One man, tired of archaic laws, speaks to us about his next move, Josh returns to share some more poetic vision and some friendly sonic maestros share their tunes!
Released October 16th 2012
One of the core points that a journalist learns, like most people writing something for others, is that the first few words, the beginning is most important to captivate the viewer, listener or reader.
Although often we hear that one should not judge a book by its cover, there is so much information in the world for our brains to digest that it is inevitable that one must judge a book by its cover, so to say, in order to make their best use of time. Using a collaboration of this fact and some other aggregated social data on cultural norms of a time, a journalist can learn, whether consciously or unconsciously that a more provocative or sensational headline will drag in more people. Here it becomes a little tricky, because how can an observer possibly quantify the aggregated social data on cultural norms, when much of this is informal data, based on cumulative and causative interactions with all other humans within communicative distance? This is my challenge. I was recently quoted in the Sydney Morning Herald in an article on LSD. The journalist, Peter Munro had my contact details still from a discussion we had several years ago for an article on legal highs. The article is provocatively entitled, “A new generation takes the acid test” a reference to the Grateful Dead concert series in which LSD was handed out to patrons, although I get the feeling Munro was perhaps aiming more at the, “Drugs are risky, therefore you shouldn’t take them” argument. The article is subtitled, “Use of hallucinogens is on the rise, worrying experts”.
Run for the hills! The YOLO generation are gettin on acid, don’t care about tomorrow and experts are really WORRIED!
The experts, from what I can asatain from the article, are, Director of Drug and Alcohol Research Training Australia, Paul Dillon, Director of the St. Vincent Hospital emergency department, Dr. Gordian Fulde, who you may remember for an earlier episode of Enpsychedelia for claiming that Ayahuasca causes brain damage, and NSW drug squad intelligent manager Claire Rickards.
Dillon does not indicate concern as the article title suggests, other than quoting one young teenager who said that, “We are the YOLO generation” a reference meaning You Only Live Once that apparently has become the ethos of people I have never met or seen, but which is a point that obviously appeals to journalist Munro, as he uses this young kids throw away comment to generalise an entire generation. Dr. Fulde indicates concern over hallucinogens, noting that, “You can walk in front of cars or off buildings”. Dare I suggest that an ER manager approaching the media with ridiculous, unfounded and naive scare messages does nothing useful for anyone, and his time may be better spent else where? Perhaps reading some science or speaking to some non-journalist type people every now and then? Rickards’ comments are the most indicative that perhaps Munro has slightly exaggerated his point for another piece of tired, unintelligent drug rhetoric. Rickards notes that police detections of hallucinogens are up from 95 in 2008 to 175 last year. She then goes on to say that this may be due to better record keeping and that it is a “very, very small problem”.
Out of three experts, only one had any evidence of need for concern, and she dismissed it as potentially a statistical anomally, and most certainly not a big problem. Please read the article yourself and take what you will from it. As disappointed as I am that Munro took a tired angle from the book of rhetoric-driven news and employed some heavy quote mining to fill a template, rather than really listen to his interviewees and let them tell the story, I am not put off speaking to main stream media. One thing you have to understand is… illegal drugs still have an incredible amount of taboo. Taboo breeds myth, ignorance and irrational fear. If someone doesn’t know about a topic, they will resort to their framework of fear and prejudice in order to ignore and demonise the topic. It is not entirely the individual’s fault. But, it is our fault if we then become defensive and decide not to talk to the people that most need a reasoned discussion.
I believe that through discussing things politely and passionately and most importantly, sharing our own stories, we better help each other to understand. The jigsaw puzzle doesn’t fit together if you all hide your pieces away.
Asiro – Chronicles of the MindMelt
17 year old experimental beatmaker from Melbourne who’s been making beats for 3 months
Part of Indelible Niche Collective, DaP Station and AsiroLotus.
This is cynical me speaking optimistically,
So much to say, so much has been said… so this up and comer will commence his comments…
Spitting one for the common unity, come on, you can see the community is in need of healing and immunity from the sim city scenery we see ceaselessly.
Let those who control our consciousness or those profiting off this mess at everyone’s expense… get their comeuppance
get off the tuffet , whether eating curds and whey or silver spoon fed, cos the rivers run red with all our blood tears and sweat.
Welcome to this… The season of our discontent.
When we can’t afford our homes hope you can find discount tents,
for this conscience is conscious and intense, I’m past tense and hence am continuing on to greener pastures, just to be content.
