(Filmed at Powell’s City of Books - Portland, OR - Monday, January 18)
Recent Interview with Paul
Click here to see the full interview.
The Enlightened Madness of Philip K. Dick: The Black Iron Prison and Wetiko
Recently, I have been delighted to learn that the science fiction author Philip K. Dick (henceforth PKD) was, in his own completely unique and “Philip K. Dickian” way describing wetiko—the psycho-spiritual disease that afflicts our species—to a T. Considered to be one of the pre-eminent sci-fi writers of his—or any—time, PKD had one of the most unique, creative, unusual and original minds I have ever come across. Way ahead of his time, he was a true visionary and seer, possibly even a prophet. To say that PKD had an unfettered imagination is an understatement of epic proportions—it is hard to imagine an imagination more unrestrained. Continually questioning everything, he was actually a very subtle thinker whose prime concern was the question “What is reality?” Though mainly a writer of fiction, PKD didn’t consider himself a novelist, but rather, a “fictionalizing philosopher,” by which he meant that his stories—what have been called “his wacky cauldron of science fiction and metaphysics”—were employed as the medium for him to formulate his perceptions. In other words, his fiction was the way he was trying to figure out what was going on in this crazy world of ours, as well as within his own mind. As the boundary dissolved between what was real and what wasn’t, he even wondered whether he had become a character in one of his own novels (in his own words, “I’m a protagonist from one of PKD’s books”). Through his writing, PKD tapped into the shamanic powers of language to shape, bend and alter consciousness, thereby changing our view and experience of reality itself…[more]
When we recognize that we live in a magic-filled universe, we realize that we don’t have to create magic, but rather, simply allow the intrinsic magic of the universe to reveal itself. If this is indeed the case, let’s do an experiment, and see if in the joint co-operative venture of writing (my job) and reading (your job) this article, we can indeed let the inherent magic of the universe shine through our shared endeavor. In my career as a writer I have learned that when an article I am working on is birthing itself into form, at a certain point the universe itself always seems to step in and “conspire” (which literally means “to breathe together”) with the article, infusing it with an energy that I am not able to supply by my lonesome self…[more]
When the Most Awake Among Us Fall Asleep:
Marc Gafni, His Supporters and Wetiko
In early 2016 a controversy swirling around a charismatic spiritual teacher with a long history of abuse allegations grabbed my attention due to its over-the-top craziness. The more deeply I investigated the situation the more my mind was blown. The teacher’s name is Marc Gafni and he has attracted a remarkable number of renowned leaders defending him as well as many major figures condemning him. A recent spate of publicity, including a 2015 Christmas day article in the New York Times, has brought this situation, to evoke the Academy Award winning movie, into the “spotlight” … [more]
The Mind Parasites of Colin Wilson:
Fiction or Reality?
It should get our attention that every person or group of people that have discovered what the Native American people called wetiko unanimously consider it to be the most important topic—there’s not even any competition—to understand in our world today. In addition to independent researchers like myself, many artists have also been creatively and imaginatively expressing the insidious workings of wetiko psychosis in a wide variety of mediums. Oftentimes creative artists are the canaries in the coal-mine of humanity’s psyche, presciently giving communicable form to what is emerging within the collective unconscious of our species. To use one example: Colin Wilson, in “the supernatural metaphysical cult thriller” The Mind Parasites, first published in 1967, is using the fictive power of the literary imagination to give living form to this virus of the mind. I am so accustomed to writing about wetiko “non-fictionally,” that the idea of approaching it through the made-up medium of fiction, i.e., through creative art that isn’t as “serious” as nonfiction, opens up new orders of freedom within my soul. Wetiko can be likened to a “bug” that hampers the creative imagination—potentially even “killing” it, if it’s even possible to talk in such fatalistic terms about imagination—which is to say that it makes sense to use the creative imagination as a way of dealing with its imagination-killing effects…. [more]
Paul on On the Block Radio
On February 24th, Paul was interviewed by Andrew Gurevich for On the Block Radio. To visit the On the Block page for this interview with Paul: click here. To listen to the interview at SoundCloud: click here.
The discoveries of quantum physics throw physicists back upon themselves. To quote physicist Freeman Dyson, “My message is that science is a human activity, and the best way to understand it is to understand the individual human beings who practice it.” Quantum physics’ realizations about the nature of elementary particles are a magic mirror reflecting something back to us not just about nature, but about our nature. It is in this sense that quantum physics becomes indistinguishable from a form of metaphysics. To quote Erwin Schrödinger, one of the founding fathers of quantum physics, “I consider science an integrating part of our endeavor to answer the one great philosophical question which embraces all others, the one that Plotinus expressed by his brief: who are we? And more than that: I consider this not only one of the tasks, but the task, of science, the only one that really counts.” … [more]
On the Road to the Olympia Sync Summit
The Physics of Dreaming
For the last few months, all I’ve wanted to do is to read about quantum physics. I’ve been studying quantum physics off and on for decades, but have never gone as far down the rabbit hole as I have this time. It feels like I’ve gone through the looking glass to the point of no return. The more I contemplate what quantum physics is telling us, the more my mind gets blown into phantasmal traces of nonexistent subatomic particles. Studying quantum theory is like ingesting a mind-altering, time-release psychedelic. Taking in what quantum physics is revealing to us about the universe we inhabit is “psycho-activating” beyond belief, in that it activates the psyche, inspires the imagination and synchronistically dissolves the boundary between mind and matter. To say that quantum physics is the greatest scientific discovery of all time is not an exaggeration; its profound revelations and implications cannot be overstated. In discovering the quantum, physics has indisputably encountered consciousness, there is simply no avoiding this fact. Quantum theory demands a radical re-visioning of the role that consciousness plays in the unfolding of reality. Quantum physics is pointing out, in unequivocal terms, that the study of the universe and the study of consciousness are inseparably linked, and that ultimate progress in the one will be impossible without progress in the other…[more]