Although LSD subjects frequently talk about images, these do not have the quality of still photographs. They are in constant dynamic movement and usually convey action and drama. But again, the term "inner movie" that so frequently occurs in LSD reports does not really correctly describe their nature. In cinematography, the three-dimensionality of scenes is artificially simulated by the movement of the camera. The perception of space must be read into the two-dimensional display, and ultimately it depends on the viewers interpretation. In contrast, psychedelic visions are truly three-dimensional and have all the qualities of everyday perception, or at least they can have them in certain types of LSD experiences. They seem to occupy a specific space and can be seen from different directions and angles with a true parallax. It is possible to zoom in and selectively focus on different levels and planes of the experiential continuum, perceive or reconstruct fine texture, and see through transparent media of envisioned objects, such as a cell, an embryonic body, parts of a plant, or a precious stone. This intentional shift of focus is only one mechanism of blurring or clearing the images. The pictures can also be clarified by overcoming the distortions caused by fear, defenses and resistances, or by letting the content evolve along with the continuum of linear time.
An important characteristic of the psychedelic experience is that it transcends space and time. It disregards the linear continuum between the microcosmic world and the macrocosm that appears to be absolutely mandatory in the everyday state of consciousness. The represented objects cover the entire range of dimensions from atoms, molecules, and single cells to gigantic celestial bodies, solar systems, and galaxies. Phenomena from the "zone of middle dimensions," perceivable directly by our senses, appear on the same experiential continuum with those that ordinarily require such complicated technology as microscopes and telescopes to be accessible to human senses. From the experiential point of view, the distinction between the microcosm and macrocosm is arbitrary; they can coexist within the same experience and are readily interchangeable. An LSD subject can experience himself or herself as a simple cell, as a fetus, and as a galaxy; these three states can occur simultaneously, or in an alternating fashion by a simple shift of focus.
In a similar way, the linearity of temporal sequences is transcended in unusual states of consciousness. Scenes from different historical contexts can occur simultaneously and appear to be meaningfully connected by their experiential charactertistics. Thus a traumatic experience from childhood, a painful sequence of biological birthing and what seems to be the memory of a tragic event from a previous incarnation can all appear simultaneously as parts of one complex experiential pattern (my emphasis). And again, the individual has the choice of focusing selectively on any one of these scenes, experiencing them all simultaneously, or perceiving them in an alternating fashion, while discovering meaningful connections between them. The linear temporal distance that dominates everyday experience is disregarded, and events from different historical contexts appear in clusters when they share the same strong emotion or an intense physical sensation of a similar kind.
Psychedelic states offer many experiential alternatives to the Newtonian linear time and three-dimensional space that characterize our everyday existence. Events from recent and remote past and future can be experienced in nonordinary states with the vividness and complexity that in everyday consciousness are reserved only for the present moment. There are modes of psychedelic experience in which time appears to slow down or accelerate enormously, to flow backwards, or to be entirely transcended and cease to exist (my emphasis). It can appear to be circular and linear at the same time, can proceed along a spiral trajectory, or show specific patterns of deflection and distortion. Quite frequently time as a dimension is transcended and acquires spatial characteristics; past, present and future are essentially juxtaposed and coexist in the present moment (my emphasis). On occasion, LSD subjects experience various forms of time-travels-regressing in historical time, passing through time-loops, or stepping out of the time dimension altogether and reentering another point in history.
The perception of space can undergo similar changes: unusual states of mind clearly demonstrate the narrowness and limitations of space with only three coordinates. LSD subjects frequently report that they experience space and the universe as being curved and self-enclosed, or are able to perceive worlds that have four, five or more dimensions (my emphasis). Others have a sense fo being a dimensionless point in consciousness. It is possible to see space as an arbitrary construct and a projection of the mind that has no objective existence at all. Under certain circumstances any number of interpenetrating universes of different orders can be seen in holographic coexistence (my emphasis). As in the case of time travel, one can experience linear transfer to another place be mental space travel, direct and immediate transport through a space loop, or by stepping out of the space dimension altogether and reentering at another place.
The different modes of existence talked about by Stanislav Grof here fascinate me. They also give me hope for a better future in some ways. This is because I feel that if the reality that appears so solid to most of us and unbendable is really so effervescent and derivative (not to be mistaken for the much abused financial instrument:-) that there may just may be a way for the whole human race to survive and flourish in what would seem to be the most perilous of all times in human history coming right at us. It is so funny what a child knows. I had an intuition as a ten- year-old that poverty was created by evil people. I didn't know how to give a voice to my thoughts at the time- and in later times of my life people told me that I was very foolish for thinking that all people on the face of this planet should be happy and not want for anything. I actually gave in to the other view at some point- but no more. I really and truly believe now that poverty - the love of money- power- even sex in some ways are things that exist to keep us trapped within this Black Iron Prison. I will try to work some of these new and old insights into what I believe as I try to continue with some discoveries made by Stanislav Grof- and I would absolutely love to hear what you believe! All the best to anyone stopping by!
PS- like how I re-did the first paragraph of this article? I didn't think it looked good enough the first time around - had to perfect it ya know:-)