For this continent has lost itself to continence, from holding back its shit.
Conned and spent with the content, continually like applying condiments to counter commonplace cuisine commonly cold countenance hide our impenetrable dreams even concinnity considered counter culture, conciliatory in penitentiaries it seems, circled by the vultures high beams
this mental mulch has become obscene not to mention the vocabulary, someone mumbled from the mob team.
Lately I been seen feeding my brain out in forests… for rest and mental sustenance, I attest.
Humbled is me with the dreamers of dreams.
See, drained and demeaned were we the weary. With dreary demeanor, dear me was almost dearly deceiving, believe me i was disheveled.
But no more need to dissemble. This semblance will not advance me. I will endeavor to sever from insanity. Seven heavens awaits me.
Fate has tempted me to speak what I see, so this declarant rants in honor of the sombre trance… but the ambivalence that resides high over commonsense must end. Our silence to the violence, the denial of our brilliance.
I felt it too, I won’t lie, I’ve felt dismembered from the burning ember in the sky to the point I wanna hide.
But now i wanna fly in the night, a fly knight play fighting with kites, alight right exactly where I wanna take my life, that’d be alright, shake the plight, apply myself right up high my selfs light, like high elves, on shelves I lack delight lackluster luckless and full of fright.
Fuck that for a joke that ain’t my plight.
I’m more of a map light – a light house, that’s my life.
A cartographer, a graphic fucking calculator…
A grappling hook that you can use to move yourself, right
but don’t abuse that, this light that soothes will burn bright then burn out.. this routine is called life.
The route to cold eyes is to ignore your roots and focus on the lines that lie on your face like wrinkled love letters left to time
or plants left to die it plans to retire to dust dirt and grit in the bland sands of time.
The blanched hands that climb through parched lands do find the fine and divine.
It always aligns with a mind that searches sublime.
It’s worth it, this Earth is the birthplace of our learning
so go digging for wisdom, get dirt under fingernails…
Figure out pi and phi hell figure out the square root of 5.
Climb trees, metaphorically so you can see more than you can see.
Elated self, enlighten the frightened self!
Delight the populace to reprise the simple pleasure of being alive.
A life is no lie, you’re here until you leave that takes no belief
be life or be grief.
Brief though our sojourn,
It’s not to late to U-turn,
When you turn to utopia you burn brighter than suns,
Leave dis dystopia enter our aria of the real
and euphoria you will feel…
Mortisville – The Goose (Woohoo Revue Remix)
Emanating from the wild and depraved citadel of Brighton, Mortisville landed in Australia with the mischievous intent of bringing his city’s own debaucherous brand of speakeasy and Electro Swing to the Antipodes.
Having witnessed the genre grow and flourish in his home town, Mortisville sought to recreate the 1920’s and 30’s madness in Australia. 18 months on, after rip-roaring sets at Rainbow, Shine On, Culture Jam, Royal Doof, Wide Open Space, Hellzapoppin & countless huge Warehouse Party’s’, His dastardly mission has been an unbridled success. Mortisville is now embarking on collaborations with a number prestigious artists including Melbourne band The Woohoo Revue and many more to be revealed soon!
As a DJ Mortisville has embraced a genre that is constantly expanding, taking elements of balkan, breaks, dubstep and even drum and bass into new and exciting realms. The one thing you can be sure of from a Mortisville set is that it will have you up and dancing before you can say swing it!
Mortisville is the co founder of Hellzapoppin’ a new and successful speakeasy based in Melbourne, that couples Electro Swing and burlesque with International Acts such as White Mink and Sound Nomaden and Melbourne Live bands such as Woohoo Revue 8 Foot Felix and Tek Tek.
Elix Krovvy – Spiral NONsense
Exploring the divine links between psychedelic mind states, twisting tempos, and strange sounds in a neuro-sonic adventure.
HUNGER STRIKE! – Greg Kasarik Interview
Nick: We’re recording live from Origins of Consciousness, the Melbourne step of the tour. The first day, lecture day has just finished, there are workshops tomorrow and I’m sitting here now with a man named Greg. Around the world, various plants and substances have been used by cultures going back to the dawn of humanity to experience altered consciousness and often divine experience. Today, western governments narrowly define and understand these plants and substances as generally bad. In fact, most of the plants and substances humans have used for divine revelation, transcendence or spiritual exploration for millenia – safely – are considered under Australian drug scheduling to be, and I quote from the schedule, “Substances that may be abused or misused”. The schedule is vague and gives no room for use outside of a rigidly controlled, Commonwealth approved regime.
