From: Tony@halmarax.demon.co.uk (Tony Halmarack)
Subject: Re: Comments on TWC-L
Date: Tue, 02 Jul 1996 19:03:14 +0100
In message <firstname.lastname@example.org> Brian Sandle wrote:
> And I ask that anyone supplying psychoactive substances, or data about
> them, considers having a support network at the ready for those who use
> them to their detriment.
In the TWC infrastructure that I advocate, all aspects of the experience would
be supported and safeguarded, within the limititations of human ability.
> Tony indicates a willingness to consider support for failures, though he
> perhaps doesn't give enough credence to harmful effect when he says
> `failure to have the desired effect'.
I believe a lot of work has been done on the therapeutic use of hallucinogens,
though I don't claim to be familiar with much of it at this stage. That's why
I wish to investigate and discuss it via this mailing list.
Though the "desired effect" will be specific to the individual, it's probably
safe to say that a positive, reassuring shift in perception, would be the
object of the exercise. Any possibility of a negative, disturbing effect would
need to be averted. The situation as a whole would be guided and supported
by people with the appropriate skills. Having said this, I believe these
objectives would be best achieved within a warm, socially oriented framework,
as opposed to a clinical, stainless steel environment. While all available
medical benefits would be sought, there would surely be a time for the white
coated scientists to take a back seat. Perhaps a midwifely presence would be
the most appropriate on this particular journey.
> I have some knowledge of Aldous Huxley's journey, though I feel the
> environment to be very important in what happened to him.
Setting is very important and is one aspect of the situation that could be
most easily developed.
> Some twenty years ago I read a book `Myself and I' about psychedelics and
> psychotherapy. The patient was very pleased that her therapist understood
> classical music as an important environmental aspect.
Music seems to play a part in many peoples spiritual development.
I hope it features as an important aid within the TWC.
> J.Krishnamurti, philosopher of life's journey, says he never took
> psychedelic drugs, though perhaps illness played part in his insights.
Good for him. It must be wonderful to attain spiritual enlightenment
without recourse to drugs. I seek this form of enlightenment myself
but just in case I don't make it by this route, I would appreciate a
> I feel that environment may be more important than medication, though you
> may remember I have said on talk.euthanasia that starvation is a normal
> death for animals and cancer patients. It may have effects which damage
> the body, I said, and should not be played around with.
Starvation, flagellation and various deprivations have been used to reach
awareness. Most of these methods rely on chemical changes in the brain. I'd
go for the most clean and painless method of achieving this that was
available to me, at my time of need.
> And to help agaisnt delusion from wrong medication and environment let us
> take a quick look at `levels' that we may be dealing with.
> I quote from `Silent Invasion' by Ellen Crystall:
> "In my judgement, many people don't know what they are channelling. They
> assume they are tuning in to aliens when in reality they are contact
> their own spirit guides or even what metaphysics calls the higher self -
> a level of awareness even beyond spirit guides. In all my experience of
> contacting the aliens and bringing talented psychics to Pine Bush to
> attempt to contact the aliens, none of us were able to channel the
> aliens. In fact several psychics who tried were surprised to learn that
> something like a wall of energy surrounds the aliens, protecting them
> from any attempts to reach them on the psychic level, whether through
> telepathy, clairvoyance or astral projection."
I wouldn't knock anyone's subjective findings. It's possible that there are
other more useful interpretations and experiences that would be better
models for our purposes.
> So I worry that by prescribing psychoactive medication yu will only be
> giving some sort of expensive entertainment at a particular `level',
Your Puritanical streak is showing again Brian. Fun is not a sin in
everyone's book. It may even be a vehicle for spiritual development.
>and that the
> entertainment will be hoped for again and again, which is nothing to do
> with spiritual development. The opposite to development may be occurring.
Maybe, but that isn't the effect we'd be seeking, is it?
> > Now why do I deserve "ire" for wanting to edjucate someone about someone
> > else's life?
> I was being advised not to discuss other than the point of death
> experience, but you appeared to be, as I explained.
My limited education in these matters is something I seek to overcome.
I found the Bardo Thodol (Tibetan Book of the Dead) enlightening and
convincing. My understanding of it's meaning is that life and death
are indivisible parts of the same cycle. In this sense the perceptions
of life are subject to the same conditions as the perceptions of death.
If spiritual enlightenment is a prerequisite for a "Good" death, then
it is equally necessary for a "Good" life. I hope that the methods used
to attain this enlightenment are going to be under discussion on
The odd chuckle wouldn't come amiss either, as far as I'm concerned.
-- Tony Halmarack =(*)= Tony@halmarax.demon.co.uk