Following on from the trialogue on the ontology of Discarnate Entities by Sheldrake, McKenna and Abrams, I thought it topical to put up a link to a recent paper in the Journal of Scientific Exploration that proposes a methodology for studying the reality of DMT entity encounters. For those who don’t know, DMT is an extremely potent psychedelic substance that is found naturally in the human brain and which, if consumed, quite often gives rise to the meeting of extraordinary entities. Although these meetings generally take place in one’s “mind space” (whatever that is) they are of such an ineffable and numinous nature that many people tend to be convinced of the reality of the seemingly sentient beings that they meet, often causing considerable turbulence to one’s sense of what reality really is.
Grossly simplified, the admirable article by Marko Rodriguez proposes obtaining from the entities solutions to complex mathematics puzzles that the DMT experient does not know. Regrettably, this ingenious method for testing the independent existence of entities encountered on DMT is subject to a number of flaws, not least of which are the huge assumptions involved in expecting our supposed hyper-intelligent beings actually having the desire to cooperate and make themselves proven (let alone the DMT experient’s capability to ask them). The most crippling problem for his test, however, is what is known as the "super-psi hypothesis"; an issue long proved difficult to surmount in parapsychological attempts to validate the existence of discarnate entities considered spirits of the dead, e.g. those apparently communicating via trance mediums.
The problem is that, because clairvoyance, telepathy and precognition (collectively called psi) have no theoretical (or even apparent) limits, it always remains a possibility that any information provided by ostensibly discarnate entities may actually be due to the “super” psi of the person (e.g., the medium) receiving the information. One of the most cogent articles on the super-psi hypothesis in relation to survival after death comes from Prof. Stephen Braude and also appeared in the Journal of Scientific Exploration several years earlier in 1992. Anyway here’s the abstract of the Rodriguez paper and a link to the full pdf.
A Methodology for Studying Various Interpretations of the N,N-dimethyltryptamine-Induced Alternate Reality
N,N-dimethyltryptamine, or DMT, is an endogenous psychoactive chemical that has been shown through repeated human subject experimentation to provide the subject with a perception of an ‘alternate reality’. When administered a sufficient DMT dose, subjects have reported the presence of intelligent beings that do not appear to be the projections of their subconscious in the Freudian sense. Furthermore, and of particular interest to this article, many subjects believe that the percieved alternate reality is persistent in that it exists irrespective of their subjective momentary perception. Past research into the DMT-induced alternate reality comes solely from subject testimonies and to date, no analysis has been conducted to understand the objective aspects of these extraordinary subjective claims. This article provides a methodology for studying the nature of the DMT-induced alternate reality by means of various simple information theory experiments. These experiments can be used to test which of the presented interpretations of the DMT-induced alternate reality appears most plausible.