Evolver Spore: The Future of Psychedelics

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A lecture given on March 17, 2010 to the Sydney cell of the Evolver network (www.evolver.net) as part of its community "spore" discussion on the future of psychedelics. In which experiential journalist Rak Razam discusses the state of psychedelic culture, where it came from in modern times with the advent of LSD in 1943, the legacy of alchemist Albert Hofmann, and why the psychedelic movement is so important to a sustainable future. Acid opened the mind in the 60s, ecstasy opened the heart in the 80s, and in the 21st century ayahuasca and entheogenic plant sacraments are opening the soul of the West, guiding us back to a cooperative Gaian partnership. As the "second wave of ayahuasca shamanism" sweeps the world in a slo-mo r-evolution, the psychedelic movement is reaching out to the elder indigenous cultures around the world to bridge the gap of our own psychic and spiritual understanding, and is becoming a global entheogenic movement. Can this new wave reach a critical mass of its own understanding, as well as a purity of intent to truly be ready to join the galactic community? Join Razam and the Evolver community to find out...

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Verb Studio Showreel > by Tim Parish

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Avatar Opens a Pandora's Box > Nick Chesterfield

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 Avatar Opens a Pandora's Box Reminiscent of Papua > by  Nick Chesterfield

“The smell was of death and dying.  Everywhere was black and my people were crying.  Our sacred trees were falling, brutal alien men were driving massive yellow machines through our land and waters, taking our trees,  we were being herded out... Soldiers were firing at anything that moved, as helicopters were flying over what was left of our home, sending sheets of fire to burn everything... My mother died, my father died.

“All I have left is a memory of my home, and my sister alongside me today in this limbo... So of course I must go back and fight.  I was born as a warrior, even if I die early as one, I am still fighting for my people’s grandchildren.  These Garudas will eat every last one of us unless our poison arrows go for the heart of their greed. We must drive those aliens out, and remind them that THIS IS OUR LAND.”

Is this a key scene James Cameron’s much talked about epic Avatar?  No, it is a description from a refugee student (let’s call him Melkias for his safety), of the situation that forced his flight from the Pandora of this planet, West Papua.  Interviewing him in a PNG border camp in May 2006, Melkias was describing to me what happened when a logging company, backed and run by the Indonesian military, started clearing out local people from the Boven Digul border area.

“They destroyed their Earth, so now they are coming destroy ours, “Melkias said in an eerie allegory to the undercurrent to the Avatar story.  Papua was one of the last areas of paradise forest left on our planet, but just like Pandora it is home to natural resources that those who want it will stop at nothing to get.

In A Perfect World > Digital Networks & Social Media > with Rak Razam and Jenny Ryan

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On the road to Burning Man in a Toyota Prius with Rak Razam and radical cyber anthropologist Jenny Ryan (aka Tuna Bananas), research assistant to media pundit Howard Rhinegold (The Virtual Community and Smart Mobs). Jenny discusses cyber literacy, smart mobs and virtual communities with experiential journalist Rak Razam... How do we use technology to form communities and conduct virtual everyday social interactions? Does social networking keep the drones sedate and make us good workers? Or does Super-poking and quiz sharing provide a social glue for online communities? Where does the drift towards hive mind collectivism in the human matrix being able to laterally recognize itself – an ambient awareness – lead us? What role does the ego play in blogging and lifestreaming? And as social tribes grow, does it increase our pool of knowledge and ability to draw upon the wisdom of the collective? Or is it all an Orwellian marketing wet dream? The intent behind technology makes all the difference... *warning* some scratchy wind muffles about 20 minutes in... the perils of experiential podcasting...

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Cosmic Trance, the Hero’s Journey and the Overview Effect > Graham St John

Lately, I’ve been hearing a lot of voices ….

Like “we journey from ignorance to knowledge. Growth reflects the advancement of the species. The exploration of the cosmos is a voyage of self-discovery.”

I heard it on Cosmosis' “Self-Discovery” on Fumbling For The Funky Frequency (2009).

It was Carl Sagan, lifted from the TV Series Cosmos.

Other voices I’ve been getting are right out of the history of science fiction cinema and, further out... from astronauts participating in NASA's Apollo Space Programme.

They are the (male) voices that together speak the tongue of cosmic trance – which is the heart of the Goa trance phenomenon - and remnant within psytrance. They are the voices of a psychedelic astrofuturism, in which Space Age mediations have been intercepted by sonic and visionary artists repurposing popular culture in the pursuit of progressive evolutionism.

But don't let me get too far ahead of myself...

Monkey & Sardine > music by Martin Martini > video by Jim Batts

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The Transition Decade > A Shared Campaign

THE TRANSITION DECADE is a 10 year social and structural transition that enables the restoration of a safe climate.This is a short film which outlines the 'Transition' movements vision, and how it can be achieved in Australia. 

In A Perfect World > Blotter Art & The Institute of Illegal Images > with Rak Razam

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An illuminating interview into the world's first edible art...

In conversation with Mark McCloud, acid blotter art historian and 60s archivist in his home in the Mission district of San Francisco, August, 2009. In which experiential podcaster Rak Razam learns from the master about the colorful and mind-expanding history of blotter art, from the early acid chemist oufits like the "Ghost" and the underground crews that ran the business of enlightenment.


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TEMPLE VISIONS > interview with Jimmy Bleyer> by Tim Parish

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'The Shaman' by Amanda Sage



Image: The Shaman, by Amanda Sage

Deep within the concrete heart of downtown Los Angeles, I recently met Jimmy Bleyer, a wizard in the form of an art curator who is behind the Temple Of Visions, a new multi-arts space that opened January 9th. It will be the first gallery dedicated totally to the emerging contemporary Visionary Art culture here in the City of Angels.

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Stalactites Vs. Stalagmites




I consider it significant that most of us find it impossible not to overeat at Christmas time. Likewise, we cannot avoid company on New Year’s Eve. It could be a proverb. Just try it—and afterwards, ask yourself whether you believe in free will. Look at all the women lined up and packing the halls in shopping centres before Christmas, purchasing last-minute presents for their kids and relatives. They are sweating in trolley jams. Their money drains away as their stress levels rise. There must be an enormous percentage of people who dread the festive season, yet they keep participating. Why? Don’t tell me it is free will.