Podcast 339 – “A Necessary Chaos”


Guest speaker: Terence McKenna

Wade Davis & Terence McKennaPROGRAM NOTES:

[NOTE: All quotations are by Terence McKenna.]

“This is where I think the psychedelics come in, because they are anticipations of the future. They seem to channel information that is not strictly governed by the laws of normal causality. So that there really is a prophetic dimension, a glimpse of the potential of the far centuries of the future through these compounds.”

“Actually, the highest form of human organization is not realized in the democratic individual. It is realized in a dimension none of us have ever penetrated, which is the mind of the species, which is actually the hand at the tiller of history. . . . It is an organized entelechy of some sort, and human history is its signature on the primates.”

“I think it’s the sheer power of the hallucinogens that puts people off. You either love them or you hate them, and that’s because they dissolve world views. And if you like the experience of having your entire ontological structure disappear out from under you, if you think that’s a thrill, you’ll probably love psychedelics.”

“The leading edge of reality is mind, and mind is the primary substratum of being.”

“We can no longer have forbidden areas of the human mind, or cultural machinery. We have taken upon ourselves the acquisition of so much power that we now must understand what we are. We cannot travel much further with the definitions of man that we inherit from the Judeo-Christian tradition. We need to truly explore the problem of consciousness.”

“Capitalism is a gun pointed at the head of global civilization.”

“The way I think of the psychedelics is, they are catalysts to the imagination.”

PCs – Right click, select option
Macs – Ctrl-Click, select option

Posted in Chaos, Consciousness, Culture, Evolution, Future, Language, Psilocybin, Psychedelics, Terence McKenna (mp3).


  1. Does anyone know what the second part is from? (min 53) a lot of good stuff there

    Thanks for uploading

  2. What Eric Smith says in comment # seven about his personal experience leading up to, on and after December 21, 2012 is also true for me. Especially around the solstice did a lot of things ‘concresce’ and I was given to see so much beauty and meaning. I think the foundation for who I am supposed to be was finally laid around that date. Really special times indeed! Of course it all depended upon the two (give or take) years prior to the date, in which I too became an avid listener to McKenna-talks on the internet, and more than any other place, here in the Psychedelic Salon. I am deeply grateful to you Lorenzo, and I believe what you have done is of cosmic consequence. If more of us have shared in this experience, it seems evident to me that a seed for a more conscious (and therefore better) world has been laid. Now I know a whole bunch of stuff that I should do with my life. Next step is simply getting it done:)

  3. Comments on 2012, by Terence Mckenna:

    Terence remarks in this podcast, starting at 54:53:
    “People say, ‘Well why do you worry about saving the world, you just said it’s going to end in 2012 [sic]’. I don’t see that ‘rap’ as any sort of permission for political irresponsibility, or a lack of attention to world problems. If it’s true, great, we’re golden. If it’s not true, and what a long-shot it is, then we should still keep our eye on the ball with all of this stuff.”

    Question from audience member, to Terence, at 58:00: “So how are you preparing for 2012, yourself, personally?”

    Per Terence, starting at 58:40: “As to what I do…I should make it clear – I don’t believe this stuff. I find ‘believing’ in these high-flown, complicated systems to come off sort of like pathology.

    “So, I ‘entertain ideas’. But, I don’t give belief over.

    “I’m very amazed by the Time Wave. It continuously surprises and delights me. And, I don’t know, very few people are, obviously, as into it as I am. But, it’s proof enough, as far as I’m concerned. It’s all I ever would have asked for. It’s a gem from the Other. It’s Aladdin’s lamp. It’s what I wanted, and I got it.

    “At one point in La Chorrera, naturally, this question arose, in our group – Why us? Why us?…[and the answer that came to us was] ‘Because you don’t believe in anything.’ And that, apparently, that is what’s required.”

    “Do you’all know that Van Morrison song, about ‘No guru, no method, no teacher, just you and me and nature, in the garden, in the garden’? I think THAT actually, is where it’s at.”

    (from Psychedelic Salon, Podcast 339 “A Necessary Chaos”)

  4. Gregory Shields wrote: “…reminds me of a Jesus quote: “He that hath ears to hear, let him hear.” What an excellent and astute remark.

