Do psychedelics give access to a universal, mystical experience of reality, or is that just a culture-bound illusion?
“Silicon Valley billionaires are putting their blockchain millions into funding psychedelics research, and corporates are preparing for a juicy new market. The counterculture has gone mainstream. Turn on, tune in, sell out. ”
“Perennialists tend to rank religions and mystical experiences hierarchically. All religions are one, but some are more one than others. Unitive non-dual experiences are more true, while dualist experiences (ie, personal encounters with God or a spirit) are less true. Accordingly, Buddhism, Hindu mysticism and Taoism are more true, while Christianity, Judaism, Islam and Shamanism are less true. The psychedelic research at Johns Hopkins follows this theological ranking. It uses the Hood Mysticism Scale to rate people’s psychedelic experiences – unitive experiences are scored as higher and more ‘complete’ than dualist experiences.”
“Western spiritual tourists can have a culturally naive idea that their experience of ayahuasca is the same as indigenous people’s experience, that everyone goes to the same Magic Kingdom where we all meet the same entity: Mama Ayahuasca.”
timespace coordinates: 25 – 33 ancient Rome / Jerusalem / Ionian SeaBen-Hur is a 2016 American epic historical period drama film directed by Timur Bekmambetov and written by Keith Clarke and John Ridley. It is the fifth film adaptation of the 1880 novel Ben-Hur: A Tale of the Christ by Lew Wallace following the 1907 silent short film, the 1925 silent film, the Academy Award-winning 1959 film and the 2003 animated film of the same name. It has been termed a “re-adaptation”, “reimagining”, and “new interpretation” of the novel. (wiki)
timespace coordinates: 13th century RussiaFurious, also known as Legend of Kolovrat (Russian: Легенда о Коловрате, translit. Legenda o Kolovrate), is a 2017 Russian historical fantasy film about the Ryazan knight Evpaty Kolovrat, It is directed by Dzhanik Fayziev & Ivan Shurkhovetskiy and stars newcomer Ilya Malakov, Polina Chernyshova, Aleksei Serebryakov, Aleksandr Ilyin Jr. and Yulia Khlynina in supporting roles.
Film is based on the period when Russia was under control of the Golden Horde. Ryazan knight Evpaty Kolovrat is the leader of the squad, which decides to fight back Batu Khan , who divided Russia.
The plot is based on The Tale of the Destruction of Riazan, a medieval military tale about the capture of the city of Ryazan by the Mongols in 1237 and is one of the best sources of the Mongol invasion of Russia. (wiki)
spacetime coordinates: 19th century EstoniaNovember is a 2017 Estonian fantasy drama film directed by Rainer Sarnet, based on Andrus Kivirähk‘s novel Rehepapp ehk November (Old Barny aka November).
“Sarnet’s earthbound fairy tale occupies a dreamscape somewhere between the teeming canvases of Brueghel and the existential agonies of Bela Tarr‘s films.” Sheri Linden
spacetime coordinates: 1996, Algeria, Abbey of Our Lady of Atlas
“I have said, Ye are gods; and all of you are children of the most High. But ye shall die like men, and fall like one of the princes.”
Of Gods and Men is a 2010 French drama film directed by Xavier Beauvois, starring Lambert Wilson and Michael Lonsdale. Its original French language title is Des hommes et des dieux, which means “Of Men and of Gods” and refers to a verse from the Bible shown at the beginning of the film. It centers on the monastery of Tibhirine, where nine Trappist monks lived in harmony with the largely Muslim population of Algeria, until seven of them were kidnapped and assassinated in 1996 during the Algerian Civil War.Largely a tale of a peaceful situation between local Christians and Muslims before becoming a lethal one due to external forces, the screenplay focuses on the preceding chain of events in decay of government, expansion of terrorism, and the monks’ confrontation with both the terrorists and the government authorities that led up to their deaths. Principal photography took place at an abandoned monastery in Azrou, Morocco. (wiki)
spacetime coordinates: 2002 – 2003, Grande Chartreuse, Chartreuse MountainsInto Great Silence (German: Die große Stille) is a documentary film directed by Philip Gröning that was released in 2005. It is an intimate portrayal of the everyday lives of Carthusian monks of the Grande Chartreuse, a monastery high in the French Alps.
The idea for the film was proposed to the monks in 1984, but the Carthusians said they wanted time to think about it. They responded to Gröning 16 years later to say they were willing to permit him to shoot the movie if he was still interested. Gröning then came alone to live at the monastery, where no visitors were ordinarily allowed, for a total of six months. He filmed and recorded on his own, using no artificial light. Gröning then spent two and a half years editing the film. The final cut contains neither spoken commentary nor added sound effects. It consists of images and sounds that depict the rhythm of monastic life, with occasional intertitles displaying selections from Holy Scripture. (wiki)