Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Mind Interfaces

In order to understand why different psychoactive substances have functioned as great creativity accelerators during human history and why and how such psychoactives lead to greater creativity some metaphors from the world of computing my come in handy.

Drugs are a technology, but they are a mental technology. This technology enables us to think using a different interface. The kind of interface which tryptamines (LSD, Psilocybin Mushrooms, DMT etc.) create enables a much tighter interaction between the different parts which constitute consciousness.

Synesthesia, the mixing of different senses, is often induced by tryptamines. One can see sounds or hear landscapes (This btw. gives new meaning to the part in the Torah in which it is said that during their spiritual ascension on Mount Sinai the Israelites saw the sounds). Other forms of synesthesia are also possible. The interaction between different parts of the mind is much closer, more associative and free. Words become images, images become words, and different ideas are hyper connected to each other in surprising arrays. Whereas in the normal state of consciousness the different parts of the mind are kept sharply separated from each other using, psychoactives these machines become integrated and create a sort of hyper-thought. This in its turn allows new combinations which are the reason for the great creative powers attributed to psychoactives.

In actuality human senses and the patterns in which our brain perceives the world are our interface to the world. We as humans are used to work with one brain, the human brain which is a machine which allows one specific interface to reality. Humans all work with the same brain.

What psychoactives enable you to do is change your mind interface, they enable you to change your brain. Psychoactives illicit the awareness that we are experiencing the world through an interface. Using psychoactives one comes to the realization that the interface you usually work with, the so called concensus consciousness is only one kind of interface among many possible one.

Comparing "consensus consciousness" with alternative consiousness can be like comparing the DOS opearting system to Mac Os Leopard (only the difference is much much further and extremer). For example, using our normal interface solving any kind of simple problem is very tedious and requires much work. Using alternative mind interfaces the same problems might become as easy as copying a file.

The same mind codes which usually demand great mental labor are now already written as procedures, while other mind procedures and functions are erased. The concensus interface includes within it everything: greed for power, money, sex and more. It is filled with bugs that hinder the evolution of mankind. However if you change opeating system you can rid yourself of most of the problems of concensus interface to reality. Like the ShiftSpace Software psychoactives just demonstrate and make you aware that we can choose our interface, that we don't have to be stuck with just one interface to our computing machine, to the internet or to reality.

However, one is not able to be under the influence of psychoactives the whole time. This would be slavery and therefore we have the concept of the work. Working to make a lasting change in our interface. Beside the work, computing and BCI (Brain Control Interfaces), nanobots and virtual realities come to mind again as a future possibility which will enable us to change our interfaces, erase many of those human "software bugs" which many mistake for inevitable but which, as the psychoactives teach us, are only part of our operating system, a part of an interface which we as experienced hackers and pscychonauts should know – is always interchangable.


Anonymous said...

Makes one realise how strong a drug 'normal consciousness' is.
Randomising and shuffling connexions turns out to be darn useful.
As for the OS metaphore, it might be abit too localised in both time and spatial domains.

Ido Hartogsohn said...

Yeah I agree. The OS metaphor is just a vehicle to understand it with terms in which digital man sees these things.

Interfaces, however, are an innate concept of existence. We live, feel, experience through interfaces. I think the proliferation of interfaces in today's digital culture substantially increases our awareness to the idea of our existence-interface in a different but also related fashion to the way psychoactives do.

K. said...

Ok; thanks for mentioning this interesting subject. it's something on the ToThink list for some time;; (sorry for signing annonymously b4, pw's you know..)