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Psychonauts and Manhattan

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I am currently watching Manhattan, an extremely engaging show about the Manhattan Project – the project which created the atomic bombs in New Mexico which were later dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki – resulting in a unconditional surrender by the Japanese and an end to World War 2.

The show has two groups of scientists – the lead team with all the resources – including Plutonium 235 and all the detonating devices they need – and the misfits – who are largely devoid of any substantial resources – including scientists and Plutonium – who are working on an implosion model.

With their backs against the wall and the proverbial firing squad lining up to take out the misfit team, the three primary scientists on the misfit team stay up late one evening – when one breaks out with Psilocybin mushrooms – which has been handed to the scientist in exchange by the local tribal Indians for some provisions and is being used by the tribal Indians for their ceremonies.

Psilocybin mushrooms are hallucinogenic mushrooms – and depending on the variety and strain, provide a wide variety of often unpredictable hallucinations to varying levels of intensity and effect.

As the scientists relax and look at the stars and apparently visual effects while high on the mushrooms, it becomes clear the mushroom experience is a shared hallucinatory experience. Which was my personal experience while visiting Amsterdam. Five of us who had taken the same mushrooms had taken the same mushrooms and had remarkably similar effects that were clearly shared.

In any case, as the scientists relax – one looks in the air and says something that alludes to implosion.

The other scientist says “What did you say?”

And over the next few scenes, they are writing on the chalk board very elegant equations and have just discovered a resolution to one of their critical equations for the implosion model. They later pass out, mentally exhausted.

When they are awakened the next day by their area supervisor, the supervisor takes a look at the board, and asks “What the hell is this?”

We see the board, which is full of gibberish writing which makes absolutely no sense.

The elegant equations they’d all written are no longer there.

And their memories of how they solved those equations are gone as well.

To me, this is indicative of the true nature of reality and what a hallucination is.

A hallucination spins a mind off the linear collective ‘greater good’ reality, and into an alternate reality, temporarily.

The ‘visions’ and ‘sounds’ an sensory experience are undeniably real, and I suspect are largely just different ways of interpreting the same ‘information’ of reality. Leveraging different areas of the brain as the ‘filtering’ mechanism of the ‘linear collective greater good’ reality is circumvented.

So when these men had an epiphany. What we see on the ‘fictional’ show is a quasi-accurate depiction of what happens – perspective wise – with the information developed in an alternate reality.

It doesn’t fully translate to the original reality, because their mental state when this breakthrough was discovered is not fully understood by the collective mind of reality, so what we see in the morning after’s scene is garbish on the board when they wake up.

It’s a fascinating look at how strongly certain forces beyond most human’s comprehension worked against this event ever occurring in World War 2.

I am also playing a game called “Psychonauts”

It’s a pretty phenomenal work of art in my opinion about a little boy who goes to ‘psychonaut’ camp, a summer camp for children who want to become mental warriors.

Sometimes, I swear I am being fed mental development technology from the 30th century with how these games function.

As this game is so damn creative and too cool for words.

The game’s primary character – Razputin – is about a young child who runs away from home to undergo psychonaut training.

Psychonaut training consists of entering the minds of certified trainers – who will then put me – the game’s primary character I control as an avatar – through the ropes of learning how the mind of people can harbor any number of different and weird possibilities – whether it’s the war based memories of the coach, or the dance crazed psychedelic trip of a mind the lady who’s a master of levitation can provide, or it’s the highly ordered and compartmentalized mind of a scientist which hides his demons from himself through the order, all the way to the conspiracy laden mind of a man who’s sanity is questionable.

So last night, as I dove into the mind of the conspiracy guy, I was amazed at the concepts – the man is clearly paranoid, every house has someone peaking out the curtains watching me as I approach. Spies are everywhere reporting on any malfeasance. The same creepy little girl is everywhere – often follows me around – and continually calls me creep whenever I ask her any questions. Mailboxes have people in it who follow me around. There’s even black sedans with satellite dishes in the back transmitting something to a mysterious receiver.