Greg Kasarik has completed two degrees, in arts and science and has been pursuing counselling and community support work in recent times. Greg is also a self-described mystic and uses what he calls transcendent compounds for his own religious practice. On his website, kasarik.com he details his thoughts and beliefs. Although Greg is not bringing harm to anyone else and is in fact working to personally enrich his life… he is breaking the law every time he introduces a transcendent compound or ‘drug of dependence’ according to Victorian law, into his body. On November 14th, Greg, who has contacted politicians, media and police regarding his use and continued desire to use these substances, will begin a hunger strike in the Melbourne city Bourke Street Mall. Greg, welcome to Enpsychedelia.
Greg: Thank you for having me here.
Nick: So, ‘Transcendent compounds’, just to clear up this term, could you specify?
Greg: This is a term that I coined myself, because I wasn’t particularly happy with the other ones out there. Effectively, a transcendent compound is an entheogen, so most of us are aware that they allow you to connect with the divine, but it’s also an entheogen that is non-addictive, non-toxic and psychologically safe in appropriate dose, set and setting. So the transcendent compounds that we’re normally familiar with are the ones that are mainstream in the entheogenic community, are mescaline, psilocybin, LSD and DMT and Ayahuasca. Ones that are excluded are cannabis and things like ketamine.
Nick: What are some of the primary experiences that you’ve had with transcendent compounds… are there any that particularly stand out?
Greg: Look, there are lots that stand out, but to be honest, as anyone who’s ever experienced a mystical state will tell you, it’s impossible to describe. The clearest way I suppose of describing it in broad terms is transcendent mystical states, so feelings of connection with the divine, feelings of timelessness. For example, one time when I felt time just stop, and I saw myself as an eternal being throughout time, and how various decisions I had made have orientated myself to be who I am today and leading the life that I am today.
Nick: How do you feel that those kind of experiences help you in your everyday life?
Greg: How it helps me is to do with questions of meaning, to do with allowing me to figure out how the Universe may operate, and I think one of the things that is interesting got mentioned a number of times today was what I call the Uncertainty Principle, which is the first of my own principles. Basically the uncertainty principle says that you can never know what the hell is going on. The idea for any person isn’t to believe what I believe, and I think it’s actually abhorrent for me to be trying to tell other people to believe what I believe, the idea is for people to be figuring it out for themselves. The good thing about these compounds is they do a very good job of allowing you to think outside the square, in particular I’m fascinated by mathematics, I’m not actually a mathematician at all myself, but I spend a lot of time contemplating the infinite. I think you can’t understand the divine unless you understand the infinite. These compounds allow me to connect in a very real sense with concepts that are infinite in nature and I can’t describe them in reality let alone mathematically, but basically the compounds allow me to step outside myself and to run with concepts and run with ideas.
Nick: It sounds like it’s helping you to give yourself context… I mean, philosophers since forever, thinking types or anyone have been trying to figure out what the Human is, what the World is, what Reality is and it’s helping you to sort of form a connective basis for that, a framework.
Greg: You mentioned philosophy and one of the majors I did in that Arts degree you mentioned is actually philosophy. So I’m coming from a background of western philosophy but also a background of western religion as well. One of the things I find fascinating as well is that I’ll read something from one of the eastern traditions and it’ll pretty much match up with things that I’ve come up with myself through my own mystical experiences. To me that’s incredible validation. Basically these compounds allow you to think about things, get context and figure the world out for yourself, in a way that you can’t do otherwise outside of lots of meditation and mystical experience gained some other way.
Nick: November 14th is when the hunger strike kicks off, can you detail the legal side of this relating to practicing of religion, because I understand you have a bit of an argument there.
