Remembering Timothy Leary On His 100th Birthday

You cannot use butterfly language to communicate with caterpillars.”
–Timothy Leary

Psychologist and author Timothy Leary was born on this day in 1920. Popularly, he’s known as the guy who promoted LSD use in the 1960s (“Turn on, tune in, drop out”)—but he was far more than that. He was a futurist, an esotericist, a humorist.

Two books of his that I’ve read personally are Musings On Human Metamorphoses, which is all about the continuance of human evolution (off-world, of course), and The Game of Life, which traces individual human development through the stages of the Tarot. And an absolute essential short text to read is his essay “The Post-Larval Must Be Very Cautious in Communicating with Larval Humans”…which is pretty much my mini-instruction guide for living on this planet.

I would also recommend Robert Anton Wilson’s Prometheus Rising, (overview by me here) which expands on Leary’s Eight-Circuit Theory of Consciousness.

Now, the “fringe” opinion is very divided on Leary, and you will find him as one of the central bad guys/CIA spooks in any number of meta-theories. The lore goes, that he was tasked with purposely introducing LSD into the populace by the CIA/”Illuminati” in order to destroy the peace movement and/or obliterate “American values.”

The thing is: if you research any number of avenues regarding “psychological studies” conducted by the government (and related think-tanks), Leary’s name will come up. And it will give you some pause.

That said, even his good friend Wilson, in Cosmic Trigger I, more or less admitted to (or at least hinted at) aspects of Leary’s life that gave him pause. Leary’s “character arc” (complete with redemption) in the book is clear in that regard.

But I think it was the government’s eventual and continual persecution of Leary—climaxing with him being sent to prison—that was evidence of his unwillingness to work within that System (or “the” system, or any system of that stripe).

I believe his desire to see humanity free and ready to evolve to the next level was sincere. (but that is me, reading a bunch of books; read books for yourself and decide for yourself)

If you would like to read more about Leary on this site, try:
Divine Invasions: Philip K. Dick, Robert Anton Wilson and “Alien Contact” In The 1970s
Starseed And Star Trek: VAAL and VALIS
Starseed And Star Trek: Where No Man Has Gone Before
Starseed And Star Trek: Space Seed, Glass Pyramids, And Defeating Nixon

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