According to the entheogen theory of religion: religion is essentially rooted in the experience of intense psychedelic tripping, the world religions consist of collections of stories which serve as metaphorical descriptions of psychedelic experiences (in particular the experience of mystical death and rebirth/ressurection/transformation).
This theory fits with the scientific evidence that entheogenic drugs trigger mystical/religious type experiences when they are administered in an appropriately conducive setting (the recent Johns Hopkins psilocybin study concluded this).
It would be interesting to get the atheist take on this theory, the issue here isnt religious beliefs (such as the belief in God) but rather religious/mystical/transcendent experiences of the kind that people commonly experience under the influence of entheogenic/psychedelic substances.
Since the psychedelic activity is still electrical brain impulses, more similar to a very complex computer, I can see no reason to think that the thing would be limited to 'n' deminsions, as far as computations go.
During some attempts at AI computing(neural networks), I have used 10 and higher measures/variables/deminsions as training data. The computer does not care! It is just looking for patterns in the data set via a very large number of weights to decribe vectors with 10 or higher number of measures.The 'measures' could be considered 'addresses' on a complex manifold that decribes the data. Imagine a piece of paper/rubber that had warps or folds in the surface, very much like a landscape. On that landscape there could be mountions, valleys, pits, and other complex structures. Sadly these details are in 10 or higher deminsions and can not be 'seen' my our minds easily, if at all. Could the mind, with help, 'walk' something like a very complex abstract structure, or take slices of this structure and 'walk' through to explore it?
I think in the book/movie 'DUNE', the mutated pilots could be considered to be doing just that, to find a path through space with the shortest distance, sadly it is SF/fantasy. I would not be willing to screw my mind up very badly to try...
I remain unclear on the "so what if it's true" aspect.
So what if atheism is true?
No, so what if drugs are there at the genesis of religion(s)? The genesis of various religions is irrelevant. The relevant fact is that religion is nonsense. If it's drug-induced nonsense or ignorance-induced nonsense, so what?
My impression is that a lot of the people who want to bring up drugs as an instigator of religion are also drug enthusiasts of various kinds and degrees. I find that enthusiasm puzzlling given the history of drugs as—even according to them—drugs are the source of the religious nonsense to start with.
Hi Rocky John
"LSD improves (driving)."
Yeah - It improves everything.
The thing with LSD and those types of druggies is that you really shouldnt do anything until it peaks. At least 90 minutes - it needs time to stablize. While its peaking its best not to try much - if your going to have an accident - thats when it'll happen.
Drugs need to be respected - teenagers get into trouble with it because they are not told the truth. Parents over react because they are fed nonsense about it and the teens are left on their own with it.. Thats the biggest cause of the problem.
I find it amazing that in Western cultures, parents allow their children to watch them smoke cigarettes, kids watch their parents drink alcohol and offer alcohol to their friends and we think thats ok?
Why did they give it to soldiers during the Vietnam War?
I explained to my son that if/when he tries anything like that - to have someone experienced with him. Nobody should really take a trip on their own unless they are very experienced.
"Are you insane stole?"
That depends on who you ask.
"i can tell you straight up i would rather get into the car with a drunk driver"
Are you insane Rocky John??.
Stole- no it does not. Hallucinogenic drugs and driving are particularly dangerous due to the hypnotizing effects of driving. Car lights only illuminating objects in front of the car, white lines and cat's eyes flashing past. The monotony. etc.
This is not even including the fact that they guy is hallucinating and likely to swerve for things that exist only in he's mind. It also decreases reaction times and a host of other problems.
I have personally been in the front seat of a car while on LSD ( way more than 90 min after i took it) with a sober driver. And i promise you the effects of it would have made it completely impossible for me to drive the car with any degree of safety. My depth perception was nearly non existent, i would often be mesmerized by the cats eyes and other cars headlights and zone out for a min or more, and i kept on thinking we were about to crash into non existent fences or other objects. Not to mention when the speed and petrol gauges turned into eyes.
"Yeah - It improves everything."
"Why did they give it to soldiers during the Vietnam War?"
Why the hell did you think they stopped doing so?
And virtually every other tripper disagrees with you stole.
I sometimes get into this state when I realize that many jobs involve monotony, small checks, and limited residuals to pursue hobbies.
At the bank today, during a moment when a teller asked, 'does anyone need help?', I suggested that I am working on my 'being beyond help', to which she responded, 'and you are so doing very well at it', to which I responded, 'such a skll needs lots of practice'. At this point a few of the other bank customers laughed, but returned to their lonely wait in line...
"And virtually every other tripper disagrees with you stole."
Sooo you know all the trippers do you?
Ta for the clip - I'll watch it later on.
No i don't know every tripper stole, but i can visit forums where drug users discuss driving on acid and notice that virtually all of them say it is a really bad idea unless on a miniscule dose. That combined with my own experience of lsd and car trips (where i was not driving) gives me good reason to say what i did.
@ Rocky John
Rocky John said: “I am simply saying their is no reliability on just how they change your perceptions. “
This is incorrect, psychedelic drugs alter perception in a very specific way, and this specific kind of alteration is guarateed whenever a person ingests a sufficient dose of any psychedelic drug. The alteration in perception caused by psychedelic drugs is the transition from ordinary perception to psychedelic perception. In Hoffman's terminology, psychedelic drugs cause the transition from tight cognitive association binding in the ordinary state of consciousness to loose cognitive association binding in the psychedelic state of consciousness. Psychedelic drugs are 100% reliable at triggering this particular kind of altered state experience, when you take psychedelics, you will have a psychedelic trip guaranteed.
Compare this to meditation, where there is no precise specification of the kind of alteration in consciousness (if any) that a person will experience. Most people who meditate find the experience quite calming and relaxing but generally unremarkable (it is common in meditation classes for people to drop asleep during deep meditation), nothing like the intense alteration of consciousness that are caused by ingesting psychedelic drugs. You cannot fall asleep during an intense psychedelic trip, if you close your eyes and curl up the trip experience only becomes way more intense (internalised).
Rocky John said:“There is absolutely no reliability nor control over just what altered state you will experience even when taking the exact same amount of the exact same drug.”
On the contrary, taking the same dose of the same drug will guarantee an altered state experience of the same essential character, and the same degree of intensity. Psychedelic drugs are highly ergonomic tools for causing temporary psychedelic experiencing, far more ergonomic than any of the drug free supposed “alternatives” like meditating or chanting etc.
The three essential variables in psychedelic experiencing were identified by Leary in the sixties, they are 1.Dosage 2.Mindset and 3.Setting/environment.
Drug free practises like meditating or chanting are perfect tools for AVOIDING the psychedelic altered state experience.
From your post i can only assume you don't have much real hallucinogenic drug experience yet alone any understanding of the various forms of meditation. Your argument is as inane as me saying that because lots of people who take acid don't have an intense mystical experience therefor acid can't cause intense mystical experiences. You infact seem to be slavishly quoting Terrence Mckenna almost word for word in your argument here, a person who i have seen admit to having almost zero knowledge of meditation that did not include drugs. Now tell me, would you consider it fair if i was basing an argument that drugs don't produce real mystical experiences on what some guy said who had never had any real experience with drugs at all?
I on the other hand have lots of personal experience with both. And i promise you i have had experiences from some meditation practices alone that dwarf a breakthrough dose of DMT. So please stop telling me it is impossible as you are only revealing your utter ignorance on the hundreds of various types of practices that fall under the blanket term meditation.