    My life absolutely transformed on December 21, 2012 – in ways so profound that I don’t have the time to describe them here.

    For me, personally, Terence’s time wave theory and teachings on the topic of 2012 “hit the mark” precisely.

    I owe a great debt of gratitude to Terence McKenna for this.

    I believe that the revolutionary life changes and spiritual changes that took place for me beginning on, and just prior to, the winter solstice of 2012, were largely attributable to the mental, spiritual, and psychic preparations that I had been engaging in for the last two years leading up to that special date.

    These preparations (such as researching Mayan culture and teachings, immersing myself in the study of astronomy, alchemy, and many other related topics; along with much meditation and patient, optimistic expectation) were spurred by the many Terence McKenna talks on the Psychedelic Salon that I listened to regularly, beginning in 2010.

    Thank you, thank you, thank you…Terence McKenna!!

    I also owe a debt of thanks to Lorenzo for making these fascinating talks of Terence available via podcast. (Lorenzo, I find your remarks that precede and follow each podcast interesting and insightful. Keep up the great work!)

  5. The statement that “McKenna’s song has been sung” reminds me of a Jesus quote: “He that hath ears to hear, let him hear.” It also reminds me of an old saying: “Don’t throw out the baby with the bath water.” No man is infallible; even Jesus is known to have changed his mind. (Don’t get the idea that I’m religious, because I’m not)

    There are thousands of hours of recorded speech that we have from Terence McKenna, along with several books and articles, and the topics range greatly. The man’s work doesn’t need me to defend it; it can speak for itself. I would only say to anyone who dismisses the man based upon errors with regard to 2012 that it’s your great loss that you have not ears to hear. Also, he did admit at times that he may have been wrong about what would happen in 2012, but even if he had not made such an admission, the immense value of his contributions would not be diminished.

  6. Would there be that much left in a “best of Mckenna”
    if one ignores al references to december 2012?

    I’ve been a McKenna enthusiast for well over a decade
    but now that the timewave hit zero, I don’t see the point.

    IMHO McKenna’s song has been sung.

  7. I too don’t mind the editing at this point, though having a link to the complete unedited versions of each talk would be nice for those historical scholars you refer to, or more importantly, new listeners to the Salon who just choose a McKenna talk at random to listen to, and for whom the McKenna stuff we regulars have heard many times will be new.

    Further to that last point, does there exist or can you (or someone) make some sort of list of “Best of” McKenna talks in the Salon archive? I’m thinking specifically of a situation where I might want a friend unfamiliar with McKenna to hear some of his best stuff. It’d be great if there was a list of maybe half a dozen of his “best” that we could refer a McKenna newbie to.

    I realize that it’ll be a matter of opinion as to which are the “best” McKenna talks, but if you could provide a list of a few you think might qualify, it’d give someone new to McKenna a place to start. Maybe such a list already exists? If so, can you tell us where?

    [COMMENT by Lorenzo: I’ve seen requests for lists from time to time but haven’t seen a compiled one yet. Personally, I’d start with “The Valley of Novelty” series starting with podcast 027. And they have their own Category link also: http://www.matrixmasters.net/salon/?cat=61 ]

  8. My favorite quote is Terence’s comments on capitalism (around the 55:40 min mark):

    “Because capitalism is not a human being; capitalism is a Moloch, a god, a god of bloody sacrifice that sees human beings as ants; and the more ants there are, the more offerings there can be to Moloch. But this is not a good situation for us ants.”

    Thanks for the podcasts Lorenzo!

  9. Keep editing. Perhaps for the new folks they might think they are missing something. But for us experienced listeners of the psychedelic bard, this edited version sounds fresh because the topics he touches are not his normal rap.

    Purists or historian can listen to the full recording if they want too. I find it refreshing that you have the courage to this Larenzo to let your ear influence our ears.

  10. Well well that was an interesting ride! Your comments at the end lorenzo really summed it up, (as a few net personalities have seemed to take Terence much more seriously than he took himself in an effort to discredit the man’s magic!) I also thank you for the audio editing, indeed most have heard the standard riffs repeatedly. Thanks brother

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