The mind is downright trippy.

But it got me thinking. you can walk on a street and it will turn sideways at a 15 degree angle, and slowly curve to 90 degrees and curve more to 180 degrees where I am quite literally looking at the street I just walked on underneath me as I walk on a new section where gravity moves me towards my surface and not the other surface I just walked on. Trippy trippy trippy.

Through the game, I also level up in skills. And seeing through someone else’s perspective through their eyes is my most recent acquisition. It is an utter trip. There are other skills such as Levitation (being able to float without wires), Telekinesis (Lifting objects through the mind without physically touching them), setting things on fire with the mind, mental bursts of energy which do damage to your target, and so on.

But a key concept is something called ‘Mental cobwebs’ and mental imagery. I collect these and am rewarded with ‘cut scenes’.

But here’s what I am realizing.

As I have cleared these mental cobwebs from the game. I’m dreaming differently. Thoughts are coming to me easier. I’d been suspecting there was a direct correlation between the games I was playing and my mental activity anyways. And having been off pharmaceutical medication for a long time, I am realizing that maybe – video games and television shows are a remedy for psychological issues which reflect outwardly in decreased blood pressure, better self-control, and more control of one’s own mind.

So last night I had the first full color dream I have had in years.

I suspect the game’s influence and my current basic need for sex stimulated a part of that dream.

As the dream featured Jackie Killeen – we were having sex in a dungy room in a weird apartment straight out of the Matrix movie.

But as I looked at her and went to kiss her, the face transitioned to my own face, and – instead of my phallus being inside her vagina, I was now in this other version of me’s rear entry door.

I jumped off. In surprise. And looked down.

Now I was Jackie.

He – the other me – looked at me and said “What’s wrong, Jackie, is everything all right?”

To which I didn’t say a word. I ran to the mirror, where at first I saw myself as Jackie standing in front of the mirror fully nude.

The image flickered. And it reverted back to myself as Q.

And then it flickered again. And there was absolutely nothing there in the mirror.

I moved around, hoping to see a glimpse of something in the mirror, but there was absolutely nothing happening in the mirror.

I ran to Jackie’s room. Not sure how I can tell you it was Jackie’s room. But I ran to her room, and Jackie was having a epileptic fit like none I had ever seen before.

She was electrified. I couldn’t even approach her.

But then again, when I looked down, I couldn’t see my own body and my own hands to touch her with.

I drifted outside the room through a crack in the wall, and a vault door closed. This is where I started waking up.

Or returning from this weird alternate reality.

I marveled briefly at how real the door looked.

And about then I struggled briefly to open my eyes in the real world.

And then I awoke.

Clearly, the entertainment I or anyone engages in influences our thoughts and dreams.

But I have been thinking lately.

When NEO, in the Matrix – plugs himself into the computer and is downloaded instantaneous information to reprogram his mind to know Judo and Karate…

Am I merely experiencing the same thing from ‘within’ the Matrix of reality?

Am I downloading things that I play and choose as entertainment and is this restructuring the very reality around me to accommodate my desires and choices?

I think that’s becoming infinitely clear.

Jackie Killeen and Rachel Gooch.

I love you both. I have since we first met.

I don’t want to talk til we’re blue in the face. I get my heavy conversation out on the internet nowadays.

I’d just like to snuggle you both.

And make movies and tv shows with you two as two of my primary central figures.

Literally and figuratively.

Not only do you both have amazing minds in your own way.

But you both have amazing bodies. And everyone deserves to see what I have seen . I would like to be the conduit for you that achieves that 🙂

Rachel, I still have yet to play Settlers of Cataan with you. Bring it with you when you come.

Have no shame for being who you are. No matter who you are.

As for Psychonauts. Wonderful game. I can’t recommend it more than I have. If you’re interested in learning about the mind, about physics and how the mind can govern different realities, or if you’re interested in perspective – it’s a wonderful work of art that demonstrates things I have taken for granted.

Manhattan’s good too. A bit more on the geeky side though.

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