Your brain is a thinking machine, it unconsciously labels everything that comes in through the senses – constantly judging people, places, and things, all based on its past experiences.
Most people today confine their world to this level of thinking, referred to as the “collective unconscious” – a term coined by Carl Jung that relates to structures of the unconscious mind shared by beings of the same species .
“The intuitive mind is a sacred gift and the rational mind is a faithful servant. We have created a society that honours the servant and has forgotten the gift.”
– Albert Einstein
Your view of the world in this moment, is simply a projection of your brains conditioning from ideas it has formed from the past.
Altered states are simply anything that takes you out of this waking normal state.
Transcending reality, living beyond perceived human limitation, accessing altered states of being, might seem delusional to some, but these realms are becoming increasingly accessible.
As technology advances, the information now available can help us understand what is taking place inside the brain – giving deep insights into how to maximise the power of transcending the human mind.
Why do you need altered states?
Think back to a time when you achieved something great, something truly memorable. It might have been a creative project, successful presentation, outstanding sports performance, or even conquering a fear.
During these moments you had access to a sensation of aliveness, creativity, intuition – you lose track of time, concentration levels peak, personal problems are forgotten, and you feel fully involved.
Essentially in these moments you have transcended reality as you know it and tapped into an alternate dimension free of thought, a place where life becomes effortlessly simple.
The triggers for altered states
In the past altered states have generally only been accessed by elite athletes and top performers, but now information is becoming available to enable people, like you, to reach these higher realms.
There are 3 general categories for reaching altered states:
- Meditative/mystic states (yoga, tai chi, dance)
No matter which one you use, the destination is the same – some involve higher degrees of risk (psychedelics and flow) whilst the meditative and mystic states can be achieved more safely, albeit requiring more time.
Meditative practices offer the safest avenue to experiencing connection to the formless dimension beyond the physical world. Practices such as yoga and Tai Chi incorporate movement to assist in training the mind to transcend the mundane and connect to the yogi lexicon of peace, love, and joy.
Meditation will create stillness in the mind enabling creativity, whilst simultaneously reducing your reactivity to external events. This makes you far more tolerant to stress and anxiety, and boosts your ability to find happiness.
That being said, there is no one-size-fits-all approach to meditation, so don’t expect to hit the mark on your first attempt – commit to consistency over duration.
Meditation is a practice that can take many forms, it is important to identify which works best for you and stick with it – you can find more info here.
Imagine for a moment you are skydiving. You are free-falling towards the earth, you feel the wind rushing onto your face, and your body feels weightless – you are completely absorbed in the moment. Time dilates, the mind shuts off, and you are free of fear.
This state of consciousness is referred to in positive psychology as flow. Described as the state of “optimal experience” by Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi – achieving flow gives the experiencer a profound neurochemical cocktail, amplifying creativity and motivation. Studies have linked higher life satisfaction in people who experience increased amounts of flow.
Accessibility to flow is becoming hackable and is now being utilised by Navy Seals, Harvard University Grads and Tech experts as a way of engineering optimal human performance.
The stigma surrounding these classes of drugs is beginning to decrease, albeit slowly. The information now available is providing irrefutable evidence on their effectiveness to produce altered states.
There is a guaranteed outcome when taking psychedelics – however, the exact nature of the outcome is not guaranteed, this is why these drugs must be approached with caution.
Creative thinkers have been utilising the benefits of micro dosing LSD for years. Micro dosing offers a more controlled effect while supporting creative work for longer durations.
Choose wisely before you start delving into the world of brain altering drugs, be sure to do your research, and pick a safe environment for your first experience. If you want to fast track your way to alternate reality, psychedelics are your one-way ticket.
“You are an explorer, and you represent our species, and the greatest good you can do is to bring back a new idea, because our world is endangered by the absence of good ideas. Our world is in crisis because of the absence of consciousness” – Terence McKenna
Everyone has the capacity to tune in to these experiences, they are not reserved for the rich and famous. If you’re not taking advantage of them you are missing out on both the performance- and consciousness-enhancing power these states can offer.