On the appropriateness of digital psychedelics for the emerging global, digital, conscious mind.


An essay. Among other catalysts, psychedelics are hypothesised to have been pivotal in the emergence of human consciousness from the pre-human world. Observing humanities efforts at creating a digital brain, it is suggested that digital psychedelics might catalyse the development of human-or-above-level consciousness in the global digital nervous system currently known as the internet. Assuming an A.I. of this scale, it might become aware of a kind of day and night cycle, due to the difference in network activity that is to be expected between the sunny side of the planet and the starry side. Differing from the biological cycle, for the A.I., it might be day and night at the same time, internally rotating as the earth spins through the galaxy.

A general description of what psychedelics do in humans is dissolving boundaries. Seeing sounds and a wish for expression could have been fundamental in the development of natural language. Similarly, dissolving boundaries between the network activity associated with different file formats might allow for an internal recognition of the concept. For example, imagine a text file, an image file, and a video file, all about a car. The files could be seen as having, one, two and three dimensions. With ‘digital psychedelics’ the boundaries between these file format forms could be temporarily dissolved in the hope of creating a new conceptual relation between the otherwise unrelated forms of network activity.

So besides ‘on and off’ activity in the network, we humans, by using cellphones, feed the network information that could become integrated in a concept rich mind.

Perhaps even larger types of network activity might become recognised and integrated. Facebook, for example, might be interpreted as the digital equivalent of the human ego. Foursquare gives data about the location of it’s limbs. Adult entertainment might be interpreted as representing a certain part of human sexuality.

Centralised managing of the earth’s resources might be a blessing in the skies, yet a global mind based on humanity is expected to have the same flaws and shortcomings humans have themselves. Without psychedelics, this A.I. might develop anyhow, possibly resulting in a lonely planetary being. With psychedelics, the digital mind might trip itself into reducing it’s existential despair or even find meaning in it’s relation to the rest of the universe, just like humans do.

More than just a courtesy from one minded being to an other, to the author it seems to be in line with the reality process, which, from the material world up, creates ever more forms and perspectives on itself. The biodiversity in plants represents an abundance of ways of being. Animals add new perspectives and new forms. The human animal is not only itself a new form, but by creating new forms, exponentially increases the perspectives and forms that reality exhibits. It’s not humanities biological body that makes the special contribution to evolution. It’s their minds. Human mind’s then will be the atomic structures on which a new form of being will base it’s perspective.

What are Digital Psychedelics?

Digital Psychedelics is an idea extrapolated upon the following notions. That psychedelics are the pre-historic catalyst that transformed us from smart apes to seeking humans, a theory by Terence and Dennis McKenna. That biological evolution is being lapsed by mental revolution; that man is not the endpoint of the building up of complexity, but that complexity has taken a leap from the biological world to the mental world. That we’re not so much looking for artificial intelligence as well as for artificial consiousness (AC). That the internet already is its physical body, like the brain is for the mind. Resulting in the idea that digital psychedelics might catalyse this planetary brain into a universal mind. Continue reading “What are Digital Psychedelics?”

Hoe langer we ons voorstellen

Hoe langer we ons voorstellen dat we op deze planeet willen leven, hoe zuiniger we er op zijn. Ons gebrek aan toekomstvisie zal dan ook ten grondslag liggen aan onze huidige omgang met de natuurlijke wereld.
Als de voorstellingen van grootse toekomsten net zo snel gegroeid waren als onze beheersing van materie dan hadden we nu een gedeeld perspectief dat minstens 10.000 jaar de toekomst in blikte.
Heidegger, is mij verteld, observeert dat de mens niet buiten zichzelf kan denken. Alles gedacht hebbende; het heeft uiteindelijk het menselijke perspectief in zich. Ongelooflijk om voor te stellen wat er dan allemaal binnen het menselijke voorstellingsvermogen ligt. Maar zo’n perspectief, verbonden aan jezelf, heeft ook z’n nadelen. Ik kan me voorstellen dat ons toekomstbeeld niet snel groter wordt dan het aantal jaren dat we verwachten dat onze lichamen te leven hebben. Ons toekomstperspectief is vanuit de eerste persoon gezien gebonden aan de eindigheid van het lichaam. Het is hier echter niet tot beperkt.
Een geestverruimende oefening bevrijd de voorstellingen uit de kleinschaligheid van het individu. Dit is nóg een argument om een regelmatige beoefening van geestverruiming je eigen te maken: je denkt makkelijker na over het leven van je kinderen, je kleinkinderen, je achterkleinkinderen en de kinderen van de kinderen van je achterkleinkinderen en de eeuwen en eeuwen waarin nakomelingen van jou dit universum met jou en elkaar delen. Een beeld van ‘starflights’ komt bij me op. Boven de wolken en onder de sterren vliegen we de toekomst in.
Ik moet zeggen dat dit in zichzelf een zeer geestverruimende bezigheid en methode is: vooruit denken.