"I've seen monks in the Himalayas, sit in the snow, in conditions that were so cold that as they were wrapped in wet blankets, the blankets froze around them. After many layers of blankets were applied, the monks would visualize heat within themselves, radiating out. The blankets would defrost, and a circle of melted snowwould appear around them. Their degree of mental accomplishment was measured by the size of the circle around them."
Then there are these shamans in Africa that will bury their head in the ground, go into a trance and have their heart stop beating for minutes and hours.
This topic is not meant to be a debate about which ones of the above stories might be true and which might not. They are listed here as examples to illustrate the fact that certain bodily functions can be influenced consciously with the power of the mind, some easily, others with more or less practice.
So what have these got to do with travelling to alternate dimensions, you might ask? Well, if there were no possibility of there being a connection I wouldn't have mentioned them now would I? (Just trying to create suspension ;D)
OK, here it is, it will be a wild ride but bear with me. Now, all of the changes in bodily functions I mentioned above can be achieved more easily with the use of chemical substances or drugs. I won't do a search right now but I'm sure it's medically possible to administer a certain drug in the appropriate amount to stop the heart beating for, say, 1 minute. Likewise, people use DMT to have a 5-minute trip, which is essentially a change in perception. The unusual thing with DMT is that it does not alter your consciousness - it doesn't make you drowsy or anything, you stay conscious and focused, you remain aware of who you are and where you are, except that 30 seconds into the trip the whole world around you gets swapped out in a matter of a few seconds, leaving you astonished at what just happened. DMT is a natural psychoactive compound, a neuro-transmitter that is natively present in the human brain. Why? No one knows. Just like no one knows why we have receptors in our brain for many transmitters from psychoactive chemical compounds found in certain plants to work on. We know SOME are for other compounds in the brain - we have opiates (morphine and heroine are derivatives of opium), adrenaline in the body (which is a stimulant that's as strong as any crack or amphetamine) and a few more. But as for the majority of the compounds, it is unknown why the brain has receptors for them. And it is of an equally large or possibly even larger mystery why these plants would even produce and sequester compounds that have no apparent role in their own metabolism.
Either way, the fact is that we have DMT naturally occurring in the brain. The only question remaining is, how do we activate it? There must be a way to self-induce hallucinations in a similar way to self-hypnosis or going into a trance by wild dancing and/or head-spinning, maybe with the assistance of the monotonous sound of drums.
What has a hallucination got to do with alternate dimensions? We can't be sure, opinions differ. Some psychonauts insist that the "other side" is an autonomous reality. Which is not at all impossible. Just like a radio telescope translates information emanating from portions of reality that we are not naturally equipped to sense into signals (visible light) that our brain can interpret, a psychoactive substance may be such a medium that opens a window to a portion of reality we are not ordinarily equipped to detect. Whether what we experience as hallucination is actually an autonomous reality (which ordinarily shows on our instruments as dark matter or dark energy) or just a mental phenomenon matters not. At the end of the day, what you define as reality is nothing more than electrical signals interpreted by our brain. That's all it is.
Anybody seen Peaceful Warrior (7.3 on imdb)? Remember how Socrates is trying to teach Dan towards the end of the movie? He says it's time to show him the big secret. So Socrates decides to take Dan on a hike. On the way up the mountain, Dan is excited and really loving the hike, anticipating what Socrates is going to show him. When at the top, Socrates says, "This is it." Day says, "What, the view?" Socrates points to a rock. Dan is then disappointed and says, “This is it? This is what you wanted to show me??” Socrates then walk away, while Dan realizes the powerful lesson of “It’s the journey, not the destination.” The relevance of this story is not so much the lesson but to show that happiness is not because of "what is" or what will be, but because of what's in your mind. If expectations not coming true is a source of disappointment and unhappiness then isn't the solution giving up expectations and living in the moment? That's what members of tribal societies have that westerners don't - the FELT presence of immediate experience. Not worrying about tomorrow. They don't have all the mental disorders we do. No schizophrenia, no suicide, no ADHD, none of that cr@p.
Another example I remember from book 4 of the CWG series. It goes like this:
"Can’t I simply choose to be happy?
How? How do I do that?
Don’t do it. Simply be it. Do not try to “do” happy. Simply choose to “be” happy, and everything you do will spring from that. It will be given birth by that. What you are being gives birth to what you are doing. Always remember that.
But how can I choose to be happy? Isn’t happiness something that happens? I mean, isn’t it something that I just am because of something that is happening, or going to happen?
No! It is something that you choose to be because of what is happening, or going to happen. You are choosing to be happy. Haven’t you ever seen two people reacting entirely differently to the same outer set of circumstances?
Of course. But that’s because the circumstances meant something different to each one of them.
You determine what something means! You give it its meaning. Until you decide what something means, it has no meaning at all. Remember that. Nothing means anything at all. Out of your state of beingness will meaning spring. It is you who are choosing, in any moment, to be happy. Or choosing to be sad. Or choosing to be angry, or mollified, or forgiving, or enlightened, or whatever. You are choosing. You. Not something outside of yourself. And you are choosing quite arbitrarily."
