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Posts Tagged ‘pkd’

3.

PKD realized this world is deranged, to the point it destroys any attempts to heal it. But the physician (the plasmate) is moved by love, and risks all to plant the seeds of knowledge: that this psychosomatic illness is easily treated, once one becomes aware of what it is that is really wrong. The homoplasmate enables healing, at least among those who seek it, desire it, allow it. It is the anti-virus, the meta-virus. It is the outstretched hand of the universe, eternally waiting for a response to its invitation. It is beauty. It is love. It is the physician. It is what enables us to put the pieces (of the Deranged Mind) back together. From the disparate pieces emerges the One, the All, the Light. The heavenly chorus sings Hallelujah; the golden cords illuminated stretch from each of us, to each of us. We become connected—online, mechanomorphically speaking.

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Yup'ik shaman exorcising evil spirits from a sick boy, Nushagak, Alaska, 1890s

Traditionally, a culture’s shaman is the neurotechnician of a tribe. A shaman is the bridge between the physical world and the spiritual world, the psychopomp of mystical journeys. Often a shaman will induce a trance, either through the use of psychoactive drugs (traditionally this means anything from ayahuasca, to marijuana, to DMT, and to the many fungal avenues of pharmakognosis such peyote, amanita muscaria, ergot, etc.) or physical methods such as throat singing, fasting, dancing, flagellation, etc. In some traditional cultures, the entire tribe goes on a vision quest together, everyone from babies to the elderly. As the shaman Bear Heart asserts, “Peyote is used for healing. Our people say we don’t hallucinate with peyote; rather we see visions that teach us.”

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"Consulting the Oracle" by John William Waterhouse, showing eight priestesses in a temple of prophecy

In America, we have words to describe the experience of hearing voices: wacko, delusional, crazy, schizoid, etc. To hear a voice speaking to you, whether out loud or in one’s mind, is not allowed. Hearing voices, especially those of God, is viewed as insanity within the rational paradigm that provides the framework for everyday life. To talk about such insanity is to open one’s self up for a trip to the loony bin and forced medications. As Horselover Fat made note of his crack-up theophany in Philip K. Dick’s novel Valis, “When you are crazy you learn to keep quiet.” However, hearing a voice might be more common than you may think. Just because no one talks about it doesn’t make it a false reality. As psychologist philosopher Paul Watzlawick remarked,

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