I’ve never had the experience where you’re uhm, Terence McKenna style on now and the presence of the other talking
Joe Rogan: Oh really?
Sam Harris: And receiving information that I couldn’t have had in any other way or I think I could not have any other way. So for people that have that experience, it seems rational to say that, that it’s putting you in touch with an other in some sense.
It’s not just you, it’s not just an expanded you or just the universe without you be, without your ego involved. It’s actually putting somebody else’s attention on you and now you’re in dialogue.
Now, that’s just an experience I haven’t had and so I can’t really… but the thing the test of the validity of that experience is pretty straightforward. If you’re getting information that you couldn’t have any other way, that should be provable.
And one of the uhm, the f ishy things about Terence ‘s account of these states is that at many moments he claimed to be get—he really did claim to have a compelling experience of being in dialogue with kind of omniscient other.
You know so he would, I dunno if you read his book True Hallucinations
Joe Rogan: Sure
Sam Harris: So, he’s in the Amazon. He’s walking around and he’s had more mushrooms than any person in human history and he’s in dialogue with a.. it’s a very.. very readable book, very fun read.
Uhm, some very out there ideas in there and so it’s, I’m gonna summari– I’m gonna falsify by summarizing what he was claiming to be in dialogue with. But he’s in dialogue with some omniscient other.
Uhm, and it’s just so he’s pointing to a species of plant that he doesn’t know the name of. He’s.. Terence has very lot of botanical knowledge but he’s pointing to a plant that he doesn’t know the name of…
And he claimed he’s just getting the Latin name in his head beamed to him by Other. Now, that would be a… he’s… it’s been a while since I looked at the book but it…
If you have a scientific frame of mind, you actually want to establish, whether it’s more than just your experience. That’s the kind of thing that’s very testable.
I mean you could say listen, I didn’t know any of these plants and I’ve never taken a course in Botany or I’m gonna give the same dose to someone who I really know doesn’t know a damn thing about Botany.
And we’re gonna see how many of these species of these plants that he can name and uhm, and that’s just.. I mean that would be as easy as testing a psychic phenomenon in an ordinary sense.
Joe Rogan: Sure if you can attach it scientifically.
Sam Harris: If you could just get information
Joe Rogan: One unique experience though, I mean.
Sam Harris: But, but..
Joe Rogan: Can you remember any of those names?
Sam Harris: So Terence was so smart, uhm, but he, you know, he was not the most rigorous at the margins of his rap on what is real, you know.
He was more poet than scientist when he would, he would get to somebody’s crucial moments and so, uhm, yeah.
I haven’t seen in his work any effort to be really rigorous and say, okay, I had this experience where I was getting information that I know was not my own content. It was not based on prior learning. It’s not just merely imagined.
It was real information and here’s how I went about to authenticate that it was real information. ‘Coz he talks about just being able to close his eyes and see alien civilizations and obviously that’s hard to authenticate but see historical periods and see uhm…
Joe Rogan: He said that?
Sam Harris: Yeah. Yeah. No, yes.. he was.. he would
Joe Rogan: What book is that in?
Sam Harris: It was in one of his talks.
Joe Rogan: Wow, he was probably in his highest fuck.