Thursday, June 24, 2021

Nick Herbert: The Lex Files Interview

Lex Pelger, Summer 2017

Lex Pelger is a longtime explorer of forbidden medicine, outlawed sacraments and unconventional behavior, both as chronicler and participant. I first met Lex in 2017 at Bruce Damer's Digibarn in Boulder Creek where he was researching a section of Damer's Timothy Leary archives. Recently he's created his own Lex Files, a series of audio (and now video) interviews with persons working at the edge that have attracted his interest. Lex began this project in January 2020 and has since produced nearly 50 high quality interviews with a variety of individuals which include Britta Love on Sex as a Psychedelic (#11), Erik Davis on UFOs as Spiritual Objects (#16), Mike Crowley on The Psychedelic Roots of Buddhism (#30), Jeffrey Kripal on Mysticism, the Supernormal and Books from the Future (#34), Harald Atmanspacker on The Mind/Matter Problem (#48) and, most recently, Nick Herbert on The Poetry of Quantum Reality (#49).

The Lex Files: Season Finale: The Poetry of Quantum Reality with Dr. Nick Herbert 

Dr. Nick Herbert is one of the original bad boys of quantum physics. He's written one of the most readable textbooks on quantum reality and is featured as a countercultural hero in David Kaiser's book: How the Hippies Saved Physics. Today he explains quantum reality, quantum tantra, and his pursuit of the riddles of consciousness. He also performs his quantum poetry and explains some of the history behind Kaiser's book. It's a grand talk with a marvelous old wizard -- and the ideal way to end our second season.
Nick Herbert, seeking inspiration

Wednesday, June 9, 2021

Color Lines

Fractal-prism Bubbles by Tammy Wetzel

If you can choose your gender 
Why can't I choose my race?
When asked about ethnicity
I''m everywhere in color space.
I'm just as red as any Russian
And sometimes, Miles, I'm kinda blue
My grandsire killed in Ohio coal mine
I'm just as anthracite as you.
My ancestor's the famous Green Man
Striding through some Irish bog
My uncle's the Jolly Green Giant
I'm cousin to Kermit the Frog.
No color is to me unbeautiful
I'm your rainbow troubadour
Call me Homo spectral  
Hear me roar!

Saturday, June 5, 2021

Forty Memorable Fucks

Nick in his new bath pavilion


Actually some of My Forty Fucks are not sexual at all but what they have in common is a strong and  instructive connection with The Mysterious Other -- in this particular list I define The Other to be a member of the opposite sex.

Sometimes on various mind-altering drugs. Sometimes completely straight.

Just for fun a while ago I made a list of (for me) Forty Memorable Fucks. Since then I have added more items, both through subsequent happenings plus reminiscences of ones I'd long forgotten.
It's more than forty now.

Are you the least bit interested in exploring what sexually astonishes you? I encourage you to put together your own list of memorable fucks. Since I was somewhat shy and ignorant in those days, your list will probably be much much longer than mine.

Here's one simple example of a (non-sexual) incident from my list. It may not mean that much to you but it seemed at the time profoundly important and insightful to me.

Your fuck memorable mileage may vary of course.

South of Esalen Institute in Big Sur a public campground is located near the beach at Lime Kiln Creek. There's also a restricted access private campground that extends into the hills and encompasses the actual lime kilns for paying customers only and (in our case) we were friends with the manager of the camp.

My future wife Betsy Rasumny and I car-camped at the private Lime Kiln park, spending a few days there, and decided to explore the premises on LSD. We wandered up to the famous lime kilns and viewed them in their ritualistic splendor.

Betsy was a dancer trained both in ballet and dance improv in New York City and at the late Ann Halprin's Dancer's Workshop in San Francisco. So I was surprised when we crossed Lime Kiln Creek barefoot (and probably naked as well) that she was stumbling over the smooth rocks that lay beneath the surface of the stream, while I (totally untrained in dance) had no problem in skillfully traversing this little Big Sur rivulet.

"Hey Betsy," I shouted. "I thought you were a dancer. What happened to your gracefulness?"

Betsy looked me straight in the eye and replied: "Nick dear, dance is not only about grace."

And in that moment I wordlessly realized that she with her seemingly clumsy movements was moving fully in the imperfect moment while I, who am accustomed to seeing life more as a problem to be solved rather than a miracle to be savored, was experiencing what was happening from a totally different perspective.

It's not that her way was better than mine. But her answer raised a question in my mind that persists to this day.

Betsy was expert in living in the present; Nick's monkey mind is usually somewhere else entirely .

Is being clumsily fully present better than being gracefully fully in charge?

In Esalen co-founder Mike Murphy's terms, what is the way to more deeply employ and enjoy  "this life we are given?"

And could your own Five or Five Hundred Memorable Fucks become useful clues for learning to live more fully this strange miracle of waking each morning inside a needy animal body?