Greg: To provide a bit of context, I went public about my use of these compounds two years ago, 18 months ago I contacted all the federal members of parliament and all the state members of parliament and a couple of dozen media figures and even the Chief Commissioner of the Federal Police and basically said, “I use these compounds and I do so for religious and cultural purposes.” The main off-shoot of that was that I just got ignored and that’s pretty much where I’ve been for the last 18 months. People might be a bit surprised to hear that I actually contacted members of the parliament and I haven’t been arrested, I haven’t been interviewed by police and I came out and I said, “I use these compounds and I reserve the right to use these compounds and I also reserve the right to introduce other people into the use of these compounds…
Nick: That’s very subversive of you…
Greg: But, imagine what would happen if I did the same with heroin. My feet wouldn’t have touched the ground before I was in an interview room in a police station somewhere. The police and the government obviously know that they can’t just arrest me, and the reason I think they do that is because of what is called The Victorian Charter of Human Rights and Responsibilities Act 2006. Section 14 of that Act gives the full right to religious freedom, so basically you have the right to believe what you want to believe and right to practice in a way to bring those beliefs to life and that’s both as an individual and as a community. Section 7 of the charter basically says that the Victorian Government can’t impinge upon those rights without a valid reason. In my initial conversations with the government, they referred me to the health department, and they said, “Health and safety! Community health and safety!” and I basically wrote back and said, “Which part of non-addictive, non-toxic and psychologically safe do you not understand?” That point was where they started ignoring me again. So the reality is that we do in Victoria have religious freedom and furthermore, the government has to respect that. And the fact is that a compound that is non-addictive, non-toxic and psychologically safe compares incredibly well to alcohol, and if we look at alcohol, it’s so addictive that it ruins all sorts of people’s lives. It’s so toxic that it’s a disinfectant and it’s so psychologically dangerous that you can’t walk down the street at night without fear of being mugged by someone who’s drunk. So, if you look at the current state of what’s accepted by the community, ie. alcohol it’s way more dangerous than the transcendent compounds, so effectively if the government wanted to take it to court, they’d have a lot of difficulty in arguing, based on Section 7, because basically they could say community health and safety, but I’d say well hang on, no… I’m not asking for legalisation across the board, so I’m not asking for recreational access, I’m asking for regulated access for religious and spiritual purposes. Basically what I’m asking for is quite limited, but as I said also the current state of play is that alcohol is way more dangerous and is way more legal.
Nick: Why a hunger strike? What’s lead you to a hunger strike? Why is that the next step?
Greg: It’s sort of like… what do you do when you’re being ignored? Now I could throw a tantrum, but that’s not really going to do anyone any good. The reality is that there are other things I would rather do than a hunger strike, but the hunger strike is something I can do cheaply and effectively and hunger strikes get attention, and what I’m about is raising awareness, even if the government ignores me and the media ignores me, I can at least spend 35 days talking to people in the Bourke Street Mall, getting the case out there. But it’s also about mobilising the people that use these compounds normally so, one of the things that I find very disappointing is that there are not a lot of people like me who are actually out there, contacting the government and making a fuss. I speak to people every day who say, “Yeah, I’d love these compounds to be legal!” but as soon as you ask them, “What are you doing?” the answer is nothing.
“Why aren’t you doing anything?”
“Because I’m too scared to.”
So, what I hope to do is get out there and hopefully inspire a few people to do something, a few people to act and a few people to actually mobilise in order to motivate the government in order to do what they need to do and that is make these compounds legally safe.
Nick: You’ve touched on why you’re doing it, you’ve touched on the legal argument… when you were talking about the legal argument, I was sort of curious about something, what do you think of those who frame their chosen substance use in terms of recreation or hedonism? They’re not necessarily doing it for transcendence or something, but they enjoy it and they still do it safely. What do you say to those sorts of people?
Greg: I’m not arguing for that. That’s a very different argument, that’s a very different context. I’ll freely admit that what I’m doing in a lot of respects is tactical. Yes, mainly my use is spiritual and religious, but I certainly don’t have anything against the recreational use of these compounds and certainly we do ourselves a really big disservice as a country and as a state and around the world by having the only legal drug for mind-altering also the most dangerous drug for mind-altering. It’s just absolutely stupid. So the reality is that these compounds are used recreationally and they’re used safely recreationally, except for ayahuasca, DMT, I really don’t see someone using that recreationally and to be honest I think if you tried to use it recreationally, ayahuasca would take you were she wanted to take you and you’d be left thinking, “Well… that was an interesting experience.” In terms of the mushrooms, the acid, mescaline probably not so much because of the nausea, but certainly mushrooms and acid, I see no reason why they shouldn’t be legal. Same with cannabis, I see no reason why it shouldn’t be legal. But that’s a conversation for a different day.
Nick: We’re touching on bigger issues if we go into that.
In Lak’ech Ala K’in