tightly bound plenum, the
monad, able to express itself for itself, rather than only able
to cast a shadow into physis as its reflection. I come very close
here to classical millenarian and apocalyptic thought in my view
of the rate at which change is accelerating. From the way the
gyre is tightening, I predict that concrescence will occur soon
- around 2012 A.D. It will be the entry of our species into hyperspace,
but it will appear to be the end of physical laws accompanied
by the release of the mind into the imagination.
All these images - the starship, the space colony, the lapis
- are precursory images. They follow naturally from the idea
that history is the shock wave of eschatology. As closes distance
with the eschatological object, the reflections it is throwing
off resemble more and more the thing itself. In the final moment
the Unspeakable stands revealed. There are no more reflections
of the Mystery. The Mystery in all its nakedness is seen, and
nothing else exists. But what it is, decency can safely scarcely
hint; nevertheless, it is the crowning joy of futurism to seek
anticipation of it.
Uncle Taz Library
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