Graham Hancock, Supernatural: Meetings with the Ancient Teachers of Mankind, Anchor, 2005.

This work summarizes the breakthroughs since the 1980s in deciphering Paleolithic cave paintings and showing the common origins of all culture in religion. Religion began with shamanism and the mastering of 'altered states of consciousness' (asc) either through specially gifted individuals' ability to achieve asc directly or the use of hallucinogens.

-brain as receive as well as generator of consciousness. -visions/ dreams (especially man-beast (therianthrope), otherworlds) -> development of symbolic thought, awareness of spiritual world -> modern man.
-Francis Crick won Nobel Prize in 1992 for his discovery of DNA in 1953 while on LSD -went from atheist to belief that life on earth was seeded with DNA by some alien civilization. -see his Life Itself: Its Origin and Nature (1982)
-Q: is hallucination internal (physical eye, memories -> Freud, collective unconscious -> Jung, mere creativity) or external (mind as 'tuned' to channel, jini, fairies, other dimension/ reality, earth colonized by alien DNA but from where?). -hallucinogens allow temporary retuning of brain.
-Q: are benefits of shamanism from human mind or are shamans literally helped, taught, prompted and inspired by supernatural agents? 285. -high-tech virtual teachers encoded in one's own DNA (ie, internal to mind/body, but revealing the DNA encoded messages from pre-earth civilization, 'spirits' or virtual teachers broadcasting interactive lectures)?
-in cave paintings, sense of independent world on other side of rock face. see only part of a figure and the rest hidden (also depictions underwater (unconscious as ocean), in sky). -superimposition of images ~ 3-d, floating.
-cave simulates access to dark matter (95% of matter, a la 'junk' DNA vs gene-encoded DNA). -'thisworld' sensory deprivation allows better access to otherworld, other consciousness, other senses (sixth))
-shaman's trance as state of being 'spoilt' (-> 'smashed' when drunk).
-San (!Kung) records 1870s Cape Town by German philologist Wilhelm Bleek and Lucy Lloyd. -language now extinct. -seek knowledge of control of weather, movt of animals, battle with spiritual enemies, locate far-off friends, knowledge of pharmacological properties of plants, ability to heal, chants/ culture
-shaman -2% of people able, but more with hallucinogens (same 2% with UFO-sighting stats and experiences (inserting needles in brain, painful experiments, interbreeding))
-shaman's bleeding nose (dry air, fasting) and piercings -hardships of shamanic experience.
-man fully 'evolved' physically 200,000 yrs ago, including neurological capacity for altered states of consciousness, but first shamanic experiences recorded 40,000 yrs ago in cave/ rock paintings. use asc for good of community as a whole. -catalytic role in extracting our ancestors from the 5m-yr torpor of hominid line, galvanized their intuition and creativity, helped them build stable and nurturing, non-violent society, set course for future evolution. 280.
-San 1/2 of men, 1/3 of women shamans, also Tungus and South Americans (ayahuasca), Greek Eleusian rituals (Persephone, Demeter, ergot), Europe psilocybin...
-stages of trance - 1/ entoptic (patterns), 2/ people/ animals/ therianthropes, 3/ calm reflection with soft music, clouds.
-David Lewis-Williams developed this insight in 1980s but refused to try drugs (but experiment is part of experiment in any case, even by his refusal to countenance experience). skeptic. -admited therianthropes universal but localized (eland, jaguar, crocodile, ...). -attributes hallucinations to memory and cultural background. reductionist.
-pure DMT (dimethyltryptamine) injection experiments by Rick Strassman (DMT:The Spirit Molecule (2001)). -subjects' experiences recap shaman visions but as if the otherworld was computer full of info to be downloaded.
-DNA a la 2 serpents intertwined. -encodes all cell-based life.
-Jeremy Narby's Cosmic Serpent (1998) postulates earth colonized by alien DNA (4.5b yrs ago earth formed, cools 3.9b yrs ago and immediately beginning of life -impossible as random event). -highest stage of evolution (consciousness/ unconscious) encoded then so man can eventually decode the mysteries of spiritual development/ technology, and even commune with those ancient aliens.
-Zipf's Law 1939 -word frequency-word rank straight line relationship with -1 slope for every human language. -log of 'junk' DNA redundancy frequency-rank also, ie, DNA like language (gene-encoded DNA no redundancy, ie, formula)
-Jesus shaman, half-human, half-divine hybrid, crucifixion, piercing, resurrection as spiritualized being. -Lourdes near Paleolithic cave paintings. 'while lady' = Mary. St Nicolas shaman -red-white agaric mushroom down yurt chimney, he flies with reindeer.
-imperceptible electromagnetic field changes can trigger temporary asc, DMT in all living creatures. -explains mass visions.
-spiders weave intricate webs on LSD, ants nurture beetle which secretes fluid which makes them dopy, moths in Arizona favor nectar of datura flowers. ie, gene-encoded DNA common to all.
-near death experiences confirm

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Canadian Eric Walberg is known worldwide as a journalist specializing in the Middle East, Central Asia and Russia. A graduate of University of Toronto and Cambridge in economics, he has been writing on East-West relations since the 1980s.

He has lived in both the Soviet Union and Russia, and then Uzbekistan, as a UN adviser, writer, translator and lecturer. Presently a writer for the foremost Cairo newspaper, Al Ahram, he is also a regular contributor to Counterpunch, Dissident Voice, Global Research, Al-Jazeerah and Turkish Weekly, and is a commentator on Voice of the Cape radio.

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