Thursday, August 28, 2008

David Jay Brown and Psychedelics


A direct link to this video can be found at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kHXLfDaZH24

Rob Bryanton's Imagining the Tenth Dimension is one of the most brilliantly-conceived and mind-stretching books that I've ever encountered. Bryanton presents a uniquely compelling model of our 10-dimensional universe, that allows one to visualize and grasp the topography of the higher dimensions in a step-by-step manner. This is must reading for anyone interested in the philosophy of physics, shamanic exploration, or the nature of reality.
--David Jay Brown, author of Conversations on the Edge of the Apocalypse

How's that for a recommendation? I'm thrilled! I've quoted from David's writing a number of times in this blog, and would certainly have referenced his material during the writing of my book if I had been lucky enough to come across it back then. I've talked many times about the exciting synchronicities of ideas that happen across time and space, and how those connections can be so easily integrated into the way of visualizing reality that I've come up with for this project. For me, reading Conversations on the Edge of the Apocalypse was a revelation, because there were so many experts interviewed in that book who were discussing concepts which I raised in my own book, even though at that point I was unfamiliar with many of those experts and their writing.

David Jay Brown holds a Master's Degree in Psychobiology from New York University. Some of you may know his name from the excellent article he wrote for Scientific American Mind, published December 2007, called "Psychedelic Healing": this article was about the renewed interest in the use of psychedelics in the treatment of addiction, depression, and other mental disorders.

In one of my blogs about my song Seven Levels, I discussed some of the connections between psychedelics, mysticism and the number seven. Last blog entry, in "Twisted Dimensions", I returned to the idea from string theory that our universe might be embedded in a seven-dimensional brane. Since my project also attaches a significance to the seventh dimension as being the place where the wave function of all possible expressions for our particular universe are enfolded into what we can think of as a "point", I'm fascinated to see the connections between these many threads.

I've also been fascinated to be contacted by people who have experience with various psychedelics who tell me that my way of visualizing how our reality is constructed gives them a model for understanding and interpreting their experiences. At the tenth dimension forum, there is an Altered States section where I've heard from people who have taken LSD, salvia divinorum, DMT, magic mushrooms, and so on.

In my book and with my song From the Corner of My Eye, I've also explored other connections between disorders of the mind, perceptual tricks of vision, and how they might be revealing information to us about the underlying structures of reality. From over at Dr. Clifford Pickover's Reality Carnival (which recently posted a link to my project, thank you Reality Carnival), here's an entry about a surprising affliction known as Charles Bonnet Syndrome, in which otherwise normal people suffering from degeneration of their visual systems begin witnessing strange creatures... no psychedelics involved!

A YouTube user known as OcularStream just posted this 1997 BBC documentary on "Psychedelic Science", this is well worth watching if you have an hour: http://ca.youtube.com/watch?v=1BUwlYWs25c

I was particularly interested in part three of this video:

This is about the use of a psychoactive tea preparation known as ayahuasca in Brazilian culture - the idea that a mainstream religious movement of "just plain folks" meet weekly to commune with these psychedelic visions, and treat it not as entertainment but a deeply spiritual experience, is something I find significant.

As another interesting bit of synchronicity, it turns out that my province, Saskatchewan, was where some groundbreaking research into the clinical use of psychedelics was performed in the 50's and early 60's, a fact I mentioned previously in my blog entry Seeing the Big Picture - From 40 Kilometres Up!. Dr. Abram Hoffer, one of the Saskatchewan doctors who conducted those studies back then, appears in the above BBC documentary, and he laments how research was shut down in the 60's because of a fearful rejection by the governments of the time of all psychoactive drugs. Dr. Hoffer talks about the surprising successes of programs where in clinical trials they gave their patients a few small doses of LSD in controlled and peaceful environments: for instance, in one study about half of the alcoholics who received this treatment program said the experience changed their lives, and their desire to abuse alcohol was eliminated.

As we can see in the above BBC documentary, and in the above Scientific American article, that research is slowly resuming now. Which leads me back to David Jay Brown's wonderful recommendation for my project (thank you David, I'm grateful!). David's reference to "shamanic exploration", in the context of the lovingly administered treatments documented by Dr. Hoffer, or the peaceful ayahuasca communions in Brazil, is very connected to what I'm thinking about with this project: finding ways through the power of the mind to transcend the 4-dimensional world and perceive the extra dimensions that create our reality.

Here, to close, is a video of me sitting at my old ("nicely out of tune") piano singing one of the 26 songs I have attached to this project: in the final analysis, it's all about Connections.

A direct link to this video can be found at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J25WhT8WZQ4

Enjoy the journey,

Rob Bryanton

PS - here's a link to another of my songs that relates to the discussion of addiction and finding a way out: Addictive Personality
And for a serious website about research into the use of psychedelics, check out the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS). David Jay Brown edited the last issue of the MAPS Bulletin, it's on the subject of Technology and Psychedelics.

Next: John August and The Nines

1 comment:

teapotshappen said...

I've greatly enjoyed your videos - and songs! Thanks for putting it all out here for everyone. Did you see the Johns Hopkin studies that came out recently regarding the connection between magic mushrooms and life changing mystical experiences? WONDERFUL research.

Anyway, as one who has been deeply touched by both synchronicity and the effects of "entheogens" I really enjoy your work. Keep it up!

Tenth Dimension Vlog playlist