Terrence McKenna once said, "Either I'm really onto something with psychedelics, or I'm completely delusional."
OK, great point. How do you decide which it is Terrence?
It is enough to listen to his talks.
This is the first, most obvious level of "waking up" that the experience gives people. Leary's version of it was "Turn on, tune in, drop out." It is also why monks were admonished to live outside of towns, so that they wouldn't be caught up in the mundane dramas of day to day life. However as an insight it is framed in the negative; what not to get caught up in. The hippie culture was predicated on it. But hippies never really found a better direction, except to make everything playtime. That didn't work, and we got yuppies, etc.
But as I've mentioned before in this thread, McKenna wrote several books. In one, the title of which I think is "True Hallucinations", he goes on about being in the Amazon jungle and taking DMT. His insight on that occasion was that if he hummed a certain note, that would cancel out the energy waves around him and the temperature would fall to absolute zero. Then spontaneously a cosmic goo would appear and have the property of granting all wishes. There's a books on tape version of this where McKenna does his own reading, and he hums the note. He's 100% invested in this idea. So, as he himself said, either he was really onto something, or he was completely delusional. What would be the test? Did the cosmic goo appear, did all his wishes become granted?
That was the trouble with McKenna. He wanted
his psychedelic visions to be authentic, to be valid. They weren't, as I think is obvious in the example just given. My position is that the importance to the experience is that it can completely displace the sober experience, which means that the sober experience is not absolute, not 100% authentic. It is a failure of imagination to say that the psychedelia experience is more
authentic. Truly authentic experience would have to be unchangeable, common to both the sober and psychedelic experience. So that starts
The Dharma teachings on the mind's clarity, luminosity, and unimpeded nature seem to fit the bill, not validating the psychedelic experience, but of what it is about the mind that isn't
effected by psychedelics. Dharma is about the nature of mind, not the contents of mind. Evidently there are scriptures that say the usefulness of psychoactive substances is to demonstrate the malleablility of the mind. This is my interpretation of that idea. The incident where Ram Dass gave his guru acid being a demonstration of that understanding.