A New “Free Love” Generation
A New “Free Love” Generation
With COVID-19 and cities being locked down, the world is at a stand-still. As surveillance increased and the media became fueled by this sense of panic less than 2 years ago, I couldn’t help feeling that there was something familiar about what was going on, nor could I shake this feeling that, whatever it was, I needed to pay attention. So I did.
For centuries, plagues and pandemics have been springing up and resulting in varying degrees of global deaths: The Black Plague (1420), Smallpox (1520), the return of the Black Plague (1620), The Great Plague of Marseille (1720), the first Cholera Pandemic (1820), and, from 1918-1920 – just over 100 years ago – the most damaging global H1N1 influenza plague: the Spanish Flu.
With the arrival of 2020 came events that were predestined to be set into motion, that are following a millennia-old cycle. With the new century, came a new global crisis in the form of viral contagion.
But along with it, as with past generations, was born a cultural movement.
With the arrival of 2020 came events that were predestined to be set into motion.
As time progressed and this movement gained traction in rhetoric and practice, a new theme developed, connecting the radical free love notion with radical social change, and depicting it as a harbinger of a new anti-authoritarian, anti-repressive sensibility. Funnily enough, the first wave of neo-shamanism and the resurgence of psychedelic practice in the West seems to have all coincided with one another at a sort of cosmic crossroads. But what does a psychedelic culture have to offer a world in such crisis today?
The Anatomy of Revolution
Author Brinton summarizes:
“…the revolutionary process as moving from “financial breakdown, [to] organization of the discontented to remedy this breakdown… revolutionary demands on the part of these organized discontented, demands which if granted would mean the virtual abdication of those governing, attempted use of force by the government, its failure, and the attainment of power by the revolutionists.”
Now, how do psychedelics fit into this equation? Through the same retrospective process that revealed the different stages of Revolution throughout history, we can see how the people responded to what was becoming a totalitarian Government, and although many protested with violence, many others protested with music (Woodstock, just one – and perhaps the most renowned – example) as well as a rebellious spirit that dared the people to embrace their uniqueness and celebrate that of others.
Terrence McKenna became a cultural icon who drew parallels between the psychedelic experience and shamanism.
Leaders such as Terrence McKenna started leaving their mark on culture during a desperately divisive, increasingly unstable political climate. When he first began gaining traction via public discourse and rhetoric, his focus was about psychedelics. He became a cultural icon who drew parallels between the psychedelic experience and shamanism, technology, virtual reality, art, tribalism, sexuality, and much more. He also was not alone.
Another of our psychedelic forefathers, Michael Harner, was also considered a leading authority on a phenomenon that erupted in the 80’s known as, “neo-shamanism”.
Uprisings and Civil War Could Be on the Horizon
As did McKenna and Harner, we too can see exactly where we are in history, what is coming next, and how a psychedelic renaissance of sorts, could be exactly what we need to harness if we are to mobilize each other – the people – sooner, and be better prepared this time.
If Ghandi, Jesus, and Martin Luther King Jr. could subvert manipulation, corruption and violence and create a counterculture that brought about the end of political tyranny non-violently, why can’t we? I guess the real question is, how?
Which brings us to the importance of shamanism.
A Brief Intro to Shamanism
Ya’Acov Darling Khan once said:
“…They understand how past trauma affects us in the present and how potency comes from transforming that past. They know that the future isn’t something that’s going to happen to us but something we’re going to create together… They know the connection between what we imagine and how things turn out. They recognize the power of the free will we have been given on this planet. And they are ready to help us harness that power and use it for the greater good.”
Shamanic people, it would appear, seem to arise during times of great crises within their communities and nations, and even on a global scale. But why is that important?
It seems from history’s tales that the psychedelic-fueled counterculture of the late 60’s was something of a remedy, a sort of protest by creation of a new culture! A new way to live, a new way to love,
…and a new way to think!
Shamanic people, it would appear, seem to arise during times of great crises within their communities and nations, and even on a global scale.
Over the last decade or so, it is not difficult to see how we have begun a new sexual revolution.
What if there were a new “free love” movement? Redefined, again as it was in the beginning!? Except this time, it’s not just about being anti-authoritarian in the face of sexual oppression… It’s about any oppression, to fight for the right for all people to be granted access back into Eden, as it were.
So, What Next?
The role of the shaman is to bring healing energies and secrets from the dreamscape – the dimension one enters when their consciousness is altered by psychedelics and certain meditative practices. But they do not have to be just wounded healers, but also wounded warriors!
There is more spiritual, psychological, and emotional trauma in the world today, more suffering on this level than there has been for a long, long time.
Find like-minded people, who are also groaning under the Orwellian oppression that continues to plague us. With suicides up 31% within the age bracket of 12-17 since this pandemic nightmare began, one thing is clear: There is more spiritual, psychological, and emotional trauma in the world today, more suffering on this level than there has been for a long, long time.
Seek out those who see this and are just as bothered by it! Seek out those who want to take non-violent, radical action!
Take some time to think on this, and imagine a world you want for your children, a world you wish you could have enjoyed well into retirement and decide to build that world for them!
How? Well, that’s a discussion for another day. I have my ideas…. I want to give you the chance to come up with yours, too. Its called collaboration, and it’s the first step in mobilizing like-minded people to action!
by Benji, a 31 year-old Melbourne-born Aussie and practicing neo-shaman