Anyway, the point is, regardless of "what is", regardless of external circumstances, regardless of what you call reality, what matters is what's in your head, because that's what you ultimately experience - it's all dependent on belief, attitude, what you choose to notice in any given situation, and so on. If a sensory input reaches your brain and it makes you happy, what does it matter where the input came from? If eating a cake gives you satisfaction, stimulating the taste-centre of the brain with the appropriate signal will have the same effect. If an NDE gives the experiencer a feeling of utter bliss and feeling loved,and when they come back they are a totally different people, not materialistic any more but realizing the importance of love, what does it matter whether they were on the other side or it was just chemicals in the brain? They've become better persons.
Similarly, if you can somehow activate the DMT in your brain (it's there for a reason, right?) then the experience will be as real as it can get, and the effects as solid as the effects of any "real life" experience. Unfortunately there will always be people who will fail to see the point in things like lucid dreaming, throwing around scornful comments like "I prefer living in the real world", and then they go and watch TV, soap operas that never actually happen, news programmes about events that will never affect their lives, or documentaries about places they'll never go and about people doing things they'll never do. Or watch a football match that they wouldn't notice if it were a recording.
I've always thought this was funny, the way they scream and shout supporting their team, when it's not even shown real-time on TV but with a bit of a delay. When you see a goal scored, it's already history. Even if you're in the stadium it takes time for light to reach your eyes and then for the electric impusle to reach your brain, and then to cognize and interpret the event. If the match had taken place secretly a day before and they broadcast it as live, would that make the match less enjoyable? No. You'd still be hoping for your team to score, even though it'd all taken place already. It doesn't matter, what matters is what you BELIEVE. If they broadcast a match from 2 years ago you can still enjoy it with the same extasy as you would enjoy a live match, if you believe the recording to be live. So why don't people watch old recordings of matches? They don't know what the end result is if they haven't seen it and haven't checked it. If you want to watch a live football match you'd been anticipating and after the end they announce that they (mistakenly or deliberately) broadcast a past match (that you hadn't seen) you'd be upset because you'd see how stupid you were shouting, telling them to score and celebrating when they did, and wondering as to the final outcome, while maybe others that'd seen that match noticed and knew who'd score and when. How would this be different from a match they shot one day before and broadcast it as live? How is it different from a football match watched in virtual reality? Nohow, that's how. It's not the match, it's what you BELIEVE. If the TV lag were a whole minute would that disturb you? You're wondering if a team are going to score and your friend calls you from the loctation that they already have, but it hasn't reached your telly yet. After you hang up, will you be able to enjoy the match knowing that others will know the result while you're still being excited with wonder, guessing and anticipation? How would this be different from watching a recording from, say, 10 years ago? How much lag is acceptable?
What's the lesson? If you believe it's real, then for you, for that moment, it is. As you can see, from this point it's only a small step to know when something is not real but treat it as if it were. As long as it can make you excited, happy, or whatever. By not allowing something to excite you just because you happen to be aware of it being more or less different from "reality", you are CHOOSING not to be excited about it. But then you could choose to consider ANY tv broadcast as something of the past, other than reality. Or any "real life" event for that matter, as the speed of sound and light are not infinite. You're ALWAYS observing the past. It's all history. None of it is real. The stars in the sky, many of them are not even there any more, and people 100 or 1000 years from now will see them as exploding supernovae, even though they've already exploded, it's just that their light hasn't reached us yet. Even the light from the Sun takes 499 seconds to reach us. When you watch a solar flare, it's already gone. So what is reality? Who cares? If it were really that important, half the world would't be playing computer games every day. All they really do is re-arrange 1s and 0s in a microchip that a computer tells them means they've won a car race or something.
So my take on it, if you learn to unleash the power of DMT in your brain, practically you will be experiencing an alternate universe. Whether that univerrse is actual or imagined, I will leave for those that choose to get caught up on the details to decide. Meanwhile you enjoy your travels and experiences while they miss out and watch what others put before them on TV. How do you learn this? I'm not aware of anyone knowing, but if there is a way I'd like to know. DMT activating in the brain is probably what causes experiences of rapture in accounts of some saints and spiritual seekers. It might have something to do with the sensation of "the rising of the kundalini". Maybe it's what is experienced as enlightenment. I don't know. I've heard of people who allegedly learned levitation using magickal practises. D. D. Home was certainly never debunked, even though he always insisted that people vigorously search and look for any sign of trickery. He had bunches of people hanging onto his feet while he lifted several metres into the air without ropes or anything. Jesus is said to have walked on water. A key here is realizing the illusional nature of "reality". That it's a holographic universe, as Leonard Susskind explains. So things can be learned. Once you do learn, it's like holding your breath. Easy. As for methods to activate the DMT in our brain, this topic is meant as a place for brainstorming. Any and all ideas are welcome.
Sources for information I used for this topic:
a BBC series of interviews featuring Susan Greenfield, a pharmachologist from Oxford University, ethno-pharmocologist Christian Ratsch, anthropologist Richard Rudgley, ethnobotanist Terence Mckenna, and many more like Andrew Weil, Ronald K. Siegel etc.:
And most importantly a talk by Terence Mckenna on DMT:
Edited by Rolci, 13 January 2014 - 07:41 PM.