The Substance

5 posts


Interesting movie. What's the point you're trying to drive home @ 1:20:16? There's no god because some guy tripping on a hallucinogen didn't get an answer from Him when he called out? Or maybe that hallucinogens are not a good way to reach God?

Meister Eckhart says there are three obstacles to the knowledge of God. The first obstacle is that the self is not one with itself. It is always divided when it attaches to corporeal things. The second obstacle is time. "Nothing hinders the soul's knowledge of God as much as time and space, for time and space are fragments, whereas God is one. And therefore if the soul is to know God, it must know him above time and outside space; for God is neither this nor that as are all those manifested things." The third is identification of the self with the creature, i.e. the empirical ego.

LSD conduces to unitive knowledge of the Godhead, first, by abolishing the distinction between Self and not-self, and of the ego as a centre or source of action (ego death); second, by raising the Self above all passing and corporeal things; and last, by transcendence of space and time. These are the basic goals of meditation, contemplative prayer, and other religious practices. LSD just happens to be more effective.

By the way, I don't think the word 'hallucinogens' is an accurate term for psychedelic substances. The primary effects are not hallucinatory -- increased empathy, enhanced creativity, deep introspective reflection, reliving old memories or participation in archetypal dramas, loss of the unity of body and self, religious exultation, ecstatic union with the Godhead, etc.

Maybe he didn't think he needed God, because knowing God is concurrent with realizing that everything of yours, your life, the universe comes from God. LSD, like anything else, is just a means, fated among all the other swirling elements to do one thing or another, according to the will of God... I took LSD and mushrooms a fair number of times in my early teens, and I never found God.

LSD is a catalyst, not an agonist of mystical experience, and it is only effective in relatively